Step 1: Soak Your Feet
Dipping your feet into warm water will soften skin and make it easier for you to push back your cuticles. Fancy foot baths are nice and all, but Carney says a chrome salad bowl will work just as well.
Step 2: Buff & Exfoliate
“Women’s feet tend to rougher and tougher than men’s,” Carney explains, “since we’re wearing heels and wedges without socks all the time.” Erase those ancient callouses by scrubbing the bottoms of your feet with a pumice or an exfoliating cloth like MicrodermaMitt’s Body Mitt. Get rid of any lingering roughness with a serious scrub, starting from your calves and working downwards. We like dirt’s sweet-smelling Luxe Salt Scrub in Lemon Leaf because it leaves skin moisturized.
Step 3: Moisturize
The skin on your feet is notoriously neglected, which means it’s extra important to use an intensive balm. We go for Yu-Be® Moisturizing Skin Cream, which has a high concentration of replenishing glycerin, and J.R. Watkins Foot Salve, a zesty, grease-free formula loaded with peppermint oil.
Step 4: Cut & Shape
Grab those clippers and cut carefully. Carney says the most popular nail shape right now is a classic square with slightly rounded edges. Instead of using conventional finishing tools, Carney suggests investing in a glass nail and cuticle smoother to gently file over hangnails and push back rough cuticles. “It’s much safer than cutting your cuticles,” she says.
Step 5: Apply Polish
It’s time for the main event! Light pastel polishes are perfect for the warmer months since they offset golden tans. We love Zoya’s new Bevin, an opaque silvery sage. Another fail-proof option: a neutral sheer like Carney’s fave RGB Polish Beach, which is inspired by the look of feet buried in sand.