How to do your own professional pedicure at home

Picture: Kathleen O'Rourke / The Stamford Advocate

Picture: Kathleen O'Rourke / The Stamford Advocate

Published Apr 24, 2024


With a little time and effort, and a few supplies you can find at your local pharmacy, you can give yourself a fabulous foot makeover at home.

What you will need

  • Non-acetone polish remover
  • Aromatherapy oil
  • Body moisturiser
  • Toenail scrub brush
  • Pumice stone, callus file, or emery board
  • Stainless steel nail clipper
  • A cuticle pusher or orange stick
  • Paraffin wax booties
  • Pair of socks
  • Box of plastic cling wrap
  • Towels

Step 1: Remove your toenail polish

It's best to use a non-acetone polish remover. Polish removers containing acetone are very harsh on the nails and may cause the thinning of the nail plate and the formation of unsightly ridges.

Every now and then, you should give your toenails a break from nail polish. Keeping your toenails constantly painted may cause them to become discoloured. If that does happen, leave them bare for a couple of weeks. They should soon return to their normal colour.

Step 2: Soak your feet

A relaxing foot soak for 15 to 20 minutes will do wonders for your feet. You can add aromatherapy oils to the tub of water if you choose, but it's not necessary. Soaking your feet will loosen dry scales and soften the thick, hardened layers of skin on your heels, toes, and balls of your feet.

Use a toenail brush to gently scrub your toenails at the end of the soak.

Step 3: Trim calluses and corns

After the soak, use a pumice stone, emery board, or callus file to gently reduce corns and calluses. It may take a few trimmings before you can remove all of the hardened skin. Take care not to cut or file your skin too deeply.

Step 4: Trim your toenails

Use a stainless-steel nail clipper to trim your toenails. To prevent over-trimming, cut the toenails straight across. Then gently round the corners with an emery board.

You can push your cuticles back, but make every effort to avoid cutting them. Cutting cuticles not only increases the risk of splitting and bleeding but also provides easier access for bacteria and fungus to the nail bed.

Step 5: Give yourself a wax treatment

A paraffin wax treatment will make your feet feel incredibly soft. Slip on the pre-packaged paraffin wax booties and wrap your feet in a towel to retain your natural body heat.

Step 6: Moisturise and massage your feet

To finish your foot spa treatment, apply a moisturiser to your feet. The softened tissues will better absorb the emollients in the lotion and ensure softer, well-hydrated feet.

Gently massage your feet as you apply the lotion, stretching tendons in the toe joints and the arch of your feet. This is especially useful if you have plantar fasciitis, a disorder of the tissue that supports the arch.

After applying lotion, put on a pair of socks or wrap your feet in plastic wrap for 30 minutes. This step ensures better absorption of the lotion—a big plus if you have dry, flaky feet.

IOL Lifestyle