Toenail Care

Caring for your toenails means caring for your feet in general. By following a few easy steps, you can ensure your feet stay healthy and look their best.

The first thing is to wash your feet daily with warm soapy water. Make sure the area between the toes is properly dried, as moisture here can lead to cracked skin and athlete’s foot.

Next is to moisturise your feet. Preferably using a foot moisturising cream as this will protect and nourish the skin.

It is good practice to check your feet for any damage or other issues such as callous, corns, infections, nail problems or skin spits.

Also, keep toenails nicely trimmed, avoiding any sharp and rough edges. Nails should be cut straight across the toe, with a slight curve at the end of the toe. A good nail file will help you achieve this.

Lastly do not go deep into the sides of the nail as this may lead to infections and ingrowing toenails.

Painting Toenails

Painting toenails is a normal thing to do, everyone does it, especially in the summer when your feet are on full display. However, like everything else the continuous painting of your toenails may result in the pigment from the nail polish soaking into your nails causing them to discolour and dry them out over time.

Naturally, these can easily lead to an infection underneath the nail. If you paint your toenails, it is best to leave the paint on until it’s time for it to be removed (around two to three weeks in most cases), and then allow an equal amount of time for your toenails to be left natural.

So what can you do to reverse the trend?

Ensure that you use an oily nail varnish remover or one with built-in moisturisers. Do not remove and reapply polish more than once or twice a week, as it is going to dry out your nails more so. Use a base coat which protects your nails against harsh nail varnishes and colours.

An oily nail bath encourages nail growth. Warm some almond oil, and then soak your toenails in that oil for about 10 minutes. Use a cotton bud to push cuticles back after treatment.

On the other hand, polish the nails with cotton wool soaked in olive oil; leave it on for as long as you can, preferably overnight. To encourage healthy and strong nails, rub Vaseline into nails and nail bed at night, wiping off any excess.

Indicator of health

Nails are a great indicator of general good health. Any changes in your nails could indicate an underlying disease, so check with your GP if you have any concerns.

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