This week, the UK government finally announced that salons can reopen and that they are allowed to offer manicures and pedicures once more. Frankly, I couldn’t be more overjoyed. Months of neglect has left my nails looking seriously worse for wear and there’s no doubt that they could benefit from some professional pruning. And while I am certainly itching to get back to the nail bar and have book in for some chic nail art, it’s actually the prospect of a pedicure that has me most excited.
As outdoor activities and general socialising are becoming a more regular part of my life, and I’m slipping on my summer sandals more and more, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to ignore the state of my feet. You see, whereas the lead up to summer would usually involve a trip to the salon for a pedicure (or even an appointment with the chiropodist) to get my toes ready for sandal season, this year I had to go without—and it shows. My feet are dry, cracked and generally worse for wear.
I’m sure, therefore, that you can understand the sheer delight I felt when it was announced earlier this week that pedicures are officially back on the cards with salons set to reopen from Monday. However, upon messaging my go-to nail place (in what I thought was record timing) to book in to have my feet preened, I was informed I was already too late and that they are fully booked for the rest of the month.
And it would seem I’m not alone. A huge amount of people I have spoken to are also struggling to get a pedicure appointment. So, in the meantime, in a bid to keep your feet looking their best, keep scrolling for an edit of the best creams and balms that promise to banish dry skin.
Sitting somewhere between a super-rich cream and a nourishing balm, this stuff is my go-to for when my heels need a serious helping hand. Cotton thistle and tamanu oil work to condition and diminish the appearance of rough skin. The reason it’s top of the list for me, though, is that it sinks in without a trace of greasy residue. Oh, and it smells like a spa.
If you ask me, when it comes to everyday moisture, this cream can’t be beaten. It’s got a slightly earthy hemp smell to it but, over time, I’ve actually grown to quite like it. Most importantly, it’s fuss-free and wields seriously soft and supple results thanks to hemp seed oil, which is super rich in skin-loving essential fatty acids.
If it’s a summer foot cream you’re after, look no further. Not only does this cream leave heels impossibly smooth thanks to cupuacu butter and coconut oil, the totally delicious pistachio and salted caramel scent will put a smile on your face every time you flip the lid. Plus, it also comes with a foot file shaped like a surfboard, and what’s not to love about that?
Can’t get to an expert? This next-level foot cream, formulated by hand and foot guru Margaret Dabbs, basically brings the expert to you. Formulated with emu oil to reduce inflammation and also salicylic acid to exfoliate, it’s one of the most hardworking foot creams out there.
Hear me out. Initially, the idea of a urea-based beauty product might make you want to run for the hills, but this stuff is essential in my bathroom cabinet. Along with my favourite ingredients ever (ceramides), urea works to moisturise and improve the lipid barrier to protect against further dryness. It’s an affordable gem.
Ameliorate is a brand that knows exactly what it’s doing when it comes to dealing with dry, sore skin. Unlike so many other creams that just offer up nourishment and moisture, this treatment contains hardworking ingredients to seriously improve the condition of the skin on your feet. Using lactic acid to slough away at rough skin and (you guessed it) urea to help the skin barrier, it’s a winner.
If you’re missing that glorious post-pedi feeling, this foot cream is for you. It’s rich and luxe in every single way. With shea butter and lavender oil, it helps to calm and nourish stressed-out feet. It looks pretty on the shelf, too.
I have been using Foot Magic for years, and I can’t imagine my beauty routine without it. Unlike others on this list, this stuff is a really oily, rich balm. It’s minty and refreshing but the texture itself is so thick and greasy, I wouldn’t advise using it as an everyday foot treatment. With that being said, it really does work incredibly well. Simply slather on a thick layer and pop some socks over the top before you go to bed and wake up to totally rejuvenated feet.
Shea butter is a common ingredient in foot creams thanks to its intense moisturising properties, however, it’s the salicylic acid present in this formula that sets it above the rest. While the butter nourishes and softens, the acids helps to prevent rough, dry skin from returning.
Speaking of salicylic acid, this stuff contains LHA (lipohydroxy acid), which is a gentler SA derivative. La Roche-Posay’s Lipikar range utilises LHA to help nourish overly dry skin without causing irritation, and this foot cream is a real game-changer.
I get it—foot creams and balms aren’t the most glamorous of products out there, but this balm really does feel like a treat every time you use it. Scented with sacred wood and lavender, it’s calming and relaxing in every possible way.
Whenever I use this stuff, I feel like I get too much joy out of using it for it to actually be doing anything worthwhile. However, just because it feels wonderful and smells divine doesn’t mean it’s not working hard too. With exfoliating fruit acids and moisturising oils, it leaves feet velvety and smooth.