By Ann Thariani
There’s still snow on the ground in some places, but the optimists among us are shopping for sandals already!
Are your feet showing the effects of a long, dreary winter, shoved into thick socks and shoes and largely forgotten? Chastise yourself for just one second, resolve to do better next year, then move on and get down to business!
First, gather your supplies...
You’ll need something to soak in, something to scrub with, something to moisturize with and something to seal moisture in. Many products we use to peel, scrub and moisturize use ingredients with dubious, synthetic origins. By using good quality, natural products, you can get the same results without the chemical exposure.
The essential items you’ll need are:
• Epsom Salts or Sea salts to soak in. (Gilden Tree offers an excellent Revitalizing Spa Soak that also includes Shea Butter Balm for moisture.)
• Olive Oil, or if you can get it, Jojoba Oil.
• A terra cotta Footscrubber, to be used with liquid soap, shower gel or a scrub.
• Nourishing Foot Cream - rich, concentrated cream helps soothe and heal dry skin.
If you have the budget, add:
• Exfoliating Foot Scrub - a creamy scrub that uses fine pumice for exfoliation.
• 95% Shea Butter Balm - a remarkable balm to use right over Nourishing Foot Cream on really dry spots like heels and balls of feet. Also good on nails & cuticles.
• Hand, Nail & Cuticle Salve - a rich Shea Butter cream that penetrates deeply into nails and cuticles, helping them to be softer and healthier.
Crash course plan (To be followed every day for at least five days)
1. Soak feet for 15 minutes in a footbath or basin filled with warm water, 2 Tbsp salts and 1 Tbsp olive oil.
2. Use a wet washcloth with a few drops of liquid soap or shower gel to gently cleanse all over feet. If you have Exfoliating Foot Scrub, add 2 tsp to the cloth.
3. Add a few drops of liquid soap to the Footscrubber and gently scrub the bottoms of feet. 2 tsp of Exfoliating Foot Scrub also works very well with the Footscrubber.
4. Place foot back in footbath and repeat for other foot.
5. Remove first foot, dry gently and massage in about 2 tsp of Nourishing Foot Cream. If you have Shea Butter, massage a tiny, pea-sized amount into very dry places like heels and nails. If you have Hand, Nail & Cuticle Salve, it can be used the same way.
You will be amazed at the difference in your feet after just five days. From then on, just repeat the process once or twice a week and continue to use your Footscrubber and Foot Cream daily.
So, pull out your sexiest sandals and get to work!
*Ann Thariani is a co-founder and co-owner of Gilden Tree Inc., a manufacturer of natural, healing foot, hand & body care products as well as natural cotton waffle weave towels, robes and accessories. Ann and her husband Kumy started Gilden Tree in 1990 as an eco-friendly company that gives back to women and children in Pakistan. Their efforts were featured in a TIME Magazine article on businesses giving back in December of 2005. The Footscrubber was featured as “The Best Sole Saver” in O, the Oprah Magazine in April of 2008.