Sunday Self-care, Episode 4: Happy Feet

Sometimes I think that at some period of my life, which for some reason I cannot remember, I was a mermaid who traded her tail for a pair of feet. I talk about the original story, not the gentrified Disney’s version. But while I do not feel like I’m walking on sharp knives, most new shoes I wear hurt for at least the first week. It happens with any type of shoes – loafers, sandals, boots and even sneakers. Same goes for shoes that I haven’t worn in a while. So, I constantly fight with calluses, blisters or corns.

Over years, I found a couple of brands of shoes that usually work for me (or at least I break them in faster), but I wont bore you with the brands: shoes are too individual to make any recommendations. I discovered perfect socks for walking and then switched to them for daily use when clothes allow. The brand is Wrightsock, type Coolmesh II: these are double layer socks that prevent blisters. For example, these crew socks.

Wrightsock Coolmesh II

For sandals and other types of shoes that are worn without socks I use a trick suggested by a friend: to prevent blisters, as soon as I feel friction anywhere on my foot, I apply a solid antiperspirant. Theoretically, there are specialized anti-blister sticks, and I used those as well, but at some point, when a favorite of mine was discontinued, I tried what my friend suggested and was amazed how well that worked. And if to get a travel size 0.35-0.5 oz, it fits perfectly in a small purse. And it is cheaper than a designated product. I tried Dove, Secret and Native. Just make sure it’s solid and not a gel or a cream.

Travel Deodorants

Speaking of wearing sandals. Last year, I discovered two new (for me) products that became a part of my self-care rituals when it comes to making my feet happy: an Electric Foot Callus Remover and Cala Foot Masks. I won’t claim that my feet are “baby soft,” but the results are good. Besides, even without returning my heels to the newborn state, I can feel slight etching on my sandals’ insoles under my heels (remember – a mermaid), so taking off too much of a dead skin probably is not a good idea for me. But I like my feet better after I gently go over any dry or uneven surfaces with this tool. And every time I use this device (once a month or so), I finish the procedure with a moisturizing foot mask. I tried both shown on the picture below, but I prefer the Sea Salt mask because the rose one smells too artificial (but still works quite well).

Callus Remover and Foot Masks

Do you have any favorite products or tricks when it comes to taking care of your feet?


Images: Socks – from Amazon product page; deodorants – collage with manufacturer’s photos; the last one – my own.


Disclaimer: This post doesn’t contain any affiliated links. All recommendations based on products I purchased.

15 thoughts on “Sunday Self-care, Episode 4: Happy Feet

  1. Interesting about the anti antiperspirant. I had heard of using duct tape, but that’s a lot easier. I ruined my feet by wearing rubber thongs for 30 years, due to living abroad in hot climates. My feet finally rebelled, and now I have to make sure I have shoes with really good arch supports if I’m walking much.


    • I could never wear those rubber thingies for longer than 20-30 minutes, mostly to and from the beach :)

      Every time I apply antiperspirant to my feet, I mentally thank my friend for the advice.


  2. Those socks look great. I’ll have to try them. I am always making sure to take good care of my feet. I have psoriatic arthritis, which is hard on the feet. Plantar fascitis is always lurking, trying to take over my feet, so I wear only Nike and Ecco shoes with padding and arch supports most days and Smartwool socks as well. My favorite socks are athletic socks from Madewell. I just discovered them and I love them. They are so nice and cushioned, divine!

    I use Caudalie foot cream and Malin & Goetz bergamot body cream for my feet. Feet are important!! I have not had any calluses since I stopped wearing heels many years ago. I have a titanium rod for my left femur so only flat shoes for me.


    • I rarely wear heels because of my back issues. I’ll check out those Madewell socks. What I like about Wrightsock is that they are black to look like dress socks under pants with loafers and long enough to wear even with ankle boots.
      I added Caudalie cream to my Amazon list – thanks for the recommendation.


  3. My feet are chronically dry and calloused because I neglect them. When I get around to it, I use a pumice stone to remove the rough dry skin and shea butter to moisturize. I like Smartwool socks too.


  4. Socks – Darn Tough Vermont socks are great. They really are darn tough and you can get thinnish ones that transition well from the more rugged shoes to ones that are not.

    When wearing dress shoes, which I haven’t worn since forever but did a week ago Sunday for a wedding, I wore Nike footies then my hose (I don’t go hoseless when I wear a dress). Of course my shoes were Croc brand but they were dress shoes. At the wedding, the bride ended up taking off her shoes and I also saw a number of people wear their flat dancing shoes!


    • I’m amazed by two separate things: 1. I also don’t do dresses “barefoot” (unless it’s a summer dress and sandals) and 2. Until I read your comment and investigated, I didn’t imagine Crocs had dress shoes :)


  5. Wow! Thanks for the perspirant hint – makes total sense but never ever occurred to me. :) And yes, much cheaper than the actual blister things.
    I do have a question, although not foot related. :) I started rowing and now I have blisters on my hands, do you have any suggestion/remedy on how to heal them faster?


    • I do!
      Don’t “pop” them if you can. If it’s available where you live, get a large blister plaster/second skin and cover the blisters. If no, moisturize hands well, apply petroleum jelly (on top of the moisturizer) and cover loosely with bandages.

      All folk remedies, such as using cabbage, aloe, oatmeal, honey, etc. will doubtfully help, but if the skin is intact, they won’t hurt, and they can make you feel like you’re actively doing something ;) Don’t do olive oil – it dries up your skin.

      In future, use talcum and either special gloves or … I’m not sure how it’s called, but gymnasts use that on their hands to do beams and other friction-prone disciplines.


  6. Great tip on the anti-perspirant. My feet tend to blister in new shoes (and some not so new). Like the rest of my body I have dry skin on my feet so I regularly use a hand balm. I occasionally use a foot file for dry heels and finish this off with Flexitol Heel Balm then pop on a pair of cotton socks.


    • I need to buy special socks to keep a moisturizer longer on my feet as I sleep. I used to have some years ago, but keep forgetting to look for a new pair: it’s hard to find 100% cotton socks these days.


  7. That is a nifty use for the anti-perspirant which would never have occurred to me! I usually put blister pads on after the damage is well and truly done, though I haven’t had blisters for a long time. My main hosiery issue atm is the fact that my socks keep shrinking in the wash for some reason, especially the bamboo kind.


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