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DIY Pedicure: Mastering the Art - The Ultimate Guide (2020)

DIY Pedicure: Mastering the Art - The Ultimate Guide (2020)

Nothing screams ‘beauty is expensive’ like cosmetics and body care. The next time you see a woman looking good, take time to appreciate the hard work and money, the look must have demanded.

Unless you have a sizable load of cash to spare, like every average woman, you’re in a constant search to achieve premium beauty by leveraging on the least expensive procedures. 

What if we told you that you didn’t have to empty your pockets at the best salon in your town to get pretty toenails? What if you could give your feet and toenails salon-standard results all from the comfort of your home? 

No, not home service from a pedicurist at the salon – that would cost even more! What if you were your pedicurist?

Without further ado, ladies, we introduce DIY pedicure!

What is a Pedicure?

Let’s get some quick perspective into this. As opposed to what many know, a pedicure goes beyond the care of the toenails.

A proper pedicure is a cosmetic treatment of both the feet and the toenails. A toenail-only pedicure is no pedicure at all.

Irreplaceable checklist for a decent pedicure

What are the things that make a basic pedicure possible? Now, basic and decent are the keywords here.

Kim Kardashian could afford some luxurious extras into the mix. These might have no grand effect on the outcome, but the extra dollars they incur on those extras make them feel different from another typical lady at the salon.

None of that, however. Without the tools we’ll be considering below, even the most primitive form of a DIY pedicure is impossible.

They are listed in no particular order of importance.

  • Nail cutter
  • Cuticle pusher
  • Nail polish remover
  • Nail buffer/file
  • Foot file
  • Toe separator
  • Nail brush
  • Nail polish

The DIY pedicure procedure

Own a good pair of feet without breaking the bank to visit a salon. Perform the perfect DIY pedicure without leaving your home in only ten steps.

  1. Apply your nail polish remover

An old wineskin makes new wine old. In the same vein, the first step in your DIY pedicure is to remove relics of previous pedicures. Begin by removing nail polish. Use a remover and a cotton pad to do this. When a cotton pad is not present, any other durable and absorbent material will suffice. “But, all my nail polish faded already.” Apply the remover nonetheless if there’s no polish on your nails. This will remove whatever excess oil on your nail bed.

  1. Let your feet swim

Give yourself the spa experience within the confines of your house. Bury your feet in a body of warm, soapy water. Your tub is the perfect container, but a large bucket would do just fine too. The soap you use is of no significant value either. Use your regular body wash. Asides soap, you could use compounds like Epsom salt, white vinegar, or Listerine. Leave your feet in for about 15 minutes, and try not to fall asleep.

  1. Dry your feet.

When out of the water, completely dry your feet with a dry towel. Ensure you clean in between the toes too. Leave exposed in air for a few minutes.

  1. If it’s dead, then bury it.

Once dry, remove all dead skin using a foot file. These are callous, hard areas most present on the sides of your feet, balls of your feet, heels, and soles. File these areas until they are smooth to touch. Don’t bruise your skin from over-scraping, however. Aside from foot scrubs and pumice stone, there are other methods of removing dead skin that doesn’t involve scraping or scrubbing. Here’s the most common one.

  • Paraffin wax: involve wrapping your feet in plastic after dipping it in many layers of wax. When dried, peel off the wax. Dead skin comes off with the peeled wax.
  1. Focus on your nails

It’s time to use probably the most common pedicure tool: the nail cutter. Use it to trim your nails to achieve the desired dimensions. Professional advice is to cut right across, then use a nail file to carve out the edges. Your cuticles are not your nails, so do not cut them. Amongst other functions, your cuticles majorly protect your nail from infection. Hence, if you continuously trim off your cuticles during a DIY pedicure, it is only a matter of time before you lose what you’re trying to keep. While it could achieve seemingly cosmetic results, it endangers your nails in more ways than one. The worst you’re allowed to do to your cuticles are gently push them in with a cuticle pusher after you bring out your feet from the water.

  1. Use cuticle oil

Rub in cuticle oil against the base of your nail. This keeps your nail tender and moisturized. Have you noticed from past DIY pedicures that your nail polish fades off too quickly? You’ve probably not been using cuticle oil. Hence, cuticle oils also have aesthetic values.

  1. Moisturize your feet

Having moisturized your nails with cuticle oil, shower your feet with the same affection. We advise that you use an unscented lotion to maintain your feet skin moist and smooth. While it’d be nice to have your feet smelling like blueberries, scented moisturizers damage your nail polish. Use a shoe fresher to achieve this effect instead.

  1. Ready your toes

This is sure to give you a funny feeling. If you want to make a mess of your nail painting, use toe separators.

  1. Apply your nail polish

You should know that this step and the one that precedes it is optional. It’s just a general notion that new nail polish is proof that you just got a new pedicure. So, why not?

Before you start painting your nails, apply a base coat. Providing an anchor for your nail polish, it helps it to last longer. Once the base coat is dry, gently apply the nail paint in thin, consistent layers. Wait for one layer to dry before applying the next. Apply two to three coats.

  1. Finish your DIY pedicure

No better finishing for your nail coat then a quick-drying topcoat. These give your nail quality shine. They’d never looked more beautiful in open shoes. It takes about half a day for your nail polish to harden. Nobody has this time to sit on their hands. Immersing your feet in cold water shortens this waiting time from 12 hours to only a few minutes.

Do-it-yourself Pedicure FAQs

Q1. Can I cut my cuticles?

Your cuticle is the dead skin at the base of your nail. It majorly functions to protect your nails from common bacterial and fungal infections. Cutting or trimming them will leave your nails exposed. So, no. No, you should not cut them.

Q2. I have no polish on my nails. Do I still need a remover?

Yes, you do. Beyond removing your nail polish, nail polish removers rid your nail bed of excess oil.


Pedicure is an important part of cosmetics and body care. It is important, but it is equally expensive.

We walk you through stepwise procedures to performing a DIY pedicure from your home.

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