Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Summertime Toes: Pinterest-style

I'm not a pedicure kind of girl. Mostly because I'm too stingy, but also because it's a confusing situation (emotionally) for me. Why? Because I'm supposed to simultaneously relax and assert myself, if necessary. What, pray tell, is relaxing about that?? Being assertive feels like confrontation to me. I don't want anyone to feel uncomfortable, so I choose not to say what I'd really like to sometimes. Last time I threw caution to the wind and decided to relax. As the lady started painting bright yellow on my coral nails, I wanted to yell, "Stop!!" But I didn't. Instead I figured out how to avoid her question when she asked if I liked it. She added kelly green next. Now on this day, I was in a fragile state and this made me feel like crying. 

Just not my thing.

But when I catch a glimpse of my feet in flip-flops, I sure wish it was. It's one of the many places I seem to fall off the self-grooming wagon. I notice this three times a week now, as I stare at my bare foot during yoga class. That's when my teacher started raving about the vinegar, mouthwash foot soak I'd seen on Pinterest. It helps me believe when a real live person testifies to the effectiveness of a Pinterest idea. Otherwise, I see a mental slideshow of "nailed it" projects. This being my personal favorite.


Okay, just one more...

But we are believing, so I gathered these ingredients:

Vinegar, mouth wash and hot water. To submerge both feet, I did a cup of each. Now, I didn't feel like boiling water and my tap gets pretty hot, so I ran it til I couldn't touch it anymore and poured it in. Boiling water would be too much like cooking and Lord knows, I hate cooking and besides, nobody had mentioned boiling the water. 

Well, when it's only a third of the concoction and the other two thirds are room temp, it's not very hot. I decided this once I had my feet in and didn't care to start over. I thought I'd compensate by soaking a little longer. 

Now if you do this in your bathroom, you'll probably have a towel handy, but if not, get one! I relocated to my kitchen because the light was better for photos (you're welcome) and found myself stranded with no towel. Then there was some scooting with both feet in the bowl to reach a towel in my kitchen cupboard. Some scooting and sloshing...just get a towel first. 

I soaked about 40 minutes (30 is recommended). And boy were my feet cold--for the rest of the day. So if it's summertime and you just can't cool down, maybe try soaking your feet in minty mouthwash. It was crazy. Anyway, I toweled my feet off and used a tool that looks kind of like a cheese-grater to exfoliate my skin. (I prefer it to a pumice stone, but it works about the same.) My skin didn't just "slough off" like the claims, but I'm guessing that was my not-hot-water's fault. However, I did feel like my feet were free of the messy dryness around my nails and I was pleased when they still appeared that way the morning after. 

Since I apparently have no shame, I will show you my befores and afters. If feet gross you out, I'd skip this part. My big toes are my problem area and while they didn't turn out baby soft, there was improvement.

So if your midsummer toes are a little sad, I'd give this a shot. With boiling water. Have a happy evening pampering yourself your own way. For me, the above is a necessary chore that feels good when it's done. If that's you too, I'd like to clarify that I mean pamper yourself in a not chore-ish way. Like getting lost in a book or enjoying Java Chip ice cream...

Maybe simultaneously.

Now that's relaxing.


As winter was setting in, I decided to try this again with boiling water and Listerine's alcohol-free mouthwash, since alcohol seemed counter-productive. It was still not revolutionary. Though the water was hot when I first put my feet in, it cooled quickly and the skin removal still took some "elbow grease," if you will. I don't know if my feet are just ridiculously tough from years of neglect (completely possible), but this wasn't the "dead skin practically fell off" solution I was hoping for. Bummer. 


  1. I tried the foot soak a few weeks ago, too. I didn't have the promised results, but it sure was nice to sit & soak my toes!

  2. Kendra, I cannot possibly tell you how much I needed the release of laughter I just experienced through reading this post. I was already laughing out loud at,"Lord knows, I hate cooking," so I beg you to imagine the shrieking and gasping going on as I read further. I haven't decided whether I will attempt the soak, and you have certainly provided a mind-body-spirit healing session for me with the writing and photos. Thanks for being my new-best-friend. ( ;

    btw, did Pinterest recommend a specific minty mouthwash?

    1. I'm so glad! It didn't say, but one person suggested Tom's mouthwash because it doesn't have the blue color (that apparently stains feet sometimes). I don't think it has to be minty either because some people showed Listerine. Just get a towel! ;)