Published on July 17th, 2015 | by Yashodhara Ghosh
WEATHER WISE: Foot soldier!
You waterproof every precious inch of you with umbrellas and trench coats but there is that one part of you that HAS to make (dreaded) contact: your feet!
It happens every year. That first burst of euphoria when the clouds part after a long summer is quickly washed away in your first encounter with the flooded streets, with all their mud, muck and filth-from-the-block that they force you to wade through. Your feet are the first casualties in the ill-fated war against monsoon goop; that first frontier of conflict when you take that inevitable plunge and wade to get to work. But it doesn’t have to be a losing battle. With some discipline and effort, you can put your best foot forward – on the wettest day of the season in the filthiest street in town…
- Squeaky clean: No points for guessing this one: wash your feet well, and with warm water whenever you can. Use a good scrub or pumice stone to get rid of residual dirt and skin. Make sure you reach in between the toes and root it all out. Bacteria, fungi and other germs colonise these nooks and crannies and feed on the dead skin cells, and dirt particles that get lodged there. If your feet have touched dirty water, add some Savlon or disinfectant to the water for good measure.
- The unholy trinity: Here’s some basic science: germs need three things to survive: a Surface, Moisture, and Food. Your feet, with the crevasses between the toes, provide the perfect breeding surface, and there’s nothing much you can do about that. Your best bet is to eliminate the other factors. Starve those little devils: exfoliate to get rid of any dead skin or organic matter. Dry your feet well as well as you clean them, as moisture encourages bacteria to grow. Use a solution of vinegar and rubbing alcohol on your feet each time you are tending to them. They kill fungus and bacteria respectively.
- Office-wise: Keep a towel, tissues and some hand sanitizer at your kiosk in office. Each time you wade in; use water-soaked tissues to wipe your feet clean. Use the dry towel to wipe dry, and gently massage your feet with a good quantity of hand sanitiser, to disinfect them. It’s a good idea to invest in a few pairs of patent or plastic shoes which are well-ventilated, just for this season. While plastic is not the best material to slip into, it dries fast. Try to avoid closed shoes, as they entrap the water. Try slippers or open toed wedges, or your trusted Crocs, so that the water has an outlet to flow out through. Keep a spare pair in your office drawer. Slip into them when you’re done with your foot first-aid.
- Dry up: Step out of your wet footwear as soon as you reach your destination. If your feet refuse to dry up, you could rub talcum powder, corn starch, or baking soda on them – or a mix of all three. Talcum absorbs moisture, corn starch absorbs sweat and baking soda keeps the foot skin alkaline, making the habitat inhospitable for germs.
- Wear and care: It’s important to take as much care of your footwear as of your foot. Wear cotton socks and wash them after each wear, turning them inside out to make sure that the dirt and dead skin is removed from the surface that will be in immediate contact with your foot. Synthetic materials trap moisture, so they’re a complete no-no. Wipe your shoes clean before airing them out for the next wear. If you’ve committed the blasphemy of wearing your keds or sneakers out on a rainy day, make sure they get some TLC when you get back home. Take the insole out, give it for a wash and dry it thoroughly. Air the shoes all night under the fan. Once they dry up, add little balls of newspaper inside, so they absorb any residual moisture. You could also sprinkle baking soda inside them.
Lastly, trim your nails nice and neat at regular intervals so that gunk has no room to wriggle into. Go ahead now, look after those foot soldiers!
FAB BAG PICKS for happy feet
This foot salt helps relax sore muscles. It softens the water and moisturizes your skin. It also has great anti-septic and anti-fungal properties. Free from all harmful chemicals like PARABENS, SULPHATES, PETROCHEMICALS etc. CLICK HERE to view product.
A combination of Shea Butter to improve circulation, Kokum Butter to heal damaged and dry skin, and Cocoa Butter to moisturize and remove that dreadful sock tan and blended Virgin Coconut Oil to leave your feet supple and give you that extra bounce in your step! CLICK HERE to view product.
A good massage and a scrub to the tired hands and feet is just what you need from time to time for relaxing. The invigorating orange hand and foot Gel scrub is enriched with oils and has almond scrub in it. It offers SPA protection and also is a gentle exfoliator. CLICK HERE to view product.