Friday, January 14, 2011

Step by Step Pedicure - or MAN-icure

So I'm sitting on the floor just because, taking off my polish. My boyfriend is sitting in the computer chair next to me and I say to him "man you need your feet done." His nails were long and gangly (I swear they actually grow with sharp edges) and I can't stand to let them get too far out of hand. I had really just sat down, but he puts his feet out for me, gets comfy, and waits for me to do his feet lol. He acts like he doesn't care and actually would prefer for me not to groom him in such ways, but here he is wanting them done and wanting them done now haha.
I snapped a picture of him, but he wasn't having it. Not to worry, he promptly fell asleep *evil grin*.

Here is what I do every time I get ready to paint my toenails, or in this case, when I groom my boyfriend's feet :P. It includes trimming the nails, cleaning under the nails, pushing back the cuticles and getting rid of dead ones, filing the nails, then rubbing lotion on. My tools include an assortment of different files, large toenail clippers, my awesome multi-colorful smaller clippers, metal cuticle tool, and lotion.

Here are some closeups of my favorite tools:

Step 1:
Trim the nails - self explanatory. You want to get it to the length and shape you want, but it's still pretty general. The filing is for perfecting the shape and smoothing out those straight edges often created by nail clippers.

Step 2:
Clean under nails - It's amazing how much gunk can collect under a nail, especially a toenail. Women almost always have nicer looking, better kept, and cleaner feet. So you can only imagine how it can get doing a man's feet. I use my metal cuticle tool for this, the pointy end. You can also use an orange stick, the flip out tool on most nail clippers, and I find things like tooth picks particularly helpful. Not only is it important to get out any dirt, dead skin, or sock fuzz, but I also use this step to round out the edge of the nail bed. You can't always make it perfect, but it usually helps. Just gently press your tool of choice up under the nail, sweeping slowly from side to side, smoothing out the line where the pink fleshy part of your nail bed ends. It shouldn't hurt at all. I actually find that it feels good, like it's relieving some sort of pressure.

Step 3:

Cuticles - This is where you push back the cuticles to make them look neat, get rid of the dead bits, and in most cases make room for the polish. When you start to push them back you'll notice a thin layer of dead cuticle in front of it that should be coming off. I find this satisfying...knowing I'm getting rid of all that dead skin. I also like to run my tool gently along the top of the cuticle. This sometimes produces an entire line of dead cuticle you didn't know was there. See, it's kind of fun!

Step 4:
Filing - This is important to get rid of the sharp edges that are almost always left by nail clippers and to have a finished look. On toes, whether it be men or women, I pretty much always do a nice rounded nail. I have quite a few different files, including a metal one with a handle, a "tough and gritty" for big toes and tough projects, the cute foam ones with colored sanding paper on each side, and a really cheap one you can get in packs of about 50 for $1. I have also used a crystal file, which I quite liked...but I lost it. If it was the only file you used, it's a great file, but I'd recommend one with a tiny pointed tip for those hard to reach areas. Want to know what type of file is my favorite? The super freakin' cheap ones. They're thin, flexible, have a regular grit on one side and a fine grit on the other, and are so cheap you don't have to worry about losing them or tossing them. I like to keep one in all sorts of different places (bedside table, backpack, car, purse, etc).

Step 5:
Lotion - I don't know anyone who has perfectly moisturized feet without ever putting lotion on. Aside from avoiding dry skin, I think it's an important finishing touch. It really keeps your cuticles moist and get's rid of any residue left from filing or dealing with the cuticles. I love the scented lotions, but on his I used a nice dry skin repair lotion with no scent.


Done! From the pictures the most obvious thing is the nail length. You can really see the dry skin around the toes and the awful dead cuticles in the above pictures. In the after picture, though, we have a nice groomed and moisturized foot :D.
What do you think?


  1. This was super informative! What a lucky boyfriend.

  2. Ah thank you! I was sad I didn't get any comments on this until now. I thought it was cool lol...And I love doing his feet. I spend at least a good 30 minutes on them and do them maybe every two weeks. He'll be going on deployment soon so I won't get to do his toes for ages! He'll come back with talons!

  3. i can't believe he let you do them, mine won't let me near his...:( i think he's scared I won't be able to resist with the polish.;)

  4. I have not been able to resist once or twice haha. He actually let me swatch one nail the other day.


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