Today’s Spring series covers one of those pesky little maintenance tasks you need to do to get in shape for summer. Fear not, we’re simply tackling your tootsies today with my tips for an easy (and budget friendly) DIY manicure that will look as good as any salon trip, with a little effort.
First up, get your equipment together. You will need:
Somewhere to soak your feet, the bath is ideal but you could relocate to the sofa and use a washing up bowl!
A coarse body scrub and/or exfoliating gloves.
Nail varnish remover (if necessary).
Nail clippers, cuticle stick and nail file.
Moisturiser (and cuticle oil if you have it).
Nail base coat, polish and top coat.
First off remove any polish you are wearing and soak your feet in warm water with a splash of your favourite bath product.
Using either a decent dollop of scrub, or wearing the exfoliating mitts, scrub your feet all over, focusing on area’s of hard skin such as the heel, and around the nails.
Rinse, towel dry and cut your nails whilst soft.
Clean under the nail and apply moisturiser to the whole foot.
Apply cuticle oil if you have it (moisturiser will do) and proceed to gently push the cuticles back.
This next step is amongst the most important for results – filing the nail makes the pedicure appear professional as your nails get a lovely neat and tidy shape so spend some time on this, creating a nice square nail and smoothing the corners.
Dry the nails themselves with a damp towel and paint them. Set some time aside and do a proper job starting with base coat, then 2 coats of colour and seal with a top coat. Allow to dry properly so you don’t smudge the nail.
For extra dry feet (and only if you are sure the colour is dry), apply a thick layer of moisturiser and pop some socks on overnight for super smooth feet.
One of the hardest things about this time of year is trying to dress appropriately. I always find myself desperate to try new trends and don spring-like shades, but when the weather is unpredictable there’s nothing worse than being caught in a hailstorm wearing pastels with drenched feet in impractical ballet flats.
Nonetheless, I have figured out a few ways to keep me happy by buying a few key items that merge seamlessly with my winter staples but blend into spring. Here are my must-haves and tips to wear them now and later.
It’s no coincidence the majority of these picks are from GAP, they play a blinder every spring with brights and stripes – perfect for your spring wardrobe and the price is always right with sales and spring discounts. I also used navy as my key basic neutral as I have tons of it, but you can switch for your preferred neutral, just make sure to adjust the colours you choose too.
Jumper, jeans, tee and scarf, all GAP // Bertie Aztec ballet flat. // Gold Brogues, ALDO
My key spring wardrobe update is a pair of coloured skinny jeans. I chose coral (this pair is rather fabulously named ‘neon flamingo’,) because it’s pretty and bright and works really well with winter neutrals. Team it with a grey or navy winter woolly now and a breton striped tee later.
Everybody needs stripes in their spring wardrobe, but they’re often of the t-shirt variety and when there’s a nip in the air they might not be sufficient to keep you warm. If the budget stretches buy a tee and look out for a knit too. Wear a tee under your parka while it’s cold and switch for your jumper as it warms up a little. You can layer this one up now with your regular jeans (I bought the coral stripe to wear with my usual dark wash jeans, but the navy works brilliantly with these coral skinnies,) and later on the beach with a pair of denim cut off shorts.
Pick up a bright scarf or belt. The best investment you can make, you can wear a scarf in new season colours or prints with everything from a big coat now that you’re tired of your winter scarf, right through to layered with a light jacket or vest in warmer weather. Choose brights or tribal and ikat inspired patterns to stay on trend.
Lastly, pick out some fun shoes. I snapped up these gold brogues (in the Aldo sale now) for when it’s colder and I want to keep my toes covered up, and also a pair of pointed suede effect ballet flats in the Dorothy Perkins mid-season sale with 30% off for a smarter look on warmer days and work.
Have you picked up any transitional pieces yet this spring?
Last autumn, I created a list of thing I wanted to do in the coming months and I think it helped me embrace the season and make the most of all the joy it brings, so I decided to make it a bi-annual event and write a spring list too.
I think everybody loves spring. It’s a close call which season is my favourite if I’m honest but as winter is definitely my least favourite there’s something joyous about emerging into longer days, spring sunshine, bright colours and lighter food. Join in by making your list in the comments section below and just for fun go back and see if you managed any of your planned Autumn escapades.
Here’s a list of the things I’ll be trying to squeeze in this spring…
Take a trip to the seaside and walk in the wind on the beach.
Go daffodil spotting on a long walk.
Eat spring lamb in a gastro pub somewhere pretty.
Celebrate Easter with chocolate recipes and mini-eggs.
Get back to regular exercise as the nights get lighter and start running again.
Tidy up and re-arrange the back garden to make it ready for al fresco dining.
Start growing seeds for the allotment.
Take a trip to London to catch up with blog buddies and friends.
Remember what the sun feels like on my skin.
Plan a weekend away for one of the May bank holiday weekends.
After having so much fun with January Joy it feels like another series is in order, this time for Spring. Right now I’m at that in-between phase when spring is most definitely in the air and I’m looking forward to spring fashions, beauty, trends and that positive feeling that lighter nights bring. However, while sub-zero temperatures persist and it’s that little bit too early to opt for shorts or sandals, I’m working on that spring feeling from the comfort of inside my own home.
I always long for a brighter colour palette inside during the spring and summer months and with a neutral interior it’s easy to pick and change the accessories for an instant update. Here are some of my favourite picks to brighten up your home for spring along with my top tips for creating the perfect sanctuary at home.