Transform your feet with a DIY pedicure to see you through sandal season…

If your feet are far from sandal-season ready, don’t fret. With a few great products and some nifty tools, you can totally transform your feet at home with a DIY pedicure that will leave your skin feeling silky soft and your toenails perfectly polished. 

Our advice? If time allows, set the scene with a scented candle* and some relaxing music that will help transform your room into a sumptuous spa. Why not give yourself a DIY manicure at the same time? Another undeniably great skill to master in our experience. 

How to do a pedicure at home – a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Prep your toenails

Step 2: Remove dead skin

Step 3: Soak your feet

Step 4: Cut, shape and buff nails

Step 5: Massage with moisturiser

Step 6: Paint on your polish

Step 7: Finish with cuticle oil

Everything you need to give yourself a pedicure at home 

First things first, make sure you’re equipped with all the right tools to do a pedicure at home. We recommend a foot file or pumice stone, nail file and nail clippers, polish remover and nail polish, as well as cuticle oil and a foot cream. 

Step 1: Prep your toenails 

Start by removing the remnants of your previous pedicure with a nail polish remover and cotton pad. For best results, press the cotton pad onto each nail for a few seconds before swiping it off – this should help remove every last scrap of paint. 

Top tip: If you’re removing gel, lightly buff nails then place a cotton pad soaked in acetone nail polish remover onto each nail and wrap them in foil. Wait 15 minutes before removing and the gel should lift off.

Boots Nail Polish Remover (£2)

• Size: 200ml

Take off your previous paint job with this nail polish remover that’s loaded with vitamin E and grape seed oil to help hydrate nails.

Step 2: Remove dead skin 

Next step? Remove hard, calloused skin with a foot file or a pumice stone. Concentrate on the heels, the balls of the feet and next to your big toe. Use soft, circular motions until skin feels smooth. 

Top tip: Do this step while feet are dry so that you can see the hard skin. When skin’s wet, it’s easy to take off too much and be left with sore, uneven soles.

Boots Smoothing Foot File, £3.59

• Contains fine and coarse sides

A dual-action foot file that features a coarse side to remove hard skin, as well as a fine side to do away with dry patches. Use on clean, dry skin for smoother soles in seconds.

Step 3: Soak your feet 

Our favourite step – fill your bathtub or a large bowl with warm water and add a generous handful of Epsom salts before soaking your feet for a few minutes. The salts help soften the skin. 

Top tip: If your feet are swollen, opt for cool water instead of warm for a refreshing, soothing treat.

Westlab Mindful Epsom Bath Salts with CBD Oil (£6.79)

• Size: 1kg

• 100% natural

• Vegan 

Add a handful of these Epsom salts, blended with frankincense and bergamot essential oils, into your tub or foot spa to soften skin and soothe your senses.

Revlon Pediprep foot spa (£29.99)

• Two removable attachments

• Foot rest and splash guard

• Waterproof control

• Maintains temperature

No tub? No problem. Soak your feet in this Pediprep Spa that boasts two removable attachments – a pumice stone to exfoliate skin and a rolling massager to revive tired feet.

Step 4: Cut, shape and buff nails 

Once feet are dry, grab your nail cutters to trim each nail to your desired length. Then, use a nail file to smooth away any sharp edges. While it’s not essential, using a gentle buffer will help smooth the surface of the nails, too. 

Top tip: File in one direction, as opposed to a back-and-forth motion, as this can cause nail splitting and peeling.

Leighton Denny Large Crystal Nail File (£15.50)

• Size: 195mm
• Crystal nail file 

Step up your filing game with this crystal nail file from Leighton Denny that gently smooths nails for a clean edge that won’t peel or split. 

Boots 4 Way Buffer (£2)

• Nail file and buffer 

Not only does this must-have tool buff your nails in preparation for polish, but it adds shine, shapes the edges, and evens and smooths nails. Clever!

Step 5: Massage with moisturiser

The skin on your soles is much thicker than the skin on your face and so it requires a nourishing thick cream that’s specifically designed for feet and has intensive ingredients that will lock in moisture and help keep those calluses at bay. 

Top tip: Massage as you moisturise to help improve circulation, reduce tension and ease sore muscles. Focus on massaging the arches of your feet, using your thumbs to apply light pressure in a circular motion, then moving up towards your toes, kneading as you go.

Boots Foot Mask, Cream and Scrub Bundle (£10)

• Four-piece set

With two pairs of foot socks – one that features coconut and shea butter to moisturise and another with tea tree and peppermint to revitalise – a foot lotion and a foot scrub, this beauty bundle has everything you need for softer, smoother soles.

Step 6: Paint on your polish 

Now for the fun part: nail polish. Apply a base coat first, then follow with two coats of your chosen colour in thin, even layers. Wait a few minutes before painting on a top coat to seal in the nail polish. To avoid smudges, use toe separators. 

Top tip: Before you start, swipe each nail with an acetone-soaked pad to remove any oils that may stop your polish from sticking.

Essie Nail Colour 99 Mint Candy Apple Nail Polish (£97.99)

• Size: 13.5ml

• Wide brush

Bored of beige and greige? Mix things up with this pastel mint hue from Essie that’s guaranteed to put a spring in your step (ahem).

OPI Top Coat (£13.90)

• Size: 15ml

Up the staying power of your chosen polish with this must-try top coat from OPI that delivers a glossy, protective shine. 

Step 7: Finish with cuticle oil 

Once the polish has dried, massage a few drops of cuticle oil into the base of each nail. This will support the health of the nail and protect the polish for a long-lasting shine. 

Top tip: Apply cuticle oil daily for happier nails that are strong and healthy.

Boots 8-in-1 Recovery Oil (£6)

• Size: 8ml

Brimming with nourishing natural oils and vitamin E, this lightweight oil can help revive dry and damaged nails in a matter of weeks.

And voila! A pro-level pedicure in the comfort of your home that only requires a few tools, your chosen polish and around 30 minutes of free time. For best results, let your toenails dry for as long as possible and if you are stepping outside, opt for sandals or open-toe shoes where possible. 

*Never leave a burning candle unattended. Keep a burning candle out of reach of children and pets.