Keeping your feet in good health matters more than you think. “Feet are the foundation of your skeleton,” says podiatrist Jacqueline Sutera, DPM, a Vionic Innovation Lab member. “Foot injury or disease can often lead to compensation in other areas of the body, which will compromise overall health.” And keeping your feet in tip-top shape goes way beyond just giving yourself a pedi.
Dr. Sutera says there are four different systems she checks for overall foot health: orthopedic (bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, and tendons), dermatological (skin and nails), vascular (artery and vein circulation), and nervous (the nerves in the feet).
It’s important to keep the skin on your feet (and your toenails, too) healthy and intact, she says, noting that compromised tissue can let in bacteria, viruses, and fungus—and those microbes can spread up the leg and into the body. But keep an eye on what’s going on beyond the way your feet look, Dr. Sutera says. “Circulation or blood flow is essential. If your legs and feet have decreased circulation, even small infections—like ingrown toenails, blisters, callouses, cuts, or splinters—can lead to limb and life-threatening infections,” she says. “And when it comes to the nervous system, the nerves in your feet are also responsible for balance, as well as temperature and pain indicators.”
In order to make sure your feet are healthy all-around, use Dr. Sutera’s top tools for foot care. From a leg massager to foot scrubber, they’ll never look—or feel!—better.
The 5 best tools for foot care, according to a podiatrist
1. Ikeepi Leg Massager, $82
There’s one key reason why Dr. Sutera is a fan of this leg and calf massager: “It helps relax your muscles and reduces swelling in your legs, ankles, and feet,” she says.
This is Dr. Sutera’s favorite foot file. “It’s battery operated and has a rotating file, which goes in one direction to help smooth skin,” she says. “You can also control the pressure, and I recommend a ‘less is more’ approach.”
If you’re not already applying a foot cream every day, Dr. Sutera says to do so after using the foot file. “Amlactin has lactic acid, which exfoliates and moisturizes at the same time. This will really keep your feet smooth, and it can also be rubbed on cuticles to keep them soft,” she says.
4. Nekteck Foot Massager with Heat, $63
There’s nothing like a great foot massage, and this heated option will bring on all the feel-good vibes—not to mention some health benefits. “Using a massager like this for feet can help to reduce pain and tension,” she says.
5. MAGIC FOOT SCRUBBER, $17
This tool might not be the best option for anyone with ticklish feet, but it does wonders. “Using a foot brush a few times a week in the shower can help slough dead skin, keep nails healthy, and boost circulation, all while keeping your feet clean,” Dr. Sutera says. So if you needed a few good reasons to kick up your feet, consider these a worthy addition to your self-care rituals.
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