…and often carry on after a day’s shift with looking after our families and homes. This can really play havoc not only on our feet but also our stress levels! Further more, did you know a whopping 70% of women are enhancing any problems by wearing ill-fitting shoes? All in all – over-tired, aching feet can lead to soreness, swollen ankles and even bad posture and back problems.
So what can we do?
Here are some tried and tested treats for your hard-working tootsies at the end of a busy day – which by their relaxing nature will help you mentally unwind too. So let’s get started…
Treat your aching feet to a good soaking
It may seem like stating the obvious, but how many of us take the time to regularly do this? When it comes to giving your feet a treat, a good soak will indeed do wonders. Not only will the (hand hot) water soothe tired muscles, you can add a handful of Epsom or sea salt to help reduce swelling and puffiness.
For an aromatic extra boost, add a few drops of essential oils to further enhance the benefits.
Here are some good choices:
- Sandalwood – anti-inflammatory, relaxing and calming
- Ylang Ylang – antiseptic, relieves stress
- Lavender – relaxing and calming
- Peppermint – invigorating, cooling and calming
- Eucalyptus – anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and stimulating
- Lemon – antibacterial and antifungal
- Sesame – antibacterial and anti-inflammatory
- Rose – antiseptic and relieves stress
- Basil – antibacterial and relieves stress
Getting rid of dead/hard skin can leave your feet feeling soft and refreshed – so after you’ve had a good soak, get the pumice stone out!
Not enough time to sit with your aching feet in a bowl? Then try treating your feet to a scrub/mask combo. Here are a couple of ideas to get you started:
- Mix a tablespoon each of brown sugar, baking soda and olive oil and create a thick paste. Scrub your feet with the mix, leave it to soak in for ten minutes and then wash it off with warm water.
- Alternatively try mixing together a tablespoonful each of brown sugar, sea (or Epsom) salt and baby oil and use as above.
(If using oil-based substances on your feet – be careful not to slip afterwards!).
Here’s a cooling and deodorising mix you can make in advance to use at a later date (within a week):
- Lime and mint refresher – mix 2 tablespoons of sea (or Epsom) salt with 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Add 3-4 drops of lime and peppermint essential oils. Blend together into a paste by adding olive oil and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
DIY exercises for relaxing feet
Use any of these exercises both during and at the end of the day to relax your aching feet at any time:
- Sit on a chair with feet hip-width apart and take your shoes off ideally if you can. Slowly draw your feet underneath your chair, flipping them over so the top of your foot is next to the floor. Gently press the tops of your toes/feet into the floor to feel the stretch on the tops of your feet.
- Stand up and hold the back of your chair for support, then tip-toe, lifting your heels off the floor and stretching your soles. Now relax your foot back down. Now lift your toes off the floor, keeping your heels on the ground and stretching your calf muscles. Repeat this several times, making a slow rocking motion.
- Finally, never underestimate the power of a tennis ball! Always have one to hand, as they’re great to roll back and forth, under your foot. Make sure you cover the entire base of your foot, from toes to heel. You can even replace the tennis ball with a frozen bottle of water – perfect at the end of a hot summers’ day!