All the tips and tricks needed to shape up for 2012. Each day brings new, expert advice on how to look your best and live life to the fullest, while having a little fun doing it.
They're the parts of your body you use most, but oftentimes they're the parts most neglected. Of course, proper maintenance requires a certain balance—you don't want to look like you ignore these important appendages, but you don't want to look like you spend too much time fussing over them either. Herewith, a simple guide to hand and feet care.
Long nails make you look at best, lazy or at worst, a recluse who rarely leaves the house. Jagged, chewed-up nails make you look like an animal. In the shower, push back your cuticles (the skin-like tissue covering the base of the nail) using the back of your thumbnail. After your shower, while the nails are still soft, trim them with a pair of quality clippers (right). The white tip of the nail should be no longer than the width of a dime. Any shorter and you won't be able to pick up a dime. Filing down the corners of the nails isn't necessary but offers a nice, professional finish.
Tweezerman makes a fine stainless steel set for $10 that comes with free sharpening for life. The toe clipper makes straighter cuts, while the smaller version for hands makes slightly rounded cuts.
Zwilling makes a handy and durable ceramic nail file, $10, that retains its grit nicely and folds up like a pocket knife.
No one will notice your nails if your hands are red, cracked and dry. A daily application of an emollient hand cream is the easiest way to keep hands healthy and smooth. There are great men's creams out there: Jack Black's Hand Healer, Porter's Lotion and Ahava's ginger-infused hand cream are three hard working options. The best time to apply hand cream? Just before you go to bed.
Amenity's Foot Spray, $32, is a popular one-stop product that minimizes odor and sweat, exfoliates and moisturizes cracked skin, and softens calluses. Plus, the locking spray cap is great for a gym bag.
Feet are often forgotten when it comes to grooming—especially in the winter. But you don't want to frighten people when your shoes come off. After a shower, sand off any rough patches of skin or calluses with a pumice stone, which you can get at any drugstore. Keep ingrown toenails at bay by cutting nails straight across.
Fingernails grow about 0.1 millimeter a day, which means that it takes about five months to fully regenerate.