-- Buy rigid shoes. If you take a shoe you’d like to buy in your hands, with one hand on the toe and one on the heel, and try to twist it, the shoe should stay rigid, or nearly so. Ballet flats are the worst for foot health. In addition, it’s good to have your feet measured from time to time, because your shoe size changes occasionally, such as during and after pregnancy.
-- Watch your heel height. If women have heels over two inches in height, it changes the way they walk. In fact, a three-inch heel increases the amount of pressure on the bottom of the foot seven-fold. “That’s why I recommend people wear a variety of heel heights,” Reid said. “Even in your late 20s, early 30s, you can lose the fat padding on the bottom of your feet. People don’t know that their problems are right around the corner, not decades away.”
-- The “nothing fits me” dilemma. People with this problem may need custom orthotics, or foot-supporting insoles. It also helps to know which one of the three foot types your are: high-arch, low-arch or normal. People with high arches do well in heels. “I have a friend who says she can run in heels,” Reid said. Those possessing low arches have difficulty in heels because they don’t get enough stability.
-- Moisturizers and pummel stones. It’s good to moisturize your feet on a daily basis. Overly dry skin can generate difficulties such as calluses and heel problems. It’s also wise to use a pummel stone once a week. If you happen to be prone to ingrown toenails, make sure to cut off the entire nail corner with a straight-edged nail clipper.
-- Pedicures. These are OK, but at-home pedicures are even better. However, if you have an ingrown nail, it’s better to let an expert try to get it out.