From glowing skin to perfectly pedicured toes, get summer-perfect gams.
Summer-ready legs 101
Warm weather calls for short shorts, strappy sandals and endless hours spent outdoors. But before you hit the streets, ensure your legs are in tip top shape with these four simple steps and our favourite products for getting healthy, glowing skin and perfectly pedicured toes.
Prep your gams
One of the most important steps to achieving smooth, even-toned legs is
to exfoliate before shaving — if you only remember one thing from these
tips, this should be it!
Dampen your legs and massage a gentle exfoliator over them in a circular motion (for added benefit, use a brush!) Pay extra attention to areas that are prone to dry skin, like knees and ankles. This clears away dull, dead skin, leaving softer glowing skin beneath that's primed for shaving. (If you plan on applying a sunless tanner, this step will help you get an even application and ensures your tan lasts even longer.) It also promotes circulation and reduces cellulite.
Try: Kiehl's Ultimate Man Body Scrub Soap. It contains pumice and oat kernel, providing a deep scrub, and soothing oatmeal, making it perfect for normal to sensitive skin.
After leaving your legs under running water for a few minutes to soften
the hair, lather them with shaving cream, coating the entire leg evenly.
Shaving cream, as opposed to water or regular soap, is important for creating a smooth surface for the razor to glide over, which helps prevent cuts and razor burn. (Caught in a pinch without shaving cream? Try conditioner as a replacement!)
Shave in the opposite direction of the hair growth and apply even pressure. For tricky areas, like knees and ankles, take your time and shave in shorter strokes. Reapply shaving cream as necessary and once complete, rinse off excess shaving cream and run your legs under cold water, which closes the pores and ensures a long-lasting shave.
Try: Forget the 'It Bag' and meet the 'It Razor': Schick Intuition Naturals comes with a conditioning solid packed with Aloe to soothe skin and Vitamin E to nourish it. It's designed to work without shaving cream, but test it out on your skin and add cream if necessary.
Don't forget to moisturize after shaving! This is especially important if you have sensitive skin and are prone to razor burn.
Dry your legs and apply cream (body butters are great for dry skin), again making sure to pay special attention to dry areas (knees and feet!) If you're looking to boost your summer glow, wait 30 minutes or so after moisturizing and then apply a sunless tanner.
For first time users, start off with a small amount (about a nickel in size) and work into skin in circular motions, avoid the knees and ankles till the very end. Skin Finishing Expert Nichola Joss from St. Tropez recommends using a tanning mitt to buff around these areas, using less product.
She also shared a helpful tip for removing smudges: use oil and an exfoliator to gently buff away smudge lines and blend colour.
Try: St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Spray, for a natural-looking glow. It's light and easy to apply thanks to 360° spray technology. And don't forget a bronzing mitt!
To ensure your legs are perfect from top to bottom, treat yourself to an at-home pedicure.
While in the shower, after your skin has softened up, go to town on your soles with a foot buffer or callus stone, especially where you've noticed rougher skin. Once out of the shower, when your feet are completely dry, trim and file nails. Follow up with a moisturizer (this is a good task for TV nights when you won't be up on your feet!)
When your skin is still soft, push back your cuticles using a manicure stick. Give your nails a quick swipe of polish remover to clean the surface and then apply a base coat, your polish and a top coat.
Give your nails plenty of drying time between each coat (approximately ten minutes) clean up any smudges with a Q-tip dipped in polish remover.
Try: For an update on your favourite neutral polishes, try the new metallic collection from Essie that bring a little shine to your toes.
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