Beauty is in the eye of the beholder...and those of us holding the mascara wand.

After two decades of covering the beauty industry, I've come to learn what makes it so alluring. Finding the perfect shade of makeup to match your skin tone, adding a swipe of eyeliner to give your tired eyes a lift, discovering an innovative new product line, or indulging in a totally luxurious spa treatment. My experiences have been documented in magazines, newspapers and websites worldwide. I've tested newly formulated products in the lab, explored hair removal options, shopped for lipstick, added shine to my hair and succumbed to massage marathons--all in the name of beauty. I've written press releases, hosted makeover events and co-authored a Do-It-Yourself Beauty book (Alloy). On this blog, I write about products and services that I come across every day as well as those that have been provided by publicists or the companies that make them. Either way, I write what I think. I hope to share some of my insights--and bring you the latest, greatest beauty news right here. Join me in the quest to find all things pretty.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

expert advice: Elle, Barielle's celebrity manicurist, keep us on our toes when it comes to foot care

I got these great new flip flops for summer and started wearing them every day. I loved the style and the comfort factor but some problems began to brew (more on the flip flops later). My feet turned black and I had to scrub them every night to get the color off. Plus, since I was wearing open shoes every day, my feet--which were exposed to the elements and the grime of New York City streets--began to crack. Before I knew it, I was in bad shape. I had no clue how to nurse my feet back to health so I called on Elle, Barielle's celebrity manicurist, for some expert advice. Thanks to her tips--and Barielle's AMAZING foot products--my feet looked and felt rejuvenated overnight (no joke!). Here's her advice for taking are of your tootsies all summer long.

Prettyisprettydoes: What can you do to take care of your feet in the summer? What's the minimum you should do if you're short on time?
Elle: Pedicures are a great to help take care of your feet for the summer. Avoid the jet chairs that spew bacteria that cause a multitude of problems for your skin and health. Keep a foot file in your shower and afterward slough off dead skin and rinse feet! I love Barielle’s 60 Second Mani-Pedi which exfoliates with Dead Sea Salts and nourishes with essential oils.

PIPD: What can you do to keep your feet moisturized, soft and smooth or get them back to that point if they are dry/cracked etc?
E: Use a moisturizer meant for this problem and always use a damp foot file to remove skin. Remove, moisturize!

PIPD: Why does the skin on your feet crack? What can we do to prevent it?
E: Flat shoes displace the fat pad on our heels so this can cause cracking. To prevent it, wear comfortable shoes and slough off skin with a foot file. Do not get pedicures in the salon! The bacteria will go into those cracks and then you will need to go to a derm to get the problem fixed!

PIPD: How can we avoid getting calluses?
E: Calluses form to protect your feet. To avoid them, wear comfortable shoes! Make sure they’re padded and protect your feet!

PIPD: What kind of shoes should we wear to protect our feet? Is it OK to wear open flip flops or sandals when it's too hot to cover up?
E: Flats are too flat, heels hurt--be as comfortable as you can. Yes, it's OK to wear flip flops or sandals but they displace the fat pad which again, can lead to cracking. Make sure to file feet in the shower to avoid this!

PIPD: What other tips can you recommend for keeping your feet smooth in summer?
E: My protocol is: In the shower, I scrub w/ 60 Second Mani-Pedi, then moisturize with Total Foot Care Cream. For people who have more callused feet, use the heel & callus treatment cream. Also I suggest moisturizing your feet at night and sleeping with socks on to keep in the moisture in all night long.

To save your feet some stress, use these Barielle products regularly:
Barielle Total Foot Care Cream, $19.50
Intensive Foot Cream with Deep Sea Mud, $24
60-Second Mani Pedi, $25
Heel and Callus treatment, $22

There aren't many miracles in beauty...Barielle is one of them. See for yourself at