Steamcream was founded with one clear mission: to Make Skincare Simple. Now that we’re heading into the colder months, our skin is crying out for extra hydration, as well as being in need of a circulation boost.
Turn your daily bathroom routine into a spa stay-cation with the help of Steamcream and some easy-to-follow at-home massage techniques to keep skin healthy all year round. This first blog focuses specifically on self-care for your feet & legs.
- Foot Massage
Foot massage has been around for centuries (just ask the Egyptians!) and is known for its incredible health benefits – our feet are often referred to as our ‘second heart’. To treat cold feet, rough heels and sore soles, try this end-of-day foot massage:
- Add one blueberry-sized amount of STEAMCREAM into the palm of each hand, then warm hands together.
- With the palms, apply with firm pressure to the soles of both feet, then knead in with your thumbs.
- Firmly push your thumb between each toe to separate them. Massage the tension away in each toe with your thumb and forefinger with strong pressure.
- Make a fist shape, using your knuckles to gently massage from the base of your toes, across the soles to your heels. Repeat 10 times.
- To finish, rub the sole of your foot with your palm.
2. 'Burning Sole' Massage
Do you ever feel like the soles of your feet are burning on a night you wear unfamiliar shoes, or when you’ve been wearing shoes all day? The soles of your feet may feel like they're 'burning', but this symptom can in fact be caused by poor circulation or a cold body. Poor blood circulation in the body slows the movement of blood and induces coldness in the body. In order to warm the body and improve blood circulation, the soles of the feet may become almost feverish.
As blood flow slows, and the soles of the feet (at the extremity of the body) may experience a sluggish blood flow, causing them to feel hot. Rather than cooling them down, the soles of your feet may better benefit from being ‘loosened’, removing tension and helping improve blood flow:
- Use around 0.5 ~ 1 blueberry-sized amount on each foot.
- Warm up the cream in the palm of your hands and gently apply to your whole foot.
- Make a fist shape and massage the soles of your feet with your knuckles.
- Supporting the top of your foot with your fingers, use your thumb to apply pressure across your sole. It is not necessary to place too much pressure on the feet, just a comfortable amount.
- Finally, rub the sole of your foot with your palm
3. Heel Care
Have you ever noticed that your heels can become very rough and dry? Embarrassing when wearing sandals in the summer, and infuriating (and time-consuming) when they catch on your tights or socks during the winter...
The heel has a very thick stratum corneum, nearly 100 times thicker than the skin on the face. Due to this thickness, the skin turnover cycle takes longer. The ideal turnover time for the face is 28 days, but the turnover period for the heel is in excess of 90 days.
Many people will find their heels are harder and drier than the rest of their body when they touch them. This is how it should be, as there are no sebaceous glands on the soles of the feet. The scalp, face and other parts of the body have sebaceous glands, and the secretion of sebum acts as a barrier to the skin to help prevent dryness. The heels, however, have no such barrier function.
They do, however, have sweat glands, but the lack of oil (sebum) causes the secreted sweat to evaporate. This is why we recommend regular heel care, as the heel has an inability to maintain moisture by itself.
- Use the equivalent amount of around 1 blueberry of Steamcream (or any moisturiser/ body cream) on each heel.
- Sitting down, rest your foot across your thigh. Put SC on the palm of your hand, place your palms together and warm the cream
- Place your palm on your heel and gently apply the cream. Apply to the other heel in the same way.
- Cover your heels with socks for around 30 minutes after application, which allows the cream to be absorbed into your skin without being rubbed off.
4. De-puff swollen calves and ankles
The calf plays an important role in returning the blood that has flowed to the feet back to the heart. It is said that when the calf’s blood circulation slows, it is said to cause swelling and impact your physical health. A massage to loosen the calf muscles may encourage blood flow and help remove unwanted fluid and waste material.
This massage does not require strong pressure, just light pressure or gentle massaging using your palm or fingers is effective:
- Use a two blueberry-sized amount of STEAMCREAM on each calf.
- Warm up in the palm of your hands.
- Apply the warmed cream with your palm from your ankle to your calf.
- Place your hand in a fist shape and tap your calf with the thumb-end of your fist.
- Place your open palm against your calf and rub it in an upwards motion.
- With your fingers, apply pressure while pressing from your ankle to your calf.
- Knead the calf with the palm of your hand.
5. Thigh Massage
Do your thighs ever feel cold when you touch them? The thigh is an area with muscles, but when the muscle is lost it can easily build up as fat in this area. Poor blood circulation in the legs tends to cause swelling and a feeling of cold, and a well-pressured massage using the palm of your hand will help with trim thighs that are less likely to swell.
Encourage lymphatic drainage in an area often prone to cellulite:
- Use the equivalent of one to two cherry-sized amounts of cream on each calf.
- Warm up in the palm of your hands and apply from your knee up to your groin.
- Gently rub the back of the knee. There are lymph nodes on the back of the knee and massaging them can help expel unwanted waste.
- Put both palms on your thigh and rub strongly in a twisting motion, almost like you’re squeezing a towel. Go from the thigh up to the groin area.
Please note, STEAMCREAM can support massage techniques but does not itself improve blood circulation, swelling or promote slimming.