‘The worse the feet, the happier it makes me. I love a challenge’

Marian Keyes and her Sudden Wild Enthusiasms: Elena’s Foot Facial

People’s afflictions are legion: misshapen, brittle, thick or missing nails, fungal infections, corns, callouses, ingrown toenails and hard skin that just won’t give up

People’s afflictions are legion: misshapen, brittle, thick or missing nails, fungal infections, corns, callouses, ingrown toenails and hard skin that just won’t give up

 

A few weeks ago I wrote about my terrible, terrible feet. That column contained a warning that if you’ve a “thing” about feet, to read no further. That warning also applies today.

However, if you think you have the worst feet in the world, pull up a chair.

Firstly, I can assure you that you don’t have the worst feet in the world, that honour is mine. Secondly, help is at hand.  

Welcome to the Safe Space that is Pretty Nails, Pretty Face in Stillorgan where Elena Manta will greet your appalling feet with compassion. She’s unshockable. “The worse the feet,” she says, “the happier it makes me. I love a challenge.”

Using the latest technology and products from Germany, her decades of experience and her own special magic, Elena has assembled a portfolio of highly effective treatments that will be customised according to the particular afflictions of your feet.

And people’s afflictions are legion: misshapen, brittle, thick or missing nails, fungal infections, corns, callouses, ingrown toenails, hard skin that just won’t quit . . .

Consultation

We started with a consultation, and do you mind if I don’t go into too much detail about mine (the shame is too great)? (But if I tell you that I’d be very handy on a desert island because I could start a fire simply by rubbing the soles of my feet together, you’ll get some idea.)

Using her high-tech German instruments, Elena honed, whetted, scoured and burnished my trotters,  eventually revealing two startlingly soft pink feet.

Now, another mortifying admission: for complicated reasons, I was missing most of a toenail. Unfazed, Elena created a prosthetic nail using a product similar to that used in white dental fillings. (It’s spelt Unguisan but pronounced WinkySun, which would be a great name if Gwyneth Palthrow had another nipper.) My new nail looks nothing like a glue-on faker that could snap off at any time; but, rather, it’s robust, convincing and so bonded it can’t be removed by a lay person.    

My foot shame is all about vanity. But a lot of Elena’s customer suffer from painful feet (corns, and so on) and she promises painless treatments and (eventually) painfree feet. A lot of her customers are men.  

I’m sent home with a footcream from German brand Baehr, which offers a wide variety, treating myriad issues from athlete’s foot to brittle, flaky skin. Many are suitable for people with diabetes. Elena’s Foot Facial is so much more than a pedicure, as my currently smug refurbished feet will attest.    

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