From the archives: DANCING FEET

Reading this article makes me appreciate the convenience of modern life just a little bit more…

Topics of Interest to WOMEN AT HOME
DANCING FEET
By A WOMAN CHEMIST
Weekly Irish Times; Dec 22, 1934, p14

To enjoy dancing and to look graceful it is essential that the feet are very fit. They must be fresh and without such troubles as corns, chilblains or tender spots. Another important point is that the skin of the feet and legs is soft, otherwise the thin dance stocking will suffer.

To soften the skin the feet and legs should be bathed daily with a solution composed of one part glycerine to two of warm water.

If there is any tenderness near the heel, cold cream should be applied, and if there is even a trace of a scratch a touch of iodine solution must be painted on. The latter is also very effective for chilblains, so a small bottle should always be handy in case of need.

If the ankles are too thick they must have a little massage applied daily. The fingertips must be lubricated with plenty of French chalks then the ankles must be well kneaded by them; secondly; a circular movement must be applied all round the ankle-bone. In addition to these movements, the entire foot should be rubbed all over to stimulate it and assist it to throw off its waste matter.

A useful powder for the dancing girl’s feet can be prepared by mixing together ten grains of tannic acid, ten graius [sp?] of orris root, and two teaspoonfuls of rice powder.

A little of the powder should be dusted into the inside of the stockings, as well as on to the soles of the feet. The same powder can be applied to the palms of the hands – it is an excellent all-round anti-perspiration powder for everywhere, except the face.

A useful liquid powder to whiten arms that are too red can be prepared from oxide of zinc, glycerine and rice powder. Once drachm of rice powder and two drachms of oxide of zinc must be well mixed together. Half an ounce of glycerine must be added to half an ounce of water, the solution stirred and then the powders dusted in, stirring well all the time.

The arms must be sponged with the lotion, then a flesh-tinted powder must be dusted on, and the arms left to dry.

The girl who does not go out much of an evening must “make up” just as she intends to be at the dance, one evening beforehand. It is necessary for her to see by artificial light just the tint that she wants to use for her hair and eyes. It must be her natural colouring, just a little improved. The blonde a pinkish shade, a brunette more olive. A touch of colour near the eyes lends a sparkle to them, but this is only for youth as it is apt to age the face.

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