- As open toe and heel season approach, I’m starting to actively think of foot care as part of my skincare routine
- Have your tried those aggressive foot peels out there that promise baby soft feet?
- Harsh artificial removal of dead skin cells on feet can cause thicker and harder skin to grow back so be careful!
With summer looming around the corner, I find my attention slowly turning downwards. My two feet – possibly the most under-rated loyal servants in my entire body. They keep me steady, balanced and grounded. They take me everywhere I need to go and assist in quick escapes despite rarely being appreciated or cared for.
Especially during cold weather when they are covered up in cozy socks, it’s easy to forget about them entirely. But now as open toe and heel season approach, I’m starting to actively think of them as part of my skincare routine…and I need a solid plan!
Besides general circulation issues, I have a couple of concerns when it comes to my feet and skincare. First, my toe nails. I used to get regular pedicures or otherwise fuss over the color and shape of my nails. However, my recent decision to let go of nail polish has made this problem naturally go away for me.
The other issue is tougher – literally. I suffer from callus and rough dead skin, especially on my heels. I’ve been tempted and have tried those aggressive foot peels out there that promise you your baby soft feet back.
You put on these feet masks for about an hour or so, then around day five your skin will start to peel like crazy revealing baby soft skin on your feet within two weeks. Based on my personal experience, the peeling process is pretty gross and cumbersome, but they work – by the end of the peeling process, your feet will emerge softer than you can ever remember them.
I loved the immediate results, but this reminded me of the old “monkey and his shoes” story. Have you ever heard the fable about the monkey who didn’t need shoes, but started buying and wearing shoes sold by the cunning fox…only to end up with super soft baby feet that now couldn’t survive without shoes?
Of course, once the monkey became reliant on shoes, the fox jacked up the prices…and herein lies a critical skincare lesson. Never adopt aggressive measures that make your skin hyper-sensitive, weak or overly reliant. This is why I stay away from harsh chemical peels or lasers that can wipe away sunspots … and I ultimately decided to stay away from these baby foot masks too.
Dr. Yoon says, “harsh artificial removal of dead skin cells on feet can cause secondary infections or actually cause thicker and harder skin to grow back." Therefore, he recommends gentle exfoliation coupled with diligent moisturizing to prevent dryness and cracks on heels.
Following this advice, I’ve given up all baby foot packs. Instead, I exfoliate with a foot filing tool once a week during my shower (the current one I use looks almost like a cheese grater and was only $8 on amazon but works like a charm!). Once I step out of the shower, I make sure to apply a thick layer of moisturizer, focusing on my heels and toes.
If you have cracked heels or particularly thick calluses, you might consider buying a foot cream that contains the ingredient urea. Dr. Yoon recommends applying urea cream at night, and then sealing it up by wearing sleep socks or saran wrap over the cream to bed.
You might not wake up with baby feet, but chances are you’ll wake up with feet that aren’t too soft but soft enough – a more sustainable and manageable skincare routine.