Foot peel vs DIY foot masks

DIY Foot Mask or Foot Peels?

While the cosmetics industry is constantly reformulating and churning out new and exciting solutions to try on the face, it might not have occurred to you to search for a means of getting that same velvety result on the soles of your feet. This may sound like a crazy concept, but hear us out: your feet bear the brunt of most of your daily activities, and if being exposed to the elements of the outside world will cause dirt and bacteria to seep their way into your pores, imagine how much worse the continuous pressure forced onto the feet can be. This often results in calluses that form on the balls of your feet, leading to cracked, dry, and thick skin. Not exactly the most flattering accompaniment to a pair T o open-toed sandals.

There are actually several methods designed to revert the soles of your feet to their pre-shoes state. If you’re an avid fan of face and sheet masks and are itching to try something new, be prepared to recreate this same experience with your feet. Because exfoliating foot peel masks are most definitely a thing, and the results of using such are said to be life-changing. Sound too good to be true? Keep reading for a comprehensive primer on the dos and don’ts of using a foot peel mask.

What Is a Foot Mask or Peel?

Foot masks are not always peels. Masks – like the DIY foot masks shown below – give quicker results and a moisturizing application. Peels are applied for a bit of time, removed, and then the foot actually peels over the next week or so, removing dirt, dead and dry skin, leaving the feet with essentially a new fresh layer of skin.

A foot peel mask is basically a chemical peel for your feet. These can come packaged in tiny boxes that consist of booties made out of thin, papery material soaked with solution that you’re meant to pull over your feet like socks. Store-bought foot masks will usually contain natural extracts and acids that are designed to exfoliate and moisturize the soles at the same time. The masks themselves are often infused with the same acids found in beloved facial exfoliators, such as lactic acid, salicylic acid, and glycolic acid. These are known for their potency in permeating the top layer of the skin and breaking up dead skin cells.

Store-Bought Peels vs. DIY Foot Masks

When it comes to using store-bought foot peels or DIY foot masks, there are a number of differences. With a foot peel, all you need to do is slide them over your feet, secure the top around the ankle, and leave them on for the recommended amount of time. This could be anywhere from 45 minutes to one hour, depending on the brand. You can even opt to wear socks over of the booties to ensure that the product doesn’t spill out. Immediately after removing the foot masks, you won’t see much of an initial difference.

But don’t let this fool you. As with all good things, these acids need time in order to work their magic. In the next five to seven days that follow, your dry skin will start peeling off your feet. Most people have compared this experience to being like a snake shedding its skin, which while not the most endearing of mental images, surely means that the product is doing its job. Try not to pick at the peeling skin and allow it to fall away naturally. This can be a rather alarming sight for those of you who have never experienced it before, but rest assured that you will be pleased with the results. If the notion of shedding your skin doesn’t appeal to you in the slightest, there are foot masks made to simply moisturize the feet without the exfoliating property.

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Popular brands of foot peel masks include Baby Foot, the Plantifique Natural Super Foods Mask, and the Tonymoly Foot Peeling Shoes. These masks are super simple to use, quite affordable, and the results can be nothing short of amazing. If you have had it with dry, cracked, callous feet…if you have a special event coming up or a beach vacation and your feet are less than, well, stunning…these may be for you. Definitely worth a try!

For those of you who are a little bit more on the adventurous side, that’s not to say you can’t make your own foot peel masks with ingredients and tools that you can pick up with ease.

Note: We have not tried all of these foot peels.

DIY Foot Mask Recipes*

If you’ve decided to make your own foot mask, there are many different ways to start. These easy recipes are based entirely around utilizing ingredients that you might find lying about the house. Remember that there is no universal process for this, and each method is fully customizable to suit your lifestyle and needs. But if you’re unsure of where to begin, here are a couple of popular ones to try:

1. Apple cider vinegar and baking soda with a lemon juice scrub

This recipe comprises of 2 cups of apple cider vinegar, 2 cups of warm water, and 1 tablespoon of baking soda. For the scrub, it’s advisable to use any form of grainy granulated sugar or salt with the lemon juice. Mix the liquid ingredients together and soak your feet in the solution. The acid present in the vinegar will help soften the callused areas and make it easier for you to get rid of the thickened skin with the homemade scrub. Dip a brush or foot scrubber into the lemon mixture and rub it along the sole of your foot to exfoliate.

2. Listerine and vinegar foot soak

This DIY foot mask is a wacky-sounding concoction that may seem like something straight out of this world, but the combination of ingredients has proven to be a rather powerful exfoliant. Both Listerine and vinegar contain specific acids that are gentle enough to break down the barriers of dead skin cells without severely damaging the feet.

3. Lemon juice and aspirin foot peel

This is also known as an ‘aspirin and citric acid foot peel’.  Pour some lemon juice into a bowl of aspirin and crush them together to make a paste. Spread this over the soles and wrap the feet in plastic in order to ensure that it really pushes through the skin.

4. Greek yogurt, honey, and celery

Aside from making a healthy and nutritious breakfast, when used in tandem, these individual ingredients also act as a great foot mask. Blend 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons of raw honey, 1 grated stalk of celery, and some coconut oil into a thick paste that you can slather all over the feet. The lactic acid present in the yogurt is a natural exfoliant, while the probiotic live cultures are useful in breaking down dead skin. The honey is used to speed up the healing process. Let this sit for 15-20 minutes and then rinse off to marvel over your rejuvenated soles.

5. Salt and peppermint oil

This easy recipe calls for combining the two ingredients and then rubbing them over the most callused areas of the feet immediately following a shower. The peppermint oil is an essential cooling oil that will soothe the sting of the scrubbing process.

How Often Can You Use Them?

The overall procedure for both store-bought and DIY foot masks is one that is simple, convenient, and relatively painless. The shedding of your skin may be an unseemly sight, but as long as you don’t pick or pull at it, the skin will fall off on its own without any irritation on your end. Store-bought foot masks can be found at the local drugstore or the skin care section of any supermarket, and even the most effective of brands will retail for under $15. These chemical foot masks should only be done every two to three months, as the high concentration of acids can be harmful if your skin is particularly sensitive. If you’re pregnant or have any preexisting condition, it’s advisable to steer clear of these products. On the other hand, homemade foot masks can cost almost nothing and are meant to be used on a more regular basis since the acid levels are not as high. Homemade foot scrubs can be used as often as once a week, and it’s recommended to do so while in the shower to keep your feet in top form.

Do They Work?

Whether store-bought or homemade, the general consensus is that foot peel masks are extremely effective in achieving what they set out to do. Most users report their skin feeling supple and baby-soft within the timeframe indicated by the packaging, and despite their understandable uneasiness with the shedding, both men and women alike have either set up a habit of using foot peel masks, or have continued to invest in purchasing the tools to make their own. In fact, once you’ve gotten into the foot peel mask craze, the only things you’ll want to stock up on are more colors of nail polish, because you can bet you’ll be flaunting your feet as you head out and about in style.

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If you’re interested in a thorough scrubbing of the feet, consider investing in a pumice stone. This is a natural lava stone that helps remove dead skin cells and calluses from the heels. All you need to do is dip the pumice stone in warm water and gently move it in a circular or sideways motion across the foot. Focus only on removing the top layer of dead cells in order to promote a healthy turnover to the ones underneath. Moisturize your soles right after use.

*Information, recipes and tips are for informational purposes only. Before undertaking any course of treatment or advice, the reader must seek the advice of their physician or other health care provider. UgleeFeet expressly recommends that you seek advice from a professional. See our Disclaimer for more information.