We spend so much time prepping for that first bikini-required day of summer, but what about our feet? Before sun-drenched pool days fill the calendar, it’s time to ensure your feet are looking their best. Here, how to nix all evidence of dry skin, cracked heels and everything in between—all in time for your next beach day.
Scrub Your Feet
Bay Harbor Islands dermatologist Stacy Chimento, MD says she’s a big believer in regular exfoliation—both physical and chemical work well—to keep the feet smooth, hydrated and presentable both during the summer months.
Similar to how a facial scrub sloughs off dead, dull skin and leaves behind a soft finish, the same concept applies to the skin beneath our feet. While any scrub will really do the trick, Dr. Chimento is a fan of the Barefoot Scientist Pure Grit Micro Scrub ($28), which she says contains volcanic sand, bentonite clay and quartz “to gently remove dead, excess skin and toxins while improving the skin barrier with its natural oils.”
While physically sloughing off dull, cracked skin with a scrub, pumice stone or similar device will absolutely improve rough texture, Dr. Chimento says chemical exfoliation is the best way to go for best results. “Look for ingredients like alphahydroxy acids, such as glycolic and salicylic acid, which dissolve the bonds between skin cells to allow cellular turnover, hence softer feet!”
While some foot peels have a goal of shedding all dead, rough skin from the bottoms of your feet to reveal the silkiest skin yet—try Babyfoot ($25) or Patchology PoshPeel Pedicure ($20) if that’s what you’re after—others, such as ISDIN Uradin Podos Hydrating Gel Oil ($35) focus on buildable, yet very effective, results and can be used on a regular basis.
Regardless of which exfoliation route you choose, what you do afterwards is just as important. “It’s always best to exfoliate and then maintain the skin barrier after with good moisturizers that contain skin softeners and exfoliators with an ingredient such as urea,” explains Dr. Chimento.
Some derm-approved favorites include AmLactin Foot Repair ($12) with alphahydroxy acids and CeraVe SA Cream for Rough & Bumpy Skin ($20). “If you can, moisturizing in the morning and the evening is best.”
On Your Toes
Keeping toes clean and well-groomed is a no-brainer for prettier feet. However, depending on your location, indulging in a pedicure might be out of the question right now. If that’s the case, opt for an all-inclusive kit, such as Olive and June’s Studio Box ($50), to easily keep toes looking fresh from home.