Despite its huge fan base, Baby Foot isn’t the only exfoliating product that can revive rough, calloused feet. According to Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, there are actually three main ingredients to pay attention to when exfoliating your feet: chemical exfoliants, skin softeners, and manual exfoliants. .

Chemical exfoliants containing alpha and beta hydroxy acids such as glycolic, salicylic, and fruit acids are the strongest options on the market, and usually come in the form of little booties in which you soak your feet. “[Alpha and beta] Hydroxy acids work by dissolving the connections between skin cells, so dead skin can slough off,” says Dr. Zeichner. The result? A lot of skin shedding, which explains the dramatic, very disturbing uploads you see from commenters on baby feet Satisfied photo.

We’re constantly putting pressure on our feet, which is why the skin becomes hard and thicker — so it’s one of the first places to show signs of flaking, peeling, and calluses. However, callus formation is a protective measure, and removing both calluses and dead skin at the same time may make your skin more sensitive to its environment, says Dr. Zeichner.

“The goal should be to have enough crust to protect your feet, but not so much that it leaves you with an uncomfortable and unpleasant thick skin,” says Dr. Zeichner.

In moderation (Dr. Zeichner doesn’t recommend a foot peel every few weeks, though you can use a foot mask as much as you want), the following treatments really live up to their claims and help restore skin. All nine foot peels are recommended by board-certified dermatologists and podiatrists who emphasize the importance of regular exfoliation and hydration to keep your feet soft and healthy year-round.

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