Exfoliating Socks: How They Work & The Best To Try

By the end of summer, your feet tend to have taken a bit of a battering. If you’ve neglected yours, foot peels and exfoliating socks offer a minimal-effort solution for at-home maintenance. Alpha hydroxy acids and hydrating glycerine work to break down the top layers of your skin, with the results set to last for months at a time. Keen to give them a go? Here are the ones to try...

Footner Exfoliating Socks, £9.99

Considered the ‘OG’ of foot peelers, these clever socks are pricey, but so worth it. The mandelic acid-formula works hard to remove dead skin, so leave them on for an hour before rubbing in any excess formula for optimum results. After about four days, the peeling and shredding will begin, revealing super-smooth skin underneath. Just don’t be tempted to peel anything off yourself – leave the skin to flake naturally, instead.

Available at Boots.com


Holika Holika Baby Silky Foot One Shot Peeling Mask, £9.95

Designed to bring puffy, swollen feet back to life, this Korean mask is sheds dead skin within 10-14 days. It can be used monthly for ongoing maintenance, but the smooth and hydrated results should last for at least two months. Try wearing a soft loose sock over your booties to ensure the liquid is distributed evenly. We also love how well the non-sticky formula absorbs, so you’re never left with any tacky residue when you put your shoes on, or go to bed. 

Available at LookFantastic.com


Lumiline Newskin Foot Peeling Socks, £8.99

These socks are an Amazon bestseller, and it’s easy to see why. Formulated with aloe vera and papain, they soften hardened calluses and rough areas – ideal for those who walk or run a lot. While they lend feet a full exfoliation, shea butter and coconut oil means skin is never stripped and always replenished with moisture. Unlike others on this list, they also get to work within just two days – a great option if you’re tight on time or are planning a holiday.

Available at Amazon.co.uk 


Oh K! Peeling Foot Mask, £8.50 

One of the best budget options, this affordable foot mask is great for getting rid of hard, dry skin quickly. Using exfoliating AHAs, it’s gentle, while still providing effective results. Pop the socks on and leave for at least an hour. Immediately after they’ll feel smoother and flake-free, but in terms of the shedding process, be patient – you’ll find results take at least a week to manifest. When they do begin to work, you’ll find skin starts to appear fresher and softer-looking. They work particularly well on cracked heels, too.

Available at LookFantastic.com


Skin Republic Foot Peel Mask, £6.59 (was £9.99)

If you’re after a peel that isn’t too hardcore, this is the one for you. Brimming with fruit extracts and AHAs, it offers light shedding in just a few days. It doesn’t just exfoliate though – it also deeply hydrates thanks to vitamin E, rosemary leaf extract and olive fruit extract, providing instant relief to hard, dry soles. The addition of anti-inflammatory ginkgo biloba leaf extract makes them a treat for overly hot feet, too. 

Available at Superdrug.com


STARSKIN Magic Hour Exfoliating Foot Mask Socks, £13

Tough calluses and hard skin don’t stand a chance against these aloe-vera infused socks. Ideal for a night-in, apply them for a full 90-minutes, allowing the glycolic, lactic and salicylic acid to get to work exfoliating and breaking down dry patches. Don’t expect to see results immediately – give it up to ten days to start to see some shedding and peeling. This lasts for about three days (so leave the sandals at home). The best bit? The results last for at least three months.

Available at LookFantastic.com


BeautyPro Foot & Callus Peel, £6.76

Dual-layered, this foot peel harnesses the benefits of 16 botanical fruit extracts to swiftly break down dead skin. It gets to work gradually over seven days, which is when the foot surface begins to peel and shed away. Despite its efficacy, it’s gentler than other peels, so you can use a foot file to remove any excess that isn’t breaking away on its own. 

Available at LookFantastic.com


*PLEASE NOTE: The skin on your feet should be treated the same as your face. If you’re suffering with any skin conditions, inflammation or irritation, always speak to a professional before applying exfoliating socks. Likewise, if you have a reaction, speak to your GP or local pharmacist immediately.

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