Product Review: Kocostar Foot Therapy

Kocostar Foot Therapy

Spring has sprung in Vancouver and I couldn't be happier about it! I've packed away my winter boots and am wearing sneakers on the daily while daydreaming about the start of sandal season, which makes this the ideal time of year to do a foot peel mask like Kocostar Foot Therapy ($10).

You've probably seen foot peel masks like this one from different brands, but they all revolve around the same concept. Think of it as a sheet mask for your feet combined with an exfoliation treatment on steroids. You stick your feet into wraparound plastic booties with sticky tabs for a specific amount of time. The serum inside the booties (which is loaded with high concentrations of exfoliating ingredients) penetrates the thick, tough skin and calluses on your feet, causing your feet to self-exfoliate by shedding and peeling over the next 3-5+ days. The result: Baby smooth toes and soles, no scraping or pumicing required.

Full disclaimer: I actually tried Kocostar Foot Therapy last August—right in the midst of summer and the heat and sandal season—but haven't had a chance to write about it until now. I liked this particular mask for the ingredients that were and weren't in it. It relied on lactic and glycolic acids to exfoliate and contained 33 botanical ingredients to soothe and nourish, but it was also free of parabens, sulfates, and artificial fragrance. The booties had to stay on for 1.5 hours—just long enough for a Netflix rom-com and a glass of wine. From what I remember, they slipped and slid whenever I had to get up and walk around the condo, but otherwise they stayed put and the serum didn't ooze out or make a mess. My feet looked more or less the same when I removed the booties.

By day 3 though, I noticed patches of peeling which got larger with each passing day. Sometimes a huge piece of skin would come off; other times I'd be walking around the condo and leaving a little trail of foot dandruff. Peeling off great swaths of dead skin while watching TV was gross yet satisfying—a bit like peeling dried glue off your hands in elementary school. The exfoliation process lasted about a week, during which I kept the vacuum cleaner close by (so much foot dandruff!) and swapped my Birkenstocks for white sneakers. The mess and the shedding were worth it though, as my feet were noticeably softer and smoother by the end.

Last summer I blindly tried Kocostar Foot Therapy with no idea of what to expect. If I were to use Kocostar Foot Therapy or a similar foot peel mask again, what would I do differently? First, I'd do one sooner rather than later—while it's still cool enough to wear socks and close-toed shoes, to be exact. Having to eschew sandals during the heat of summer because my feet were a mess was a bummer. Second, I'd do nightly warm water foot soaks. The warm water accelerates the exfoliation process by softening skin so that it just rolls off into the water and you can dump it out in the bathtub. It cuts down on the whole "shedding little dry skin flakes everywhere all day long" phenomenon and is so much tidier this way. If you're considering a foot peel mask this spring, consider these tips some hard-won wisdom from me to you. You're welcome.

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