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Top 10 Best Pedicure Products, Tools & Tips

Top Pedicure Products and Tools

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Summer is the roughest season on our feet. Sandals expose them to the elements, barefoot walks on the beach, hot concrete or even hardwood floors can all add up to dry skin, cracked heels and ragged cuticles. This week, the Top 10 Tuesday team is focusing on the best pedicure products and I’ve got my five essentials for you with “Splurge” and “Save” options. I’m also sharing my Top 10 pedicure tips, whether you DIY or go to the salon.

Since I’ve shared my Top 10 Manicure Products with you, I won’t delve into tools like base and top coat, cuticle pushers, etc. as they are the same for both my fingers and toes. Instead, I’m going to focus on the products I only use for pedicures.


Pedicure Foot File, Callous Remover, Clarisonic Pedi
Splurge - Clarisonic Pedi ($199, Being a proponent of the original Clarisonic, the Pedi has intrigued me since its release. The “smoothing disc,” used a couple times a week on dry skin, removes callouses, while the “buffing brush head” exfoliates dead skin on the daily when used with the accompanying “Pedi-Buff” scrub. This kit is definitely an investment but it lives up to its claims. And I love the lactic and glycolic acid-packed “Pedi Boost” gel to chemically exfoliate my skin.

SaveHeel to Toe Sanitizable Foot File ($3.49, The key word here is “sanitizable.” Pumice stones can collect bacteria so stick with a foot file and sanitize regularly. This basic file requires some elbow grease and regular use but it gets the job done on the cheap.

Pedicure Socks by Pedi-Sox Regardless of the season, the lotions used during a spa pedicure leave my feet slipping in my flip flops. So, even though I don’t need them for warmth, I use my pedicure socks in the summer to make sure I don’t slide out of my shoes.

SplurgePedi-Sox ($9-12, The original pedicure socks, Pedi-Sox are well made and come in a ton of patterns. I have nautical stripes and leopard and they always garner attention at the salon.

SaveDIY your own pedicure socks by cutting the toes off an old pair. Of course these will fray over time so it’s best to hand wash. Another option is to pick up a pair of leg warmers but that’s a bit much for summer.

Best Foot Cream

When it comes to foot cream I am a big believer in using products with fruit acids, to aid in exfoliation. The more exfoliating, the better.

SplurgeOrigins Reinventing The Heel ($23.50, This cream is very thick and geared towards really dry, cracked heels. If your feet are in decent shape it’s probably more than you need for day but it makes an amazing overnight treatment in cotton socks.

SaveFeet by OPI Callus Therapy ($14.95, This is one of the best foot creams I’ve used and it really doesn’t get enough love. The fresh, orange scent, the silky texture and the effectiveness of the acids make it a winner in my book.

Best Cuticle Remover

When it comes cuticle removers, I actually use different ones for my toes than my hands. While Orly Cutique is my go-to for fingers, due to its stain removing capability, that isn’t really an issue for my feet.

SplurgeDeborah Lippmann Cuticle Remover ($20, If you want the Chanel of cuticle removers, look no further. It removes dead skin cells in a snap while hydrating skin to promote growth.

SaveSally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover ($6.99, The “blue gel” is a nail fanatic favorite for a good reason. It’s cheap and effective.

Pedicure Toe Separator Flip Flops

SplurgePedi-Couture Slippers ($25-35, If you have short toes, like me, you’ve undoubtedly jacked up a pedicure due to a toe separator dislodging and bumping your polish. It happened on my last salon visit. Ugh! If only I had remembered my toe separating flip flops! They aren’t the most comfortable to walk in but they can save your pedicure.

SaveHeel to Toe Toe Spacers ($.99, If you’re doing your pedi at home or have longer toes, these foam separators are more than enough to keep your toes from bumping. I like to cut mine into individual pieces so I only use two pieces per foot.

Honorable Mention

Pedicure Foot Wipes
These wipes aren’t necessary for a pedicure but they’re a delightful treat in the summer. After a long day of tromping around a dirty city, beach or backyard these refreshing Earth Therapeutics Clean + Cool Foot Wipes ($7, invigorate your feet with tea tree oil while they swipe the day’s grime away. A baby wipe will suffice, of course, but these are a heavenly indulgence.

Top 10 Pedicure Tips

At Home

  • Clip nails after a soak to make them more pliable and less likely to split
  • When you cut your nails at home, use a large curved clipper, specifically made for toes. A fingernail clipper is too small.
  • Cut nails from side to middle, side to middle. Don’t try to cut the entire nail at once or it could split or rip – Elle, Celebrity Manicurist, Dermelect Color Curator
  • Don’t cut nails too short or they can snap in and cause ingrown nails. It’s okay to leave a sliver of white – Elle
  • Never use a protein enriched and strengthener product together. Using both will cause your polish to crack. Try to only apply a nail protein to bare nails – Skyy Hadley, Celebrity Manicurist, owner As U Wish Nail Spa

At The Salon

  • Do not shave your legs before a pedicure appointment. Shaving can cause microscopic cuts that can become infected. Plus it removes a layer of skin that can be irritated by the fragrance in creams or physical exfoliants in scrubs. – Pattie Yankee, Celebrity Manicurist, Founder, Patricia Nail Lacquer
  • Look for a salon that uses portable pedicure tubs with removable liners. The massaging pedicure thrones are more comfy but can breed bacteria.
  • If you have no option but to visit a salon with jetted pedicure tubs, make sure they are using a hospital grade disinfectant and running the solution through for 10 minutes. When the jets shut off, they suck in water, so the water from the last client can be in those jets if they aren’t properly flushed – Elle
  • Don’t feel bad about asking for proof of sterilization. If you don’t see tools coming out of disinfectant, request that the technician show you their sanitizing procedure. I’ve seen techs pull used tools from a drawer, spray them for a second and attempt to use them on me. I walked out and you should too!
  • If you bring your own tools to the salon, and feel free to do so, make sure you are sanitizing them with the proper disinfectant. Just because they are only used on you, it doesn’t mean they can’t breed bacteria. carries Barbicide.


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What are your favorite pedicure products or tools? Do you have a great at-home pedicure tip to share?

Disclosure: Product samples were provided by reps for Clarisonic, Origins, Pedi-Sox. Affiliate links appear in this post. When you purchase through an affiliate link, you help support this site. For more info view my Disclosure Policy
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There Are 43 Brilliant Comments

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  1. This is such a fantastic post! I love the splurge and save options. It’s good to know there are affordable items that work well.

  2. Michelle, great post as always. I just recently succumbed to the hype I’ve been hearing about the Deborah Lippman cuticle remover. I am now a believer. It really is as fantastic as they say. In my opinion, well worth the cost.

  3. Diane says:

    babyfoot! it is a weird thing, but it works. I’ve used it twice so far.

    • Ah, yes, Babyfoot. I got a sample of that three or four years ago at a trade show before it was carried in the US. I had the boyfriend try it, since his feet are beat from hockey, and it’s definitely weird but effective.

  4. Annika says:

    If I really have no time for a long overdue pedicure, I stand with my feet in a bucket with foot bathing salt while showering. Effective – allthough there is a lack spa-feeling :-)

  5. Rach says:

    So I haven’t tried the wipes, but a couple of months ago, my aunt turned me on to the Earth Organics Tea Tree Oil foot spray, and I LOVE IT. It doesn’t totally stop the sweating, but it cuts back a heck of a lot. (Just don’t sit cross-legged after spraying your feet, because the back of your shin and parts of your thigh will feel tingly. Ha!) I wonder if I’d like the wipes just as much. Hm.

  6. Jessica says:

    What great tips! I appreciate knowing the splurge/save options as well. Sometimes you just want to pamper yourself.

  7. Lisa N. says:

    Nice pedicure recommendations!

  8. Pammy says:

    OMG! I want that clarisonic pedi!!!!

  9. Phyrra says:

    So many great tips! I love seeing the splurge and save options.

  10. I want to try the foot wipes, they sound refreshing after a hot day in sandals!

  11. Carleen says:

    I should get some pedicure socks. Those are a great idea!

  12. So glad the foot wipes got an honorable mention. I love them for conferences where I’m walking around in less than super comfortable shoes all day and just need a little pick-me-up before bed to refresh for the next day of jam packed meetings and educational sessions!

  13. jbrobeck says:

    I love my leopard pedisox! I don’t get pedicures anymore, but if I did I would want those Pedi-Couture Slippers!

  14. What a wonderful post. I learned a lot. I always shave before a pedicure but no more! Thanks for all the info.

  15. Katy says:

    Where’s the PedEgg? Just kidding! My mom put one in my sticking and the “file” is more like a cheese grater. I did like the replaceable emery pads for buffing my heels.

    I wonder if they even still sell that thing?

  16. Nikita says:

    Great post!! I am new to your blog and I am hooked. Thank you for the great options and explanations of all the pedicure products. I have a question, I am not at all an expert and this may be a little TMI but I am daring enough to ask anyway, any help is appreciated. I am proud to say i have pretty well maintained feet. However, this summer I have noticed the skin around the tips of my toes, near the nails are becoming hard. Any suggestions on how to cure this?

    • Try a foot cream with fruit acids to help soften the skin. OPI Feet is a great option and it smells heavenly. Another option is CND Cuticle Eraser. It’s a cream with acids that removes cuticles but can soften hard skin as well.

      • Denise says:

        I have the exact same thing happening! One of those particular toenails is not lying as flat as they used to also & is instead starting to point upwards @ the end (TMI). It’s a year later than your last post so i’m wondering if you have any newer product(s) you’d recommend (b/c this issue is driving me cray-cray!).Just got H.O.O.K.E.D. on your website Michelle! Thank you!

        • Hi Denise! I’m so glad you found me. Welcome! I’m not sure what would cause your toenail not to lay flat. You might want to see a doctor as I’m not sure there is a topical product that can help. Was there some sort of trauma to the toe? Like dropping an object on it or banging it against something?

  17. elizabeth says:

    Great tips! I can’t wait to try those foot wipes. Just wondering what’s the best way to sanitize a foot file?

    • Hi Elizabeth! You can get Barbicide from Sally Beauty and use that to soak your tools. In a pinch, I’ll wash it with anti-bacterial soap but I don’t know how effective that is.

  18. There were a couple products I had never heard of. I’m definitely going to search them out now! More and more I prefer to do my own pedicures. Maybe I’m just not going to expensive enough salons, but I usually have something to complain about. For example: I don’t really have callouses, but every time they scrub away at my feet like I do, and it hurts! I feel like I get the best results when I just do it myself. Thanks for the great post! I’ll be even better equipped for my next DIY pedi.

  19. Abbi says:

    I don’t give my feet half the attention that I do my hands. This is a great way to start! Thanks.

  20. Craftynail says:

    Great post! I definitely need more pedicure products! I love those flip flops

  21. Mae says:

    Thank you for your tips, I actually have not realized many facts e.g. not shaving etc.

  22. Allie says:

    I love getting a pedicure every now and then. It is hard to neglect our feet as they are an essential part of our body and going to a spa really relaxes them. I have not tried the foot wipes yet so I better have a check on them. Great post!

  23. StanBell says:

    I haven’t tried OPI Callus foot cream but it’s cheap and looks promising. I’ll check out this product. Thanks also for sharing home pedicure tips as I’ve really learned a lot. Looking forward to reading your other posts.

  24. Rose J. says:

    Michelle, Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I ordered a pair of the Pedi-Couture slippers for a Christmas gift for a friend. We splurged on a mani (for me) and pedi (for her) after the New Year and she brought her slippers. They were the talk of the salon & she LOVES them. Between you & Jessika (Polish Insomniac) I always have a great gift idea.

  25. I for real want those splurge toe separators!

  26. Lizbeth says:

    I found this on Amazon today. Looks like it’s new. I love love love anything pink, so I would rather get this than the Amope Pedi Perfect. Does anyone have one? Are you happy with it?