My Sad Tale:
I donít know when it happened to you, it happened to me in my mid-thirties. My beautiful feet started to show some wear and tear. It started slowly, a bit of thickening of the skin on the outside of my big toe (the side that faces the shoes).
Soon, I had a patch of dry skin on the side of my foot. Then, there was a bit of a crack on the heel. Finally, I had some disgusting thick skin start on the top of my big toe. In panic, I made an appointment with my dermatologist, convinced that I had contracted some sort of gross fungus. He took a look, examined my feet under a magnifying glass and very calmly told me I had calluses and just needed to pumice them off.
As soon as I got home I booked an appointment for a pedicure. Although I adore any type of cosmetic and skin care product, I have never really needed to spend much time on my feet, so pedicures and foot maintenance wasnít a priority. In my early 30ís I had a traumatic pedicure - the technician used one of those razor like objects (it looked like a giant potato peeler) on my feet and really took too much skin off. My feet were positively painful for awhile afterward, so I never regularly partook of pedicures afterward.
I guess Iím still squeamish, so I usually get a pedicure once a year. I figured that with regular pumice work, my feet would fare well. And they did. Through trial and error, I have found a great foot regimen that was working well for me. I use a wonderful synthetic pumice brick made by Origins and Pumice Foot Scrub by The Body Shop.
I had a great system, why did I change?
The problem with my system is that I was doing maintenance every other day. With two small children and working out of the home, I find my morning shower time getting minimized. I cram as many beauty regimens into my short time there - I slather on a face mask, then shave my legs, do my hair, soap the body and finish up with the pumice. If I let my foot routine go for a few days, I noticed those rough patches picking up where they left off fairly quickly.
I tried using foot lotions, but unless I did the scrub, the skin just really wouldnít soften. My friend, AZielinski, has always raved about Burtís Bees Coconut Foot Creme. Figuring that it was just another high priced cream, I put off buying it.
Then I read a few reviews here at Epinions, but still kept avoiding it. I still have an almost full tube of Avedaís Foot Lotion, another product that is supposed to be wonderful.
One day I was shopping at my local Whole Foods Store, called Bread & Circus here in the Boston area. Actually, it was a Friday night. I remember the day of the week because I was amazed at the level of activity in a grocery store on a weekend night. There were displays, vendors and free food throughout the store. Burtís Bees was one vendor. I was impressed because it actually was a true company representative. He asked me questions about the products I used, but also gave me a plentiful supply of the products he thought I might be interested in, along with product literature. The foot creme was included.
I had to give it a try. That night as soon as I opened the container, I was hooked. My room filled immediately with the unmistakable fragrance of coconut. Remember the Hawaiian Tropic sun tan lotion craze in the early 80ís? The top note of this product has the same, exact fragrance. I felt like I was on a remote beach. Too bad it was the middle of January.
If you donít love the coconut fragrance donít worry, because the bottom note (or the fragrance that comes out next) is a smooth, fresh peppermint fragrance (not the bubble gum variety smell of peppermint, but the real, plant like aroma).
Why it works
I knew as soon as I touched the cream that it was something special. It looks like a very, very thick vaseline (so thick it appears to be dry, if you can imagine). The thickness is deceiving. You might want to put a small amount on your feet. I donít recommend this. You need to give your feet a good coat all over. I know this because both of my children have suffered from eczema. To alleviate their skin condition, I have used a product called Aquaphor which is almost the same consistency as the Burtís and the children'sí dermatologist recommended slathering the product on their feet and covering them with socks. It worked for them, so I figured I would do the same for the foot creme.
I used approximately 1/25 of the tube or a good quarter sized dollop for each foot. As I was smoothing it on my feet, I could feel it wrap them in a sort of creme shoe. I put on the socks and went to bed (I did use a baby wipe to get the remaining off my hands). The cream is a yellowish-slightly green color, clear in appearance. It is thick like petroleum jelly, not thin like a lotion.
Whatís in it
This is the best part! There are only 10 ingredients in it and petrolatum isnít one of them. The ingredients are: vegetable glycerin, olive oil, oat protein, lanolin, water, coconut oil, tocopheral (vitamin E), peppermint oil, rosemary extract, fragrance.
Ok, back to why it works. Lotions are good for your skin because they put a very thin layer of protection on the top of your skin. It only sinks down so far. An oil gets to deeper layers. By putting on the socks and staying insulated over night, there is a greater chance that the oil will get deeper.
My childrenís pediatrician told me to not wash their socks when I was treating their eczema for a week because the thick paste would accumulate in the sock further working on the skin. As gross as this sounds, there are companies who sell pre-lotioned socks. I did wash their socks every 3-4 days though.
I noticed the change the very next morning. My feet were really soft!. So, I decided to do it again the next night. I did put those socks into a plastic baggie during the day, though. My feet were even softer the next morning. Better than any pedicure I have ever gotten, plus, I didnít have to pumice them for days!
So, what did I do with my old routine?
My feet still need a pumice every other week, just lightly. I use the Burtís once a week. Iíve thrown away the other foot lotions I have and I do wash those socks every use.
To save money you could use the Aquaphor on your feet instead of the Burtís, it costs $1.50 less for the same amount of product, but for $7.99, the Burtís has that great aroma.
Is this product worth the hype?
Absolutely! Just one use and I saw great results and it is far less expensive than any of the other designer foot products. I entitled this review Foot Care 101. This is an elementary decision to make, put one in your shopping cart and you wonít be sorry!
Where to find Burtís Bees?
Well, if you are in Carboro, North Carolina, you can visit the Burtís retail store. For those living in other parts of the country and world, visit them at www.burtsbees.com for a wonderful description of their company and products. Locally, visit your Whole Foods or nature stores as well as some upscale drugstores including Drugstore.com.
Just make sure to get this before the summer, so you donít have to walk around with those thick, ugly, cracked heels that scream out loud when you wear sandals (or if you donít expose your feet because of this, you will be able to show them after using the product!).
I almost forgot! The particulars
The foot creme comes in a 4 ounce aluminum tube (it looks like the old Crest toothpaste tubes). The tube is yellow with red writing on the face and a picture of two coconuts on the top and bottom portions of the tube. The cap is also yellow is a flip top. The company says it is 99.70% natural, the completed product is not tested on animals, and a customary inquiry hotline of 1-800-849-7112. You can also write them at Burtís Bees, Inc., Raleigh, North Carolina 27675. The tube can be recycled with the aluminum cans in your garbage.
Thank you for reading. If you have any questions, feel free to email me.
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