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Best foot file 2023: Fabulous feet without the need to soak

Cracked skin and calluses on the soles of your feet? The best foot files are here to help you take your heels out of hiding

Let’s talk about feet. They carry us around all day, everyday, enabling us to perform activities such as walking, running, dancing and jumping. And while folk spend plenty of time considering the health of other parts of their body, the feet don’t often see the same level of attention.

Dry and hardened skin on the feet can be uncomfortable; it can even be embarrassing for some, with such folk shunning sandals to keep their feet hidden all year round. But your feet deserve better – and with a little care and attention, it is possible for them to see the light of day!

Remember, skincare should be head to toe. Using a proper foot file can help you rid dry, hard and calloused spots on your feet, revealing fresh and smooth skin, ready to take on another day.

To learn more about foot files and the type that may be right for you, we’ve put together a brief buying guide on how to choose the best foot file for you, after which you’ll find our top picks.

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Best foot file: At a glance

How to choose the best foot file for you

What types of foot files are available?

In order to choose the right foot file, it’s worth considering the different types available.

Rasp foot files – Also known as microplane foot files, these are one of the most popular styles of foot file available. Rasp files are made of metal and resemble hand-held cheese graters. They can be used on both wet and dry skin, and they’re best for removing thick layers of dead skin. However, it’s important to take care: this type of file can remove a lot of skin at once, and it’s easy to accidentally remove too much.

Motorised foot files – These foot files are electronic and run either on batteries or charged power. They can be used on wet or dry skin, and work by buffing and removing stubborn areas of dry skin. They get the job done far more quickly than using a manual file, and deliver results that are as close to getting a professional pedicure.

Pumice stone – A natural alternative to other types of files, pumice is produced from volcanic eruptions, with its pores the result of gas bubbles that become trapped inside the magma. It’s important to dampen the stone before use to ease the abrasiveness.

Glass foot files – Unlike metal files, glass files use a textured surface to buff away dead skin without sharp edges. Their tempered glass makes them strong and durable. This makes them a sustainable choice, too: they don’t tend to break and their texture doesn’t wear down over time.

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Can I use a foot file if I have a health condition?

One warning that you’ll see consistently on your hunt for a foot file is that the majority state they shouldn’t be used by people who are diabetic or suffer poor circulation in their legs. These conditions make a person more prone to infection and other complications. For example, a callus could develop into an ulcer, and a file could potentially damage live skin, which risks bacteria entering the wound. For that reason, it’s best to consult a healthcare professional before using a foot file.

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The best foot file to buy in 2023

1. Rikans Colossal Foot Rasp File and Callus Remover: Best foot file overall

Price: £10 | Buy now from Amazon

A large file made of surgical grade stainless steel, the Rikans Colossal Foot Rasp File and Callus Remover has a sharp enough blade to remove layers of dead skin and calluses off your feet without being too harsh.

The file can be used on both wet skin and dry skin, delivering professional-level results. Arriving with a cloth bag for clean and easy storage, Rikans even offers a 30-day money-back guarantee for its products, so you have some time to determine whether the Colossal foot file is the best fit for your feet.

Make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s directions, since overuse can cause your skin to become quite raw. Overall, this simple file is one of the most effective tools you can use to keep calluses and other long-term dry skin build-up at bay.

Key specs – Material: Stainless steel; Wet or dry skin: Both; Electric: No; Dimensions: 24.7 x 6.9 x 0.7cm

2. Nimxy Natural Lava Pumice Stone: Best pumice foot file

Price: £5 | Buy now from Amazon

For a natural way to file away dead skin from your feet, consider a pumice stone. Made of volcanic stone, Nimxy’s pumice stone can help smooth your skin naturally. The stone is lightweight yet abrasive, and it removes dead skin from the feet gently, while also reducing the size of calluses or corns to make them less uncomfortable.

Pumice stones are easy to use and easy to care for. To use, soak your feet in warm water for several minutes, as would happen at a professional pedicure appointment. Dampen the stone and scrub softly using circular motions.

Once you’re done, rinse feet using cold water and finish with a moisturising lotion. To clean the pumice stone itself, simply rinse with soap and water, then leave to dry. Once a month, boil for several minutes for a deeper clean. Overall, this pumice stone is a great choice for those looking for a natural foot-care option.

Key specs – Material: Volcanic stone; Wet or dry skin: Wet; Electric: No; Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 2.5cm

3. Sunivaca Glass Foot File: Best glass foot file

Price: £12 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’d rather not use a sharp implement on your feet, a glass foot file may be for you. Unlike traditional metal files, a glass foot file uses a textured surface to gently lift away dead skin. It’s also a more robust choice, made of one solid piece that won’t easily crack or break.

Aside from being a sturdy piece of equipment, the Sunivaca glass files won’t wear down in the same manner as a traditional sharpened file. Glass files offer consistent results, no matter how long you use them, and since they don’t have any cracks or crevices into which dead skin can become caught, they’re also a more sanitary option.

Easy to clean, simply soap and rinse the file with water after use. For a deeper clean, though, you can place your file in boiling water for several minutes or even dip it in disinfectant to keep it in tip-top condition.

Key specs – Material: Glass; Wet or dry skin: Wet; Electric: No; Dimensions: 14 x 7 x 0.5cm

4. Scholl Velvet Smooth Electric Foot File: Best electric foot file

Price: £40 | Buy now from Boots

Those who want soft, smooth feet without (a) putting in the work, and (b) spending lots of money on regular pedicures, should buy the Scholl Velvet Smooth electronic foot file. In use, your “effort” with this file will extend simply to applying light pressure against your dry skin; the file will do the rest.

This coarse pumice file features two speed settings to gently buff away dead skin to the degree you need. It can be used on both wet or dry skin, making it super-convenient.

The Velvet Smooth electric foot file also comes with an exfoliation brush, which you can use to clear dry, flaky skin before you file away hard skin. A slathering of some quality moisturiser once you’re done will ensure your feet are velvety smooth. Of course, this file is more expensive than regular foot files, but it delivers a professional pedicure experience in your own home.

Key specs – Material: Pumice stone, plastic bristles; Wet or dry skin: Both; Electric: Yes; Dimensions: 17 x 20 x 20.7cm

Buy now from Boots

5. JML PedEgg: Best foot file for easy cleanup

Price: £12 | Buy now from Boots

Putting time and effort into buffing dry and dead skin off your feet will leave you with silky-smooth tootsies – and a mess. The ergonomically shaped JML PedEgg features 135 micro files that help remove calluses and dead skin without being too abrasive, and is also designed to prevent all that dead skin from escaping.

The egg-shaped rear fits comfortably in your hand, catching the shavings as you work. Once you’re done, simply separate the rear from the file and empty the contents into the bin. The PedEgg comes with two exfoliating pads.

Once you’ve finished filing your feet, you can use an exfoliating pad to polish your skin, leaving it ready for moisturising. This tool is best used on dry skin, since it may remove too many layers if used on wet skin.

Key specs – Material: Metal; Wet or dry skin: Dry; Electric: No; Dimensions: 2.5 x 6.75 x 10cm

Buy now from Boots

6. Silk’n VacuPedi: Best luxury foot file

Price: £69 | Buy now from Silk’n

The Silk’n VacuPedi takes the convenience of an electronic foot file to the next level. This rechargeable unit comes with three different grinding discs: fine, medium and coarse. Offering both low and high settings, the discs rotate between 1,350 and 1,550 times per minute to remove dry and hard skin. 

Unlike most manual foot files that would be used with an up-and-down motion, this file rotates in a circular motion, working quickly and efficiently to leave skin feeling super-smooth. The tool is designed for your comfort, so all you have to do is hold it against your dry skin for a few seconds.

The major benefit of the VacuPedi is, of course, the vacuum feature. It sucks up skin flakes as you remove them to ensure a mess-free finish. The unit can be used for as long as 110 minutes on a single charge, and is rechargeable via USB, so no bothering with batteries here.

Key specs – Material: Not specified; Wet or dry skin: Dry; Electric: Yes; Dimensions: 18 x 6.4 x 9cm

Buy now from Silk’n

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