Tested on animals:Yes
Ever since L’Oreal bought Clarisonic in 2011, the line has expanded like wildfire to include a variety of skincare products and different versions of their rotating facial and body cleansing brush. Adding to their ever expanding collection is the Pedi Sonic Foot Transformation, a kit which includes a special brush plus three foot-care products. This handheld, rechargeable device comes with two attachments, one a scrub/buffing brush and the other a flat, abrasive disc with very tiny, refined edges.
Clarisonic makes the unusual claims that this device runs at a powerful “foot frequency”. We're not sure what frequency a foot vibrates at, but we'll assume they are referring to the strength of this device in that it provides enough power to exfoliate calluses on the feet. Whether you decide to try this depends strictly on your budget and desire for adding a touch of "spa luxury" to your beauty routine. There’s no downside to using the Pedi Sonic Foot Transformation, but we should mention that routine use of a callous remover along with a foot file can provide similar results.
Now that we’ve commented on the device itself, what about the three products that are included in the kit? (Each of the products and device heads are sold separately as well.) Let’s begin with the Pedi-Buff Sonic Foot Smoothing Treatment ($27 for 6 fl. oz.). This apricot seed scrub works as well as any of this type, such as the one from St. Ives sold at drugstores. The twist for Clairsonic’s version is they included luffa fruit which is the source of the loofah scrubbing sponge. There are a few beneficial ingredients in the formula such as lactic acid, vitamin E, and vitamin C but those are present at lower levels and would be rinsed down the drain before they had a change to improve skin on your feet. Overall this is an average to good formula, but ultimately an unnecessary one given the effectiveness of the Pedi Sonic Foot Transformation at removing rough areas of the feet on its own.
Next up is the Pedi-Balm Sonic Foot Softening Treatment ($27 for 3.5 fl. oz.). As a lightweight moisturizer this works just fine, but the formula isn't going beyond the benefits of a moisturizer from brands like Aquaphor or CeraVe. The fragrance in this product is significant, but to a large degree your feet aren't as sensitive to fragrance as the skin on the face or rest of the body.
The last of the three products included in the set is the Pedi-Boost Sonic Foot Renewing Peel Treatment ($32 for 1 fl. oz.). It is a basic lactic acid and glycolic acid AHA product with a pH that allows those ingredients to provide effective exfoliation. Although that could be a positive for your feet, unfortunately the second ingredient in this formula is alcohol, which is a problem for skin in such high concentration due to the the irritation and dryness it can cause. It can be argued the feet don’t have the same issues of being irritated as the rest of the body, but there are numerous alternatives that do not share the drawbacks of such formulas. It should also be said that this is an unecessary formula as well given the effectiveness of the Pedi Sonic Foot device at exfoliating on its own. If you want to use an AHA exfoliant, we would recommend considering the alternatives in our list of Best AHA Exfoliants
or Best BHA Exfoliants.
Ultimately, the Pedi Sonic Foot Transformation device is a good, effective option for those seeking to add a spa-like touch of luxury to their beauty routines, but it isn't a necessary tool. Should you feel like splurging to pamper yourself, it is one of the better designed devices on the market. We would just recommend skipping the skincare products that are included in the kit, as they don't add much to the enjoyment of the tool. If you're curious what is so unique about Clarisonic's patent "sonic technology," see the More Info section for these details.
Let's take a moment to explain what Clarisonic means with their "sonic technology," and why this matters. The brush head of the Clarisonic (and all of the various iterations, such as the Mia) vibrates at exceptionally high speeds (300 oscillations, or back-and-forth movements, every second). The design and timing of this the movement is distinctive to the Clarisonic brand, unlike spinning, oscillating head models.
Why does this matter? A spinning brush head, such as those you can find on many brands selling similar tools, has a greater risk of causing irritation and damage to skin. If you are in the mood to splurge for such a device, the Clarisonic is absolutely the best choice due to the quality of the tool, variable brush head choices and warranty availability from the brand. The fact that the Clarisonic is the only cleansing brush that uses sonic vibration technology (instead of a spin-head brush) also makes it the most gentle on skin.