Is Oprah's Foot Rub the Secret to Her Chill? An Investigation

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Footnanny review: A Footnanny set of jars
  • Value: 17/20
  • Functionality: 20/20
  • Ease of Use: 18/20
  • Aesthetics: 18/20
  • Effectiveness: 20/20
  • TOTAL: 93/100

Every two weeks, for the past 16 years, Oscar-winner, thought leader and billionaire Oprah Winfrey has carved two hours out of her busy schedule to have pedicurist Gloria L. Williams “do her feet.” This is no mere pedicure, mind you. It’s an indulgent foot soak from a brand called Footnanny that comes complete with a massage cream and callous removal that Winfrey says leaves her feeling “calm and relaxed."

Since Oprah sprinkles magic success dust on everyone she encounters, she encouraged Williams to create the product line based on her own homemade concoctions. The then-fledgling entrepreneur jumped at the opportunity, and has since turned Footnanny into a best-selling brand of pampering footcare products.

Oprah shared a video of her reunion with Williams in 2019. In the clip, she raved about how “The @footnanny’s scrubs and creams helped [her] for the last year,” so naturally, we were curious about the regimen.

Could this be the cure for our cracked heels and ashy toes? Could it provide the key to help us relax and give us the strength to lift whatever immovable objects are placed before us in life? Were we asking too much of a product?

I set out to find out with the Footnanny foot treatment set. I started by heaping a few tablespoons of the herbal foot salts into a basin of hot water. I sat on the edge of my bathtub, taking deep breaths of the parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme scents wafting up from the water. Since Williams recommends you soak for ten to 20 minutes, I took a meditation break while I was letting my skin soften (or as we call it around Thanksgiving, brine). Next, I toweled off my water-swollen (but noticeably softened) feet before slathering on a handful of eucalyptus foot cream, which is super emollient thanks to the mix of soy, shea butter, cocoa butter, vitamin C and E, as well as eucalyptus essential oil found in the formula. I dug my thumbs deep into the balls of my feet, my arches and my poor overworked toes. "Damn, this feels good"! I swooned, as my tingly, eucalyptus-laced self-massage got the blood flowing in my feet.

Unlike other foot creams I’ve used, this one wasn’t overly perfumed and it didn’t seem like it was loaded with chemicals. That’s because Williams’ foot treatments were inspired by recipes she learned from her mom, who used natural ingredients to make massage potions for her sick and elderly neighbors in her hometown of Montgomery, Alabama.

I kept rubbing the cream in until most of it was absorbed, then I applied another thin layer of lotion to the callouses on my heels and toes. Finally, I slipped on the thin socks that come with the Footnanny kit, climbed into bed and fell asleep before I could even remember my usual nighttime relaxation regimen.

When I woke up in the morning, my callous-crusted heels had softened considerably and now looked good enough to display. And frankly, I felt happy recalling the sense memory of my self-massage.

As the year wears on, I’ll be supplementing my ritual with the brand's dry buffer to exfoliate before my weekly foot softening sessions. (I’m also excited to try the Bodynanny eucalyptus body scrub and sponge set that Winfrey chose as one of her Favorite Things of 2022, not just for the feet, but the entire body.)

After a few weeks of using Footnanny, I have come to the conclusion that Oprah has indeed conquered this game called life thanks to her foot rubs. (At least, that’s how I’m selling my little slice of me time to my family.)

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dana dickey

Senior Editor

Dana Dickey is a PureWow Senior Editor, and during more than a decade in digital media, she has scoped out and tested top products and services across the lifestyle space...