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Start now, thats all I can say! There's a difference between forced softness, and gradual softness, forced softness feels glassy sometimes, gradual feels more like the softness of your palms.
If you get a "Mr Pumice" from Sally Beauty supply - or similar stores - just scrub your feet from all angles with that guy. Those are my favorite! Every day in the shower, scrubba scrubba. Find some shea butter and slather your feet in that, then put on socks, and let them marinate over night. You might kick your socks off in your sleep, but for as long as they stay on, it'll help your feet absorb more moisture. My favorite lotion is from Lush.
I usually only get a pedicure to fix my polish each week, or get one if I'm in a tight spot with random roughness that appears after a weekend on the lake or something. I rarely need pedicures to soften my pads, because I work on that at home so much.
Hope that helps!
-Jeni, AOBT instructor