Dry skin on feet can be annoying, painful, and even just downright embarrassing. Seriously, there is very little that is worse than hearing the skin rub against a pair of socks. Or more embarrassing than looking down at your strappy sandals and seeing the feet of a Flintstones character.
However, there are specific remedies that you can try out to keep your dry skin from getting worse, and even get rid of it altogether.
I know from experience that if give your feet the same treatment that you give your face, you can make your feet soft and smooth without putting in a ton of work.
What Causes Dry Skin On Feet?
There are several different possible causes to dry skin on feet. If you aren’t sure what’s causing yours, it may be best to consult with your doctor, in case there is an underlying issue.
Many people notice dry skin on their feet around their heels. Often they will be cracked, and I know that I deal with this in the winter months.
But what causes the skin on your heels to crack?
Well, when we walk, the fat pad underneath your heel expands and causes callouses to crack.
Common causes of dry skin on feet
A common cause of dry skin on feet is something I briefly mentioned already, and that is due to the climate, such as the winter months or low humidity.
Another major cause is not moisturizing your feet well enough.
Of course, aging is a huge factor of dry skin on the entire body. As you get older, your skin starts to lose its ability to retain water. So, it becomes thinner and less plump.
Additional causes of dry skin on feet include:
- Walking barefoot or with open-backed sandals
- Taking long, hot showers
- Standing for long periods
- Wearing ill-fitting shoes
- Using harsh soap that strips your skin of natural oils
Medical causes of dry skin on feet
Obviously, there are widespread common causes of dry skin on feet, but you could also have a medical issue that causes dry skin.
A prevalent medical condition that is known to cause dry skin on your feet is diabetes, when you also have high blood pressure and poor circulation.
Diabetes can also cause nerve damage, so you may not even realize how dry your skin really is, because you won’t feel the pain.
Athlete’s foot is another leading cause of dry skin on feet, but you should definitely consult a doctor if you suspect that you have it.
Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that causes a scale-like rash on your feet, generally between your toes or underneath your foot.
Other medical conditions causing dry skin may include:
- Fungal infection
- Vitamin deficiency
- Atopic dermatitis
- Juvenile plantar dermatosis
- Palmoplantar keratoderma
Certain medications could also cause dry skin, such as diuretics or antihistamines.
10 Solutions To Removing Dry Skin On Feet
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Here are our top 10 steps to removing dry skin on feet.
1. Soak feet
You shouldn’t soak your feet too often, as that can be more likely to dry them out. However, it’s a good idea to soak your feet for a bit before exfoliating them.
The ideal solution is to purchase a foot spa, which can give you the perfect experience. They will also massage your feet, making you feel like you’re at a luxurious spa rather than the comfort of your own home.
You can even add some extras to your foot soak to enhance the experience, such as:
- Epsom salt
- Lemon juice
- Peppermint essential oil
2. Consistently moisturize
The key to keeping dry skin on feet at bay is to moisturize, moisturize again, and then moisturize some more.
One of the number one causes of dry feet is not moisturizing them often enough, so it’s essential to moisturize them every single day.
When searching for your perfect moisturizer, search for these ingredients:
- Salicylic acid
- Alpha-hydroxy acids
- Saccharide isomerate
- Hyaluronic acid
- Plant-based butters and oils
- Coconut oil
It’s best to avoid moisturizers that contain ingredients with added fragrances, alcohol, and artificial dyes. These can actually make your skin even drier and irritate it further.
When you first start moisturizing your feet, some minor stinging or irritation will occur. This is totally normal, especially if you aren’t used to moisturizing them and they are extremely dry.
However, if the pain becomes intense and won’t go away, or causes a severe reaction, it’s best to consult with your doctor. They may be able to prescribe you a special cream to use.
3. Exfoliate feet
Another remedy to get rid of dry skin on feet is to exfoliate them. Exfoliating your feet will get rid of dead skin cells, which can often be very dry.
It’s best to do this no more than once a week, as over-exfoliation can cause irritation.
It is also best to exfoliate after soaking your feet for a bit so that you aren’t too harsh on your skin.
Some useful tools to use for exfoliating are loofahs, foot scrubbers, body brushes, electronic callus removers, or pumice stones.
You can even purchase an all-in-one foot exfoliator, that acts as a cleanser, exfoliator, and moisturizer for your feet.
Another exfoliating option is to use a foot scrub.
You can also make your own exfoliating scrub at home, with a mix of warm water, honey, and sugar. It is natural and not harsh at all, making it great for sensitive skin.
4. Moisturizing socks when sleeping
Purchasing moisturizing socks that are infused with lotion are perfect to wear when sleeping. They will provide your feet extra hydration overnight, and you’ll wake up with noticeable results.
If you don’t want to purchase special moisturizing socks, you can put a substantial amount of foot lotion on before going to bed and wear a pair of cotton socks on top. This will achieve just about the same results.
5. Honey foot mask
If you’re looking for a more natural remedy to cure the dry skin on your feet, you can use honey as a foot mask.
Honey has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and can be used to heal wounds and moisturize skin.
You can simply use it as a foot mask overnight, or use it as a light scrub after doing a foot scrub.
6. Callus remover
If your issue is specifically with calluses, you can purchase a special callus remover.
People swear by this, and it acts as an extra-strength gel that you can use before exfoliating.
You just apply it to your calluses after soaking your feet, let it sit on them for a few minutes, wipe it off, then use a foot scrubber.
It’s truly magical and will make your feet look a million times better.
7. Coconut oil
Coconut oil can be another excellent natural remedy for dry skin, including eczema and psoriasis.
It is said that coconut oil retains your skin’s moisture and has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties.
8. Liquid bandage
If your skin is to the point where you have open cracks, you can use the liquid bandage to seal them up.
This is a good solution if the cracks in your skin often start bleeding. You can apply the liquid bandage and go about your day not having to worry about any bleeding happening.
9. Baby Foot Exfoliating Peel
Don’t be confused by the name; the Baby Foot Exfoliating Peel is a product made for adults.
This is a mask exfoliator for your feet. Once you use it, your skin will basically shed throughout the next week and get rid of all your dead skin.
The bottoms of your feet will be peeling a lot, so if you know you’ll be wearing sandals often, you may want to wait until the winter time to use this.
I’ve personally used this, and it really does work, it’s not just a gimmick!
10. Additional natural remedies
There are also numerous other natural remedies that you can use on your feet to keep dry skin on feet at bay.
- Oatmeal as a foot soak
- Vinegar as a foot soak
- Essential oils (like peppermint or lemongrass)
- Olive or vegetable oil
- Mashed bananas
- Shea butter
- Paraffin wax
- Oatmeal mixed with oil for exfoliation
Preventing Dry Skin On Feet
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Once you get rid of the dry skin on your feet, you’ll want to take the necessary steps to avoid it in the future.
- Don’t use body products on your feet containing alcohol, dyes, and fragrances.
- Keep your feet clean, exfoliated, and moisturized.
- Wear proper fitting shoes.
- Use warm water for showers, bath, and foot soaks — not hot.
Taking Care Of Your Feet
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Now that you have some proven methods of getting rid of dry skin on feet, choose two or three to test out over the next month or two.
You’re bound to see some results, and if you don’t, it’s probably a good idea to consult with your doctor. If nothing is working, then your dry skin could be due to a medical condition.
Do you have any tried and true methods of getting rid of the dry skin on your feet that we didn’t mention? Let us know in a comment!