Cracked heels are a common problem, even for people who don’t work in harsh conditions for their feet. They’re mostly a nuisance but can become serious issues when left untreated. It can also be uncomfortable when walking barefoot.
The causes of cracked heels include standing for long hours, wearing open sandals, taking long hot showers, using harsh soaps, wearing ill-fitting shoes, and cold or hot dry weather. Medical conditions, such as fungal infections, hypothyroidism, obesity, pregnancy, ageing, dermatosis, or palmoplantar keratoderma—which is the abnormal thickening of palm and feet skin.
Home remedies for cracked heels
Heel balms are moisturizers, exfoliators, and softeners that you can use on cracked heels. They should have urea, salicylic acid, alpha-hydroxy acids, and saccharide isomerate to help remove the dead skin. The best way to apply is every morning to provide skin elasticity. You should moisturize at least twice a day and wear shoes at all times to prevent further cracking.
Some heel balms can cause stinging. However, in severe reactions, you should see a doctor or dermatologist. You may need stronger creams if you experience inflammation or itching. Other moisturizers include olive oil, vegetable oil, shea butter, oatmeal mixed with oil, and paraffin wax.
2. Soak your feet
The skin around cracked heels is denser and drier than the rest of your soles. As a result, it ends up splitting due to the pressure applied from walking. Soaking your feet routinely makes them easier to exfoliate.
Steps for soaking your feet:
- Ensure your feet are clean.
- Soak your feet in lukewarm water for about 20 minutes. You can add vinegar to the soak.
- After this, use a pumice stone, loofah, or scrubber to remove the hard skin.
- When you’re done, dry your feet gently.
- Apply a thick moisturizer or Vaseline. You can apply petroleum jelly on your heels after applying moisturizer. But you can apply jelly alone if you don’t have any moisturizer.
- Wear thick socks to seal the moisture.
Don’t scrub your feet when they’re dry. You should also avoid using a razor to peel off the dry skin. This can lead to cuts or abrasions, increasing the infection risk. In addition, you can get moisturizing heel sleeves containing oils to help soften the heels. These are great when you don’t have highly thick heels.
Lifestyle: 6 Tips On How To Create A Home Spa Night
3. Coconut oil
Coconut oil can treat dry skin and conditions like eczema and psoriasis. You can use coconut oil after a foot soak. Coconut oil is a moisturizer, and it has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.
11 Reasons You Should Be Using Coconut Oil
Honey can help heal and cleanse wounds. It also has antimicrobial properties. You can scrub your feet after a soak or as a foot mask when you sleep. Ensure you wear socks to prevent the stickiness from spreading over your sheets.
Health: 8 Benefits Of Honey You Should Know About
5. Specialized sprays
There are over-the-counter and prescription liquid bandages that come as a spray. You can use them to seal the cracks in your heels. This prevents the cracks from growing deeper or forming infections. It’s a viable option if your cracks are prone to bleeding. Spray according to the instructions after cleaning and drying your feet.
Avoid using superglue or industrial products because they may be toxic. If you have exposed skin, you shouldn’t put it in contact with potentially poisonous products.
If a medical condition causes your cracked feet, don’t use home remedies to treat them. You may need to see a podiatrist to manage the symptom and get treatment for other conditions.
Beauty: 7 Benefits Of Getting A Pedicure
7 Benefits Of Shea Butter On Skin And Hair
Lifestyle: Self Care Ideas On A Budget
Lifestyle: Here Are 8 Easy Things To Do To Pamper Yourself Ladies
Skincare Tips For Whole Body Care
Health: Home Remedies For Athlete’s Foot
Foot Therapy: 5 Ways To Soothe Your Tired Feet After A Long Day