Self-Care: How to Soften Dry, Rough Feet

Dry, cracked feet are never a good look (or feel!). It’s time for a little TLC that will take your soles from tough and rough to silky soft. #selfcaresunday

feet in cozy socks

Photo by Stocksy

Photo by Stocksy

The Cause

Your feet are prone to dryness for a few reasons. They have only sweat glands, not oil glands, according to Ava Shamban, MD, a Beverly Hills–based dermatologist. As such, they also endure constant sweating and then drying, which causes skin to crack, she says. Plus, your skin has a hard time staying moisturized as it ages. So basically, your feet are in need of a pampering session, stat! 

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3 Steps to Smooth

To soften your feet, follow this routine weekly—but moisturize (see step 3) as often as you can. Trust us, your feet will thank you!

1. Start with a 20-minute soak. Fill the tub with warm water and add at least half a cup of kosher or Epsom salt. You can try Dr Teal’s Moisturizing Foot Soak (walmart.com, $4). The saline water will help draw out impurities.

2. While feet are still wet, remove dead skin by exfoliating with a pumice stone or an exfoliating scrub, like Earth Therapeutics Cooling Foot Scrub (ulta.com, $9).

3. Apply a foot cream before bed to instantly boost moisture. To remove rough patches, go for one with lactic acid, like Ahava Dermud Intensive Foot Cream (ahava.com, $29). It also helps strengthen skin to prevent future cracking. 

dry cracked feet

Photo by Getty Images

Photo by Getty Images

Treat Calluses

You can credit friction from tight-fitting shoes for these thick-skinned spots. Instead of going to town on them with a pumice stone, do a daily application of a cream that contains urea, which quickly breaks down calluses and softens. Try Eucerin Roughness Relief Spot Treatment (cvs.com, $7).

Overnight Treat
After applying cream, slip on cotton socks for softer heels by morning.