Why Are My Feet So Dry And How To Treat Dry Feet?

Feet Care

You may quote us on this one, but dry soles are the dandruff of the feet. They are uncomfortable, embarrassing, and infuriating, but they are also very prevalent. Compared to other parts of the body, our feet actually contain fewer oil glands. Dry skin is practically a given when you combine that with improper care—and the daily injustices your feet endure. Don’t worry if you have tight, dry, rough skin or cracked heels; we’re here to explain the main causes and treatments so you can quickly return to your smoothest self.

Why Are My Feet So Dry?

The following commonplace elements can result in dry skin on the feet:

  • An absence of moisture Because the heel and sole have fewer oil glands than other parts of the body, dry, cracked, and flaky skin is more prevalent there.
  • Irritation. Long periods of standing or wearing shoes that don’t fit properly can impose persistent pressure on certain parts of the foot or cause skin to rub together. These parts of the feet may consequently become dry, calloused, or cracked.
  • dampness and heat. The inside of closed shoes, such as boots and sneakers, gets very warm and muggy. Heat and humidity dehydrate the skin, causing parts of the foot to become dry, thick, or cracked.
  • Soaps. Body washes and soaps with harsh ingredients or allergens can dry out the skin. These issues might also arise if the feet are not thoroughly washed of excess soap.
  • Aging. The skin becomes thinner and less supple as a result of losing its capacity to hold onto water over time. Due to the natural aging process, dry skin may be more common in older adults.
  • Medications. Diuretics and other drugs can contribute to dry skin on the feet.

Another cause of dry skin on the foot is a medical condition, such as:

  • Runner’s foot. A scaly rash between the toes and under the foot is the result of the fungal illness known as athlete’s foot.
  • Eczema. Eczema is the name for a collection of ailments that result in skin irritation. Eczema can appear anywhere on a person’s body. Patches of skin that are dry, crusty, or itching are typical eczema symptoms.
  • Psoriasis. Skin that is thick and scaly in patches is a symptom of the chronic autoimmune disease psoriasis. Psoriatic patches can appear practically everywhere on the body, including the foot.
  • Hypothyroidism. Due to the thyroid gland’s inability to control the sweat glands in the feet, people with hypothyroidism may experience very dry feet.
  • Diabetes. Living with uncontrolled diabetes can cause neuropathy, which is the deterioration of the peripheral nerves. The nerves that control the production of oil and moisture in the feet can be damaged by neuropathy, which can result in dry feet.

How To Treat Dry Feet?

On the skin’s surface, dead cells naturally shed and are replaced by new ones. Dead skin cells can accumulate and produce thick, flaky patches on the feet if they are not removed.

Dry spots can thicken or crack with time, especially on the heels. Thick calluses can make walking awkward or difficult, while cracked heels leave the feet open to infection.

The top five strategies to remove dead skin from the foot and treat dry skin are covered in the section that follows.

1. Exfoliate Exfoliation

Exfoliate Exfoliation is the removal of dead skin cells from the surface layer of the skin using a chemical or physical exfoliant.

Among the physical exfoliators are:

electric callus removers, body brushes, and foot scrubbers

Foot scrubs can be purchased or made at home by combining honey, warm water, and sugar.

Lotions or watery liquids are the form that chemical exfoliators take. They contain substances including glycolic acid, lactic acid, and alpha-hydroxy acid that remove dead skin cells on the skin’s surface.

Manufacturers have created foot peels, popular chemical exfoliators, specifically for the feet. Before purchasing a foot peel, it is vital to read the list of ingredients for any potential allergens or irritants. Some foot peels contain artificial perfumes and alcohols that might irritate sensitive skin.

People can utilize chemical exfoliators that are labeled as being suitable for face usage for a kinder foot peel.

Online shoppers can select from a variety of exfoliating product brands:

  • purchase foot scrubs
  • purchase foot brushes
  • shop for callus removers on the internet.

2. Soak the feet

To a foot soak, one can include various items, including oatmeal or Epsom salt.

By boosting blood circulation to the feet and soothing and moisturizing dry skin, soaking the feet in warm water can help prevent future dry skin.

A foot soak with a modest amount of vinegar may be used to treat minor cases of athlete’s foot. Strong antibacterial qualities of vinegar may assist to clean the feet and even get rid of foot odor.

Find out more about foot soaks with vinegar here.

Other advantageous components to think about include in a foot soak are:

  • Epsom salt
  • honey
  • oatmeal
  • lemon juice
  • peppermint essential oil

3. A foot file or pumice stone

To get rid of calluses and dry skin on the feet, people can use a pumice stone or metal foot file.

The steps listed below can be used to do this:

To soften the dead skin on the feet, soak them in warm water.

Wet the foot file or pumice stone with warm water.

Use a pumice stone or foot file to gently exfoliate any calluses or dead skin. Apply moderate back-and-forth motions when using a foot file and circular motions while using a pumice stone.

Rinse the feet to remove the dead skin. Whenever required, repeat step three.

Use a fresh towel to pat the feet dry.

Apply cream, lotion, or oil to the feet to moisturize them.

Pumice stones are available for purchase online or in pharmacies.

4. Hydrate.

Regular foot moisturizing will assist in reducing already dry skin and preventing the development of new dry skin. After using a pumice stone or an exfoliator, moisturizing the feet will help the skin retain moisture.

As these components can exacerbate dry skin, it is better to stay away from lotions, creams, and moisturizers that contain alcohol, additional scents, and artificial colors.

Instead, one ought to seek out goods that include:

emollients, which include plant-based butter and oils as well as humectants like urea, aloe, and hyaluronic acid, as well as occlusives like petrolatum, lanolin, and coconut oil

5. Put on hydrating socks before bed.

A person can consider wearing moisturizing gel-lined socks for added hydration. These can be made by individuals themselves or purchased online.

Natural oils and vitamins included in gel-lined socks help to moisturise and restore dry skin on the foot. The person simply needs to put on a pair and walk around the house in them for a few hours. The socks can then be washed in the washing machine and dried by air.

A good pair of cotton socks and the normal moisturizer can produce benefits that are comparable. They can massage their feet liberally before donning a pair of cotton socks that are breathable at night. They should take the socks off in the morning.

Take Care and Prevent

Dry feet may frequently be moisturized at home. Consider using these to comfort and prevent dry, cracked skin on your feet:

  • Use a foot cream every day, especially one with urea or an alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA).
  • 6 AHA aids in the removal of dead skin cells and aids in moisture retention in the epidermis (the skin’s outer layer). Glycolic acid and lactic acid are two examples of AHAs.
  • Lanolin: Lanolin works well as a moisture barrier and can be applied to rough or broken skin. Any pharmacy will sell lanolin over-the-counter (OTC). Although it can be used for any type of dry, chapped skin, it is typically marketed as a product for nursing mothers.
  • Urea cream: Urea is a naturally occurring antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and highly moisturizing substance.
  • Products that are hypoallergenic Use products designed for sensitive skin if you are prone to allergies or skin sensitivities.
  • After bathing or soaking your feet, use a foot file or pumice stone to smooth down any rough spots on the soles of your feet. The soles can avoid developing calluses by following this practice. Try using a loofah sponge or an exfoliating skin treatment to treat dry skin on the tops of the feet and legs.


Dry feet can be caused by environmental causes, aging, and various medical disorders. Home remedies including lotions, pumice stones, and switching to sensitive-skin products may help calloused feet. A podiatrist can assist with diagnosis and treatment in the absence of that.