Dry skin on feet – What can I do to keep my feet smooth and soft?

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The skin on our feet is particularly prone to dryness, and symptoms worsen as we get older. Dry feet can also lead to more significant foot problems such as calluses and cracked heels. This article explains what causes dry feet and how best to care for them. We look at how effective moisturization strengthens skin’s protective barrier and leaves skin looking and feeling healthy.

What causes dry skin on feet?

The structure of skin on our feet makes it particularly prone to dryness
Feet are particularly prone to dry skin

There are many different potential causes of dry skin on feet: 

  • Lack of natural moisturization: The skin on our feet doesn’t have sebaceous glands (that glands that produce oils) and therefore is particularly susceptible to dryness
  • Skin type: Our genetics determine our skin type and some people have naturally drier skin than others.
  • Age: As we get older our skin tends to dry out. This is why dry feet become more noticeable with age. 
  • Underlying skin condition or medical condition: People who suffer from eczema, psoriasis or diabetes often experience dry skin on their feet as a side effect. - Inappropriate foot care: Washing feet in water that is too hot and using harsh cleansers that strip skin of its natural oils can exacerbate dryness.
  • The environment: Cold weather, low humidity and the sun are all known to dry out skin.

You can find out more about other foot conditions in our article say goodbye to hard skin.

What’s the best way to care for dry feet?

Dry feet will benefit from regular moisturization
Wear cotton socks over your moisturizer at night to intensify the effects

Dryness is not a concern but, if left untreated, dry skin on feet can develop into thickened calloused skin (which can be unsightly) and then cracked skin or corns (which can also be painful). It’s important that we give dry feet the moisturization they need before their condition worsens. We recommend that you moisturize dry feet twice daily with Elastoplast Dry Feet Moisturizing Cream.

Elastoplast Dry Feet Moisturizing Cream contains 10% Urea. Urea is one of skin’s own moisturizing factors and it helps skin to attract and retain the hydration it needs to be healthy, soft and smooth. It is ideal for use on diabetic skin.

 In addition to regular moisturization the following steps will help give dry feet the care they need:

  • Wash feet in warm rather than hot water and use a mild cleanser specially formulated for dry skin. Rinse off thoroughly. 
  • Pat rather than rub feet dry
  • Regularly and carefully remove hard skin on your heels with a pumice stone, foot file and/or an exfoliating footcare product such as Elastoplast Callus Scrub & Care 
  • After applying the moisturizing cream in the evening, wear cotton socks to bed to seal it in so it can work overnight to hydrate and soften your skin
  • Be kind on your feet by wearing shoes that fit well and don’t pinch, rub or put your feet under undue pressure. And change your shoes regularly.

If your dry feet are causing you a concern in any way, consult your doctor for advice.

Where can I find out more about feet?

This article gives you an overview of dry skin on feet. You can read more about the four main foot concerns, and find out how they are interconnected, in say goodbye to hard skin. For more information on each of the other conditions go to callus-free feet, no more cracked feet or corns.

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