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Remove Dry Skin from Feet – 5 Ways to Do it Right

6 mins

Rahul Bhatia

Dry, flaky skin on the feet is unsightly. But more importantly, it can lead to infections. Here are five ways to remove dry skin from feet the right way.

A pair of delicate feet slip into a gorgeous pair of sandals to go with the lovely summery weather outside. There’s just one thing that’s not quite right. The feet are dry, cracked, and flaky. There’s nothing left to do but hide these feet in a pair of stockings. 

Dry feet are unsightly. But, why hide them when you can restore them to health, leaving you with smooth feet? 

Here’s a look at five ways to remove dry skin from feet the right way.

Table of Contents:

  • How do feet become dry and cracked?
  • Why is foot health important?
  • What causes dry feet?
  • Five serious diseases accompanying dried and cracked feet
  • Five ways to remove dry skin from feet safely
  • Exfoliation
  • Foot soaks
  • Coconut oil
  • Pumice stone
  • Paraffin wax
  • Moisturizing ingredients that help remove dry skin from feet

How do feet become dry and cracked?

Dead cells continuously fall off and are replaced by new ones. When a person does not remove the build-up of dead cells regularly, it can collect on the skin and form flaky patches. The skin becomes dry, and it becomes thick and cracked over time.

Why is foot health important?

  • Unkempt feet are unsightly. Unfortunately, many people concentrate on looking after their hands and face and forget their feet. There’s no excuse not to keep your feet looking their best no matter what age you are.
  • Dry skin could lead to heel fissures. Sheets ripping near your feet is a symptom of a more significant problem – scaly, dry, and unkempt feet. Dry skin on the heels is just the beginning of cracked heels. The dry skin becomes thick and leathery with time, causing the cracks to widen. Any extra pressure on the heels causes the thick skin on the fat pads to crack and form heel fissures.
  • Cracked feet can bleed. Cracked heels are not just a cosmetic problem - deep cracks can bleed and become extremely painful If left neglected and untreated. Over time, these cracks become more profound, form fissures, and have more bleeding risks.
  • Dry and cracked feet can become infected. Severely cracked feet are in danger of becoming infected. Bacteria can enter the feet wherever the skin is ruptured and through areas of flaky, dry, or swollen skin, causing cellulitis. Recurrent cellulitis infections in the feet can be extremely dangerous because they can damage the lymphatic drainage system.
  • dry feet, feet care

    What causes dry feet?

  • Neglect is the most common reason for dry skin on feet or dry feet. Not giving your feet as much attention as the rest of your body can cause your feet to lose moisture and become dry, rough, wrinkly, and cracked.
  • Aging is a natural process but is harsh on the skin. The skin loses its ability to retain water with age, so it becomes thinner, drier, and can even become scaly.
  • Long, hot showers expose the delicate skin on your feet to hot water that robs away all the moisture from the feet, causing dead skin cells to accumulate around the soles.
  • Harsh soaps contain harmful chemicals that strip the skin of its natural oils.
  • Ill-fitting shoes fail to support the heels properly or don’t fit properly.
  • Climate plays a crucial role in the health of your feet, and cold temperatures and low humidity are the biggest culprits.
  • Certain medical conditions like diabetes, eczema, psoriasis, obesity, hypothyroidism, Sjögren’s syndrome, and athlete’s foot can lead to cracked heels.
  • Standing for extended periods can take a toll on the condition of your heels and feet because of increased foot pressure and footwear friction.
  • Obesity can affect the feet, and many obese people suffer from dry foot problems because of the extra pressure under their feet. As well as that, obese people have disturbed blood circulation that causes dry skin.
  • Five serious diseases accompanying dried and cracked feet

    What many people write off cracked heels due to neglect can also be a symptom of a more severe ailment. 

    Here are five diseases that are often accompanied by cracked heels.

  • Varicose veins: split heels are a sign of latent varicose veins. Blockages in blood vessels can cause the feet to receive very little or no nourishment, leading to cracked heels.
  • Kidney failure: There are large amounts of urea in the blood in people with kidney failure. The extra urea prevents normal blood circulation, resulting in dry skin and cracked heels.
  • Mycosis: Mycosis is a fungus that could break the top layer of skin and penetrate deeper with time. The skin surrounding the cracks can turn green or white, and it is critical to start treatment immediately before the condition worsens.
  • Gastritis: Simple dryness of the skin can indicate gastritis. Dietary changes can help alleviate these symptoms.
  • Decompensated diabetes: This is a condition that has a stable high glucose level with no treatment effect. The skin on the feet of patients suffering from this condition resembles dry, cracked ground, and the cracks are deep.

  • Five ways to remove dry skin from feet safely


    There’s no easier way to remove dead surface-layer skin than by exfoliation. There is a wide range of exfoliators for the feet, including:

    • Body brushes
    • Foot scrubs
    • Electronic callus removers.
    • Chemical exfoliators
    • Foot peels

    Chemical exfoliators and foot peels contain lactic acid, glycolic acid, and alpha-hydroxy acid that gently lift away dead cells to reveal new, hydrated skin. Scrubs contain granules that gently slough away dead cells.

    WOW Skin Science Ubtan Face & Body Scrub gently sloughs away dead skin cells and protects the skin from environmental damage. It also supports the skin’s natural renewal process, so your feet are always soft and supple. The scrub can be used on the face and body and contains vitamin-e rich almond powder that gently exfoliates the skin and prevents dryness and fine lines. Chickpea flour removes dead skin cells, and sandalwood oil helps control excess oil.

    ubtan face scrub, body scrub

    Foot soaks

    If you have very dry feet, a regular night-time routine for your feet is essential. Foot soaks are excellent for removing dry skin from feet and leaving you feeling relaxed after a long day.

    1. Soak your feet in a tub of lukewarm water for 10 minutes. The water can be mildly soapy or plain or infused with skin-softening agents and essential oils.
    2. Pat your feet dry.
    3. Gently rub the heels with a foot scrubber or loofah to loosen and sough away dead cells.
    4. Rinse your feet in warm water.
    5. Pat dry.
    6. Apply a heavy foot cream or petroleum jelly on the soles and heels. You can use the same cream or jelly on the top part of your feet or apply a moisturizer. Don’t forget the areas between the toes.
    7. Slip on a pair of cotton socks to help the moisturizer and cream work.

    Raw African Shea Body Butter is fantastic for the top and soles to repair and revive dry and rough skin. This thick and creamy butter contains shea butter, sweet almond oil, and multiple vitamins that soak into your skin to support its health.

    Coconut oil

    Coconut oil has excellent antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal, and moisturizing properties and is even recommended being used by people with eczema.

    coconut oil

    When warm coconut oil is massaged over the feet, it moisturizes them. 

    But also:

    • The fatty acids in the oil act as trans-epidermal water loss barriers that retain moisture.
    • Vitamin E and natural proteins repair damaged skin cells.
    • Saturated fats in the oil are excellent for treating dry and flaky cuticles.
    • When used daily, the oil reduces and heals cracks.
    • Topical application on the skin of the feet reduces redness, abrasions, and thickened skin considerably.
    • Coconut oil has antifungal properties. That means it can be used safely on the legs, feet, and heels daily for smooth feet and to prevent foot fungus.

    How to use warm coconut oil to remove dry skin from feet:

    1. Before you get into bed at night, wash your feet.
    2. Apply a generous amount of coconut oil on your feet and rub in circular motions.
    3. Massage the oil into the feet, between toes, soles, heels, and ankles.
    4. Pay particular attention to the nails – you can even dip your nails into a bowl of coconut oil and give them a gentle massage.
    5. Massage your feet for five to seven minutes.
    6. Cover your socks immediately after the massage with a pair of cotton socks.

    Following this routine daily will soon give you soft, crack-free, healthy feet and nails.

    If you are averse to using raw coconut oil on your feet, try WOW Skin Science Coconut Milk & Argan Oil Lotion. Not only does it smell fantastic, but this lightweight formula also melts into your skin and provides it with the nourishment it needs. WOW Skin Science Coconut Milk & Argan Oil Lotion provides medium hydration and is best for those whose feet are not too dry.

    Pumice stone

    Pumice stone made with natural lava is one of the most effective foot care tools for dry skin removal. 

    pumice stone

    When used the right way, it removes callouses and dead skin and treats infections like athlete’s foot.

    • Soak your feet in a tub filled with hot or warm water for at least 10 minutes. Soaking your feet softens dead skin, so it sloughs off easily.
    • Hold the stone in the palm of your hand and gently move it across one foot in circular or sideways motions.
    • Dip the pumice stone in water at regular intervals to keep it wet. That will help with the process.
    • Avoid rubbing the stone over injured or raw skin.
    • Repeat with the other foot.
    • Rinse feet, wipe and moisturize.

    WOW Skin Science has a wide range of creams and lotions that you can try on your feet after the pumice stone treatment.

    Paraffin wax

    Paraffin wax treatment is an essential feature of high-end spa foot treatments. That’s because paraffin wax is known to soften hard skin and get rid of dead skin patches. You can give yourself a paraffin wax treatment at home.

    Prepare a paraffin wax foot bath or melt the paraffin wax in a pan. The wax should not be too hot, or it will scald your feet. Add the wax to a tub large enough to dip your feet.

    • Dip your feet in the wax several times, so every inch of skin is covered in wax.
    • Wrap your wax-covered feet with plastic sheets and allow the wax to harden.
    • Remove the wax. Dead skin comes off along with the wax.
    • Rinse your feet and moisturize.

    Moisturizing ingredients that help remove dry skin from feet

    Some ingredients commonly found in creams, moisturizers, and body lotions are excellent for getting rid of dry, scaly skin. 

    moisturizing dry feet, dry feet care

    Here are some of the best ingredients to look out for in creams and moisturizers for your feet:

    • Hyaluronic acid
    • Jojoba oil
    • Shea butter
    • Petroleum jelly
    • Lactic acid

    Try the WOW Skin Science range of creams and moisturizers to get rid of flakes, cracks, and dry skin to reveal soft, smooth, healthy feet.

    Dry, flaky, or cracked feet are unsightly, but they can also affect your health. Ensuring you remove dry skin from your feet regularly will give you healthy and nourished feet worth showing off. Follow these tips to keep your feet in tip-top condition. However, if your dry skin condition does not improve, it might be good to see a podiatrist.

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    Rahul Bhatia

    Rahul is the published author of "Heads Or Tails" and Quora writer with over 1.6 million views. He is a keen observer who enjoys the simple joys of life. He strongly believes true beauty is not how beautiful your face is but how beautiful your heart is.

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