Your skin is a fascinating organ capable of so many things, which means every inch of it should be cared for. While you may already maintain your face and the parts of your skin that you see every day by using a skincare regimen, it’s not unusual for most to forget about taking care of your feet. The skin of your feet, especially at the bottom, is tougher and thicker than other parts of your skin, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t receive the same TLC. Here are a few ways to properly care for your feet so they can be smooth, moisturized, and ready to take you where you need to go every day.
This is an essential skin practice for the rest of your skin, which means your feet shouldn’t be an exception. Between walking, running, being in shoes, and standing, your feet go through a lot each day, and when they aren’t maintained, they can become dry and cracked. To keep your feet smooth and pampered, apply a lotion or cream that contains an emollient, a humectant, or petrolatum to allow your skin to receive ample moisture to last you throughout the day. It is also a good idea to moisturize your feet after bathing, and more than once a day during colder months of the year. Treating dry, cracked feet early can prevent further issues down the road, and can make you feel more confident while wearing flip flops and sandals during the summer.
Use Sun Protection
When you use sunscreen before spending a day in the sun, think of the typical places you apply it. Your face, neck, shoulders, back, legs, arms, scalp, etc. are some of the usual spots, but do you remember the tops of your feet? If you are wearing socks or shoes, this isn’t usually necessary, but a day on the beach in your bare feet or a day in flip flops without sun protection could lead to some painful foot sunburns. Make sure you remember to apply sunscreen to every exposed area of skin (including your feet), cover up with sun protective clothing, and seek shade or head indoors during the hottest parts of the day, which are usually between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. when the sun’s UV rays are the most powerful. Making a habit of applying sunscreen every day can prevent burns and reduce your risk of skin cancer, so make sure all parts of your skin are protected.
Exfoliating is a great solution for ridding your skin of excess dead skin cells that stick around on your skin, and can help your skin stay silky smooth. If that dry, cracked skin on the bottom of your foot is bothering you, using a good foot scrub can help slough away any dead skin or dryness. Whenever your feet are feeling extra dry or cracked, grab your scrub and exfoliate away, but be sure to avoid exfoliating more than twice per week to prevent irritation, which can be especially painful on the bottoms of your feet. It’s best to make sure you wash your feet each time you shower as well, which can help rid your skin of any dead skin cells or cracked areas on the soles.
Prevent and Treat Fungus
It’s no secret that your feet can get pretty gross and sweaty, especially considering how often we use them every day and your lifestyle. Unfortunately, foot fungus or athlete’s foot can pop up from time to time if you suffer from sweaty feet, so it’s important to keep an eye on your feet and treat the issue as soon as possible before it becomes worse and more difficult to treat. Foot fungus can make your feet feel itchy or it can create a burning sensation, so it’s best to see a specialist as soon as you can. First, be sure to see your podiatrist for diagnosis and to determine a proper treatment plan. Your doctor may recommend an over-the-counter treatment, such as a lotion, spray, powder, or liquid that can zap the fungus while protecting your feet from more fungus that could develop. Before applying a treatment, make sure your feet are dry and sweat-free, and always seek help from your podiatrist with any other foot concerns, skin-related or not.
Just because you don’t look at the bottoms of your feet every day doesn’t mean your feet should be neglected when it comes to skincare. Between moisturizing, exfoliating, treating athlete’s foot, and more, there are plenty of ways to make sure your feet are well maintained so you can get from point A to point B with no trouble.