Berkeley Parents Network >
Beauty & Fitness >
Can anyone recommend an excellent pedicure place that can help my callouses
and dry, cracked heels?
Get salicylic acid pads (Stridex or Neutrogena are good bets) for
around $6 for a jar. You can find them in the acne treatment aisle.
After scrubbing, wipe your heels (elbows, too!) with those pads and
slather in vaseline or oil. Put on socks and wear them overnight.
This made a huge difference for me.
Lisa in Oakland
Some advice I got for cracked skin on the foot from my derm--
Use two creams (one with a high amount of Urea acid. This item (no
brand was suggested) is found in the foot section of the drug store.
The second cream is aqua-phor-- found in the skin cream section.
You put one cream on in the morning and cover with socks. The other
cream is put on in the evening and you cover with socks.
When you bathe it is important to use something that rubs the rough
It's slowly working on me-- but my husband did it and is quite pleased
with his new feet!!
As I get older, my heals have gotten so dry and rough. Bleh. Try
Target brand foot/heel cream, about $3 tube, your rough heel will
start to look smooth again. Gold Bond also works but I found the
Target brand works slightly better. You will see a huge difference
in a few days. Just apply the cream and put your feet up to let it
soak in. Also, invest another couple of dollars in a pumice. Try
rubbing the heel before you get in the shower, rather than after.
Dead skin seems to rub off faster when it is dry, rather than wet.
I have chronic athlete's foot and white toenails on one foot. It comes
and goes. Recently, after quite a while without any signs of the
athlete's foot (still white toenails) and no use of slippers, I
started using slippers again after my shower and the itching came
back. I had been slipper free for a while so I was wondering if
perhaps they contributed to the fungus and bacteria. Looking back, I
always felt itchy while using slippers post-shower, and I've used many
different slippers over the years. I miss having warm slippers after a
shower, but they all seem to be damp and slow to dry out--maybe a
contribution to the fungus? I would love to find a pair that is
anti-bacterial/fungal but haven't had any luck with online searches. I
also used flip flops in the past, but I still had the athlete's foot
with those. If anyone knows of a brand and place to buy slippers that
are anti-fungal I would greatly appreciate it.
Okay. This is going to sound like a testimonial, but here goes.
I have had nail fungus on one toenail for years. Then I got the
white fungus too. I also have had recurring athlete's foot, so I
know what you're going through. Here's what is making a huge
difference for me: Apple Cider Vinegar. Yep. ACV. First the
white fungus. I have a special set of tools I use for that toe,
including one of those coarse nail buffers. A few years ago, I
went through some time buffing the top of the nail down, then
soaking it in ACV. After three days of this--three days--I had
no more white fungus. I did not keep up the program, and about
six months ago it started to come back. It got really bad, so I
thought I'd try the coarse buffer and ACV again, and yep, three
days later, no more white fungus. Now I try to do this at least
once a week to keep the fungus away, and it's working well. The
ACV helps to keep athlete's foot under control, too, and I have
used it in the wash to get rid of fungus there, too. As for
slippers, consider getting a cozy, washable slipper, and wash it
with an ACV rinse every week or so. One caution: ACV can smell
bad if you get it in a pair of shoes, especially one you wear
barefoot. So wash your feet after you do the ACV soak.
Whenever your feet are damp, try drying your feet extremely carefully,
esp. between the toes. Then apply some cornstarch, which absorbs
lingering moisture. Again, focus on the area between the toes. Won't
help the toenails but always keeps me and some others I know Athlete's
Foot free. I also have a bath mat made of cotton with a very thick
pile, which helps a bit to dry feet, too. Then I put on my washable
boiled wool slippers. You might speak with your physician about the
fungus. My dad took a pill a day (presumably anti-fungal) for a year,
and wore white socks, at his doctor's suggestion. It was the only
thing that worked for him. You can check the internet for
preventative measures, e.g., remove nail polish carefully-don't leave
it to grow out in the winter, etc. Good luck.
No longer has Athlete's Foot
the fungus is in your slippers - throw them away. wear warm
socks instead and wash them after every use. air your feet
whenever possible - sunlight is good too. make sure you dry your
feet thoroughly after they get wet (before you put anything on
them) and don't warm them so much that they sweat.
dry feet tend to be less fungal
I also enjoy wearing slippers when I get out of the shower, but
I make sure that I dry my feet off well before I put them on,
including between the toes. I also wash my slippers with my
jeans every few weeks, and dry them thoroughly in the dryer.
Drying them in the clothes dryer (instead of just letting them
air-dry) makes me feel like they are extra clean.
I am not an athletes' foot expert (although I do have it from
time to time. However, i beleive folks ahve found 2 things
about antibacterial products (and perhaps these would translate
to anti-fungal products as well.
1) They kill off ALL bacteria, including the good ones that
defend agains bad ones, thus leaving a vacuum for the bad ones
(and they encourage the production of drug resistant bacteria);
2)an antibacterial item (like a tray or a counter top or a shoe
insert (if there is one), keeps that particular material from
having bacteria withIN it, but does nto neccesarily keep
bacteria from growing ON it.
If it were me, i would put my post-shower feet in front of a
heater vent, wiggle my toes, put on powder or clitamozole, then
socks and then the slippers. I think you are correct in
assuming that you slippers are harbouring happy fungus that is
just waiting for the return of your warm, damp toes! Change and
lauder the socks often!
The problem is not the slippers but, instead, is an issue of
treating the problem as a whole. You have to make a
whole-hearted attack and keep the attack going even after
symptoms are gone, just like with antibiotics, otherwise the
strongest fungus survives and is what multiplies to create a
stronger infection next time. Including an internal attack is a
good idea, too.
I used an athlete's foot spray on regular basis throughout the
day (don't remember the specific directions) and if I had to wear
socks I changed my them during the day if possible. I also ALWAYS
sprayed my shoes, slippers, even sandals EVERY time I put them
on. I would be sure to have washable slippers and wash in hot
water at least once per week (the boiling suggestion sounds like
a good idea, too). I would do something on the shower/bathtub
floor after every use (Lysol or whatever can kill the fungus) and
be sure to follow the directions, usually let air dry and don't
rinse. Also, treat whatever you step on when coming out of the
shower and treat regularly (wash bathmat, spray floor, etc). And
keep in mind, the fungus can be on the towel you use to dry your
feet. Maybe you can use a separate hand towel each time. The
bottom line is, I think the fungus can be spread easily to almost
everything your feet touch and survive on dry surfaces for some
time. I know that some bacteria can survive for months on a dry
surface and 300yr old bottles of beer were found on the ocean
floor and were found to contain yeast that was still alive.
I never had a problem with cracked heels until I got pregnant
with my first child over 5 years ago. I've used every thing
from Aquaphor to bag balm to Neosporin and wearing socks to
sleep, but nothing seems to help. I get pedicures every two
weeks and that still doesn't help. I've even gone to a
dermatologist and that didn't solve the problem either. The
cracks can get so painful at sometimes I can't even wear
sandals on a nice day. Please help me!!!!
I had/have the exact same problem. My dermatologist prescribed Urea 40%
Cream. It worked wonders. It is now sold over the counter, but I
couldn't find it locally. I bought it online as ''Topix Urix 40 Urea
Cream''. I use it whenever my skin starts cracking, but should probably
use it everyday like my doctor said. I just don't remember. Hope it
works for you Smooth Feet
I developed the same problem after years of regular pedicures and soft
feet, and this is what works for me: use a pumice stone on the worst
parts (usually the heels and balls of the foot), which are available in
all major drug stores, while you are in the shower at least every other
day. Be pretty vigorous with the pumice, as it really does remove excess
dry skin. Then, lotion your feet well afterward so that they don't get
super dry during the day. At night, wash your feet, use vaseline (not my
fave, but it works) or a lotion like Miracle Foot Repair (my favorite),
available at Walgreen's for sure, and wear socks to bed. This really
does work to keep down the scruff and callous build-up. And, if you can
find a pedicurist who illicitly uses the razor shaving method (it's
illegal), you will find your feet being much softer between peds.
I have this problem occasionally too - it really hurts!!!! I find that
this condition is invariably aggrevated in me when I wear sandals - you
might want to note whether the condition is associated with any
behaviors on your part, so you can eliminate them.
In addition to doing all the things that you mention (as well as wearing
shoes with socks for awhile) I use a scrub buffer on my heels - I got
one from the pedicure place. It's not a pumice stone but some kind of
rough thick pad that I use to scrub off the top layer of skin. Finally,
there is also a product called Pretty Feet and Hands which I just
started using which takes off the top layer of skin as well and it
actually works. I think you said you saw a dermatologist? Mine gave me
a strong anti-fungal AND and exfoliant to use alternatively (though I
haven't yet used them!).
Hope it helps. I can relate to your suffering!
I've had the cracked heel problem for the past three years and found the
solution to be three-fold:
1) Stop wearing sandals. Flip-flops, Tevas, Keens, clogs, any kind of
open-heeled shoes exacerbate the problem because important oils and
moisture are lost through the day.
2) Put Vaseline liberally on your feet and then put socks on them for
3) Use that liquid Bandaid product which is a kind of ''glue'' for
wounds. It accelerates the healing.
Simple but it works
- Been There, Done That
I have a lifetime of experience with cracked heels and finally
(!) this summer not a single crack. Here's what I do
1) no flip flops! Seriously, it sucks, but part of the problem is any
sort of backless shoe. When your foot can slide from side to side when
you walk, it pulls on your skin/calluses and starts a fissure.
2) Flexitol heel balm, available in the foot care section of your drug
store (& cheap!)
3) silicone-heeled sleep socks, to keep the flexitol in place, also sold
in the footcare section
4) a metal rasp/file from Dr. Scholls. I use this on each heels every
single morning when I get out of the shower, and then
5) thickly lotion my heels every morning.
Hope this helps. Lots of this advice came from a podiatrist - and if
you're having a real problem I really recommend you visit one. The key
is doing all of this stuff consistently, every day crackless
You might ask your doctor to check your thyroid levels. dry skin,
particularly cracked heels, can be an indicator. It's a simple blood
test cracked up too
Have you been wearing mostly sandals since you gave birth? I also
developed this problem over the last few years and solved it after I
read an article by a podiatrist that described the damage that can be
done to heels from wearing sandals and flip- flops all the time. Your
heels get damaged and cracked from all the friction. I've switched back
to regular shoes and my heals are slowly recovering Whitney
I had this forever until my dermatologist suggested the following
treatment plan. If your problem is really bad like mine was, seeing a
dermatologist can help you rule out other problems.
- Do not scrub or scrape the area with stones or heaven forbid, a blade
- Apply Keralyt Gel 2/day on affected area for a week-10 days, until
skin is smooth
- Once healthy skin is restored, use U-Lactin to prevent recurrance
- Weekly/bi-weekly pedicures help keep skin smooth and exfoliated
- Use a rich natural cream every night on your feet, like the heavy foot
cream or the Karite butter from L'Occitane, then slip on a pair of
socks. Spa treatment while you sleep!
just sign me barefootin' mama
I have heard that cracked heels can be caused by a type of athletes foot
fungus (that has gone untreated). Have you tried an althletes foot
regimen? That would be my next step.
Hope this helps!
I had this as a child and it was diagnosed as excema. I don't recall
which topical ointment I used, I'm sure your doctor will know. But the
key for me was that after applying the ointment, my mother would wrap my
feet in saran wrap and than put socks over my feet to lock the moisture
in overnight. It's not the most comfortable way to sleep but it really
helped me alot!
Hope this Helps!
I don't know if you've tried Flexitol Heel Balm yet, but it's worked
wonders for me. I used it twice a day for a couple of weeks until my
cracked heels got better, then just continued to use it once a day to
keep them in good shape. I bought it at Albertsons, so I'd assume it's
pretty widely available. Good luck!
You might want to try a product called MIRACLE FOOT. You can get it at
any pharmacy or safeway. I think it's the best thing i've seen for what
you're describing. I also recommend getting pedicures every two to three
weeks. My feet seemed to get worse after the birth of my second child
and using the miracle foot cream and the pedicures keeps it under
I have found a product called Amlactin to work amazing well.
After 1 week of applying it on your feet before bed you will see a
remarkable improvement. Works great for hands and elbows too.
You can ask your doctor for a prescription. I found it available
without a prescription at Costco but I don't know if it is something
they carry regularly.
I get Cracked Heels when I visit home (New Mexico). Neutrogena Hand
Cream helps a bit. It's sort of expensive but it works well. You can
get special socks occasionally at Bath & Body works or similar shops
that you can wear after you put cream on. They help too, no matter what
you slather on. Jennifer
on the cracked heels topic, i believe myself to be an experienced
hand (feet, actually). i always wear sandals, summer and winter, as i
have bony feet and any shoes with more weight are burdensome. ten or so
years ago (in my 50's then), i began to experience the cracked heels you
mention. at the time i was wearing only birkenstocks, although now i
have switched to ecco brand sandals. so one day while at the birkie
store on college, i happened to mention my recently cracking heels to
the nice woman (manager, i think). she instantly said that the problem
was driness and all i needed to do was wear socks.
you mention that you have tried socks (to bed at night) and it
didn't help. i recommend trying them in the daytime also and you might
need to do this most of or all winter. most of the summer i am fine
without socks, but as soon as there is the first bit of cooler (or
drier???) weather, the cracks return.
usually (starting a couple of weeks ago or so) i ignore the cracks for a
few days, thinking that it isn't that cold yet and the cracks will
surely go away. you'd think i would learn (year after year) and
hopefully by next year i will have the drill down a bit better. but
finally, each year, i realize the problem isn't going to go away on its
own and i don my socks again (i wear 'em 24/7, even to bed to keep me
warm). like you, at first i am frustrated, as the cracks (and, more to
the point, the
pain) in my heels continue on unabated for what seems like forever (1-3
weeks, i'd guess). but eventually (like within the last couple of days
finally) both the cracks AND the pain
(thankfully) disappear. as long as i wear socks every day all winter
(and once i have started the routine, i have no problem continuing it),
there are no more problems.
so my advice: put on your socks and keep 'em on at least till some
warm spring days. it may take awhile for the existing cracks to heal,
but in this case perseverence furthers, at least it did for me and of
course i hope the same proves true for you.
socks do wear out and i need to keep buying new ones, but it sure
beats drugs and pedicures which you mentioned. good luck and, please,
let me hear from you, if you have time
I'm looking for someone who can provide me with foot care. I
have serious fungus, my toenails are almost all riddled with
flaky fungus, sometimes my toenails fall off from the
condition. The rest of my feet are also in bad shape - lots of
flaky skin shedding all the time and my feet hurt and itch
constantly. I have consulted a podiatrist, he didn't seem to
know what to do. This seems like a pretty common condition,
although not to the extent I have it. Do you know of anyone who
cares for this condition - podiatrist, pedicurist, alternative
medicine practitioner? I'm open to any suggestions. Thanks.
I'm stunned that a podiatrist wasn't able to help you with your toenail fungus
problem. I consulted a Kaiser podiatrist when I had a mild case on a big toenail that
I got from my boyfriend, who has a really bad established case (that he doesn't want
to deal with). He told me that since mine was just beginning that I might be able to
treat it successfully with a combination of Lamisal cream and Myconizal cream. I
took it upon myself to file the surface of my nail (pretty vigorously) first to get the
creams inside, and it worked over a period of about 3 months. But mine wasn't
advanced, and the surface filing was my own idea.
I know that Lamisal is prescribed internally in pills for bad cases, and also that
surgical removal of the infected nails is done sometimes. I'd suggest consulting
either a regular medical doctor or another podiatrist. perhaps after first ascertaining
that it is something that they know how to treat. A pedicurist is not a doctor and
toenail fungus is a medical condition, so don't even consider that.
For the dry flaky skin, I use foot creams (right now I use one called Pedicure from
the drugsatore). I put it on heavily at night after washing and drying my feet, and
then sleep in socks. It helps a lot. It is also possible that you have athletes foot,
which can occur other places besides just between the toes, so you might want to
try mixing in some Lamisal with the foot cream. Lamisal cream is not cheap, but it is
the one that doctors recommend (it used to be prescription) and I find that it
absolutely the best for athletes foot.
When your foot skin is healed up some, you can try gently using a scrubber- I don't
know what they are actually called but many manicurist shops sell them and they
are gentler and more effective than pumice stones- and slowly start exfoliating
some of that thick itchy skin.
I don't have any advice for you about toenail fungus but there is
a lot of advice on the website that might be helpful
I do have advice about dry, cracked feet. I have really dry skin
and my feet are the driest crackedest grossest-looking feet ever,
especially in the summer when I go barefoot or wear flipflops.
Here is what I do that really does help: 1) get one of those foot
sanders - sort of like a big plastic emery board for feet. I think Dr.
Scholls makes them. I sand and sand my heels, and it smooths out
the skin a LOT and gets rid of the dry dead skin. I try to do it
a few times a week. Pumice stone does not work for me - only the
sanders. Try it in the shower. 2) After EVERY shower, rub lotion into your feet,
especially the soles. I love EO Foot Balm - nice peppermint &
lavender smell. I get mine at drugstore.com but I have also seen
it at Star Grocery, Elmwood Pharmacy, and and beauty supply stores. 3) I find that if I paint my
toenails I am more likely to remember to do these things.
this page was last updated: Oct 16, 2010
BPN is now a 501(c)(3) non-profit and we are building a new website!
Read more, and see how you can help:
The opinions and statements expressed on this website
are those of parents who subscribe to the
Berkeley Parents Network.
Disclaimer & Usage for
information about using content on this website.
Copyright © 1996-2014 Berkeley Parents Network