One of the most neglected body parts has to be our feet. And with salons shut for the last two months, even the occasional pedicure we once indulged in is no longer part of our body care routine. What’s worse, the constant walking around the house barefoot has left our feet drier than before and our heels rough and cracked. Sigh!

But in order to have really soft, conditioned and crack-free feet, you’re gonna need more than just an at-home pedicure. We got in touch with Dermatologist Dr. Niketa Sonavane (@drniketaofficial) from Ambrosia Aesthetics to help us figure out everything about foot care – from what causes dryness to the best and most effective way to treat severely cracked feet. Read on for all the deets…

 

Wear closed shoes

Wear closed shoes

The first tip to caring for severely dry and cracked heels, according to Dr. Niketa is to wear the right kind of footwear. “People who wear closed footwear usually do not face the problem of dry feet or cracked heels because whatever little oil that your feet produce get trapped into the skin, keeping them nourished. Additionally, exposure to external elements such as dirt and dust reduces considerably when you wear closed shoes because your feet tend to stay more protected,” she says.

 

Exfoliation and moisturisation are two key steps for healthy feet

Exfoliation and moisturisation are two key steps for healthy feet

Dr. Niketa says, “Two things are very important when it comes to caring for dry and cracked feet - exfoliation and moisturisation. The first step helps to get rid of all the dry and dead skin, while the second step helps to increase the moisture levels.” Use the St. Ives Radiant Skin Pink Lemon & Mandarin Orange Scrub as it offers deep and thorough exfoliation, which is needed for anyone with severe dry skin on the feet. Next, moisturise your feet with a rich body lotion such as the Love Beauty & Planet Argan Oil and Lavender Aroma Soothe and Serene Body Lotion to provide moisture to dry feet. heels. .

 

The ingredients in your foot cream matter

The ingredients in your foot cream matter

There are two types of ingredients in foot creams - exfoliants and humectants. According to Dr. Niketa, “Urea is a great ingredient to have in your foot cream. It helps in breaking down dead cells, but is also extremely moisturising at the same time, providing the nourishment your skin needs.” When it comes to humectants, look for ingredients such as glycerine, jojoba oil, shea butter or cocoa butter and the Vaseline Heel Cream is the perfect choice. “But ensure that you apply moisturising heel creams only in the night, because if you do so during the day, they will end up attracting more dust and trap it on the skin,” warns the doctor.

 

Regular pedicures go a long way

Regular pedicures go a long way

Dr. Niketa says, “Pedicures definitely do help in healing and repairing dry feet and cracked heels to a great extent. They help in eliminating dead skin cells, moisturising and nourishing your feet. But the key to ensuring that a pedicure works is regularity.” She also mentions that one must go to a salon that practises topnotch hygiene and sanitisation in order to avoid contracting fungal infections and other foot allergies.

 

Foot soaks help a lot

Foot soaks help a lot

“The most basic way to eliminate dead skin cells,” says Dr Niketa, “is to indulge in a foot soak with ingredients that boost moisture, repair, as well as prevent cracked heels. “Bath salts or magnesium salts are really great ingredients to add to your foot soak as they help to exfoliate dead skin and push moisture inside. If you don’t have bath salts, you can always use pink salt or Himalayan salt in their place for equally great results.”

 

Try foot sock masks for amazing results

Try foot sock masks for amazing results

Foot sock masks are a god-send for people with severely dry and cracked heels. There are two types of foot sock masks available. One is a peeling mask that helps to eliminate dead skin cells for up to a week. And the second type is a moisturising foot mask with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and glycerine. “Just ensure that if you always pick up both the masks as using one without the other won’t deliver the desired result,” says Dr. Niketa.

 

Dr. Niketa’s everyday tips to prevent dry feet and heal cracked heels

Dr. Niketa’s everyday tips to prevent dry feet and heal cracked heels

  • Each time you step out of the house, ensure that you’re wearing socks as that will help to trap in the moisture, and prevent dust, dirt and other impurities from latching onto your feet.
  • Wash your feet thoroughly using a gentle cleanser and water immediately after coming home to get rid of impurities.
  • Each night, apply a thick layer of a foot cream or any rich body lotion, then wear socks and go to bed. This will ensure that you wake up to soft and supple feet. For extreme cases, Vaseline Petroleum Jelly works wonders.
  • If you don’t have time for a regular pedicure, simply soak your feet in bath salts for 15 minutes, scrub away dead skin, apply a foot cream and wrap your feet in cling film for 15 minutes. This is a great trick to heal cracked heels and dry feet faster.