Cracked skin on the feet can be a minor problem that can lead to bigger problems. While cracked skin usually isn’t a big deal, cracks can lead to infection and frankly, they can be uncomfortable and no fun when wearing sandals!
Help prevent and cure this annoying and potentially painful problem by taking a look at the causes and making sure your shoes aren’t making things worse.
What Causes Cracked Heels
Cracked heels start when the skin around your heels or on your feet become dry and thick. Adding pressure to that thick, dry skin can cause cracks.
Here are some things that can add pressure to irritated skin and cause skin to crack.
- Wearing open-heeled footwear like flip flops or sandals
- Hot baths, showers, or water
- Using harsh soaps
- Cold, dry weather
- Standing for long periods
- Ill-fitting shoes
With poor fitting shoes being one of the main causes of cracked skin, it’s important to have the right shoes.
Best Shoes for Cracked Skin
Proper Fitting Shoes: Tight shoes can cause friction and pressure on the skin. Loose shoes that rub can cause the feet to slide around, causing blisters and calluses, which can then lead to cracked skin. The best type of shoe is a shoe that fits properly, with enough space to wiggle your toes but not enough to let your foot move around.
Breathable Shoes: To allow air to circulate around the feet, make sure to wear shoes that are made of breathable materials like leather, canvas or mesh. This will reduce moisture and the growth of bacteria which can lead to cracked skin.
Low Heeled Shoes: High heels aren’t just bad for your posture, they can also lead to cracked skin by causing the foot to slide forward, adding extra pressure on the toes and ball of the foot. To reduce pressure on the feet and avoid irritation, choose shoes with low or no heel and save the high heels for special occasions (and make sure to add an insole for extra support!).
Insoles for Extra Support: Cushioning and arch support are important when it comes to preventing dry skin but not all shoes offer both. If your favorite shoes don’t support your feet properly, you can add an Orange Insole to help prevent cracked skin. Orange Insole's deep heel cup locks your foot into place and helps absorb the shock from each step of walking or running. Insoles are also a great solution for those who stand on their feet for long periods of time.
If you live in a dry environment, don’t forget to regularly moisturize your feet to prevent cracks.
Your shoes not only support your feet and in turn your entire body, but they can also play a part in healing your feet rather than harming them so make sure you have the right pair!