Winters are harsh for the body. The pores in the body shrink and reduce the ability of the sebaceous glands to function adequately. This causes overall dryness of the skin across the body. Feet, especially the soles are more disadvantaged since they do not have the oil glands and the onset of winter does affect them quite adversely. The natural moisture content of skin reduces leading to cracked skin.
Cracked heels are ugly to look at and are obviously an embarrassment. However, more often than not, the problem is more deeper than just superficial. Cracked heels often are painful to walk with and with all the dust and pollution more complications arise. Over time, if left untreated, they become deep and often bleed.
As the winters are setting in, it’s prudent that you spend some time looking at how you can prevent cracking of heels. Check what remedies are close at hand, easy to prepare and leave you with smooth and beautiful feet that you want to flaunt. Here we have come up with 5 such remedies.
#1 – Keep Them Clothed: During winters, the ambient air is cold and is much drier. While you may not realize, it is taking out your skin moisture. No wonder you feel your facial skin tightened up and dry when you walk into a cold breeze. It’s doing the same to your feet too. So, do ensure you are wearing a good pair of socks which keep your feet warm, yet allowing it to breathe. You can also choose to wear fitting footwear to keep them safer.
#2 – Keep Them Clean: Often dirty and unmaintained feet lead to foot diseases like eczema, psoriasis fungal infections, etc. These diseases make the skin delicate and cause dryness which ultimately leads to cracking of the skin. Keep your feet clean by washing them properly with a good soap and indulge in exfoliation routines. Also, make sure you are drying up your skin completely before you apply moisturizers or foot creams. Only after the emollients are absorbed should you wear socks or footwear. These will keep the diseases at bay and continue to keep your feet look healthy and soft.
#3 – Don’t Leave Them Thirsty: As you have already realized the most important lesson here is to ensure your feet are not drying up. A daily session of applying your trusted moisturizer and massaging it well for at least 10-15 mins is a must. If the winters are harsh and your skin is generally dry you will need to repeat this at least a couple of times more. Another advice is to use oil-based moisturizers instead of water-based. The oiliness will make your skin supple reducing chances of cracking and it will also lock in your natural moisturizer for a longer duration.
#4 – Moisturize skin with essential oils: While there are many off-the-shelf moisturizers available in the market, you cannot deny the goodness of pure natural oils like virgin coconut oil, olive oil etc. These are deep nourishing oils and reach the inner layers of the skin. You can also add a few drops of essential oils or use the oil from vitamin E capsules to augment the efficacy of the treatment.
#5- Use Glycerin to soften the skin: Glycerin is another wonderful emollient that you can use. It is a humectant. Simply put, it attracts moisture into the skin and in the process softens the skin. It helps minimize water loss thus being additionally helpful during winters. Before applying glycerin, remember to get rid of all the dirt from your feet. Dip your feet in lukewarm water mixed with a soap and then use a pumice stone to get rid of the dead skin. Pat dry and apply glycerin.
These routines are well known to help, and they’ll work for you too. So, enjoy your winters and bravely step out with your wonderful feet.