Dry or scaly skin on feet is embarrassing – especially when you live somewhere like New Zealand where sandals are a way of life. You deserve to show off your lovely feet without fear of exposing your dry, peeling, or scaly skin.

Are you 100% sure your scaly skin is really just dry skin?

Many people may not realize that scaly or peeling skin on feet may actually be a mild form of athlete’s foot.

Here’s how to tell the difference and how to get your feet looking soft, smooth, and bright – regardless of the cause. By the time you’re done with this regimen, you’ll be looking for an excuse to wear sandals every chance you get.

What Causes Scaly Skin on Feet?

A lot of factors can cause scaly or cracked skin to appear on your feet. Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes.

1.    Chronic Dehydration

Up to 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. This number probably isn’t much better in other developed nations (and underdeveloped nations with poor access to clean water.) Chronic dehydration leads to a wide range of problems including sore joints and muscles, cracked and dry skin, headaches, ulcers, and high blood pressure.

2.    Obesity or Weight Gain

When your body carries extra weight, this puts a lot of pressure on your knees, ankles, and feet leading to excessively dry skin and cracked feet.

3.    Thyroid or Kidney Problems

Your thyroid is responsible for regulating just about every process in your body. If you’re suffering from a minor form of hypothyroidism, you may not notice the subtle symptoms like excessive tiredness, minimal weight gain, and, yes: scaly skin on feet.

The kidneys are responsible for flushing waste from your body. If your kidneys aren’t in the best shape or your body is overloaded with toxins, this can impact your skin health in a number of ways including dry skin.

4.    Aging

Oh, isn’t aging fun? Everyday, your skin seems to get a little dryer and less resilient. You’ll probably notice new skin problems crop up every day – this can absolutely include persistent dry skin or peeling skin on your feet.

5.    Wearing the Wrong Footwear

If your shoes fit either too snuggly or loosely, this can cause unwanted friction between your feet and footwear. Although you may not notice any blisters, you’ll surely notice the dry skin.

6.    Vitamin Deficiencies

Your body requires various nutrients just like it requires sufficient amounts of water each day. Lacking any of the important vitamins like A, D, E, or potassium can cause excessively dry skin – especially when compounded with other environmental conditions like dehydration or weight gain.

7.    Chronic Skin or Medical Conditions

Diabetics should pay special attention to foot health. Cracked skin on diabetic feet can lead to severe infections. If you think you may have diabetes, see a doctor for blood work.

Do you experience dry skin conditions in other places besides your feet – like dandruff on your scalp or peeling elbows? If so, the scaly skin on your feet may be from eczema or psoriasis.

That Scaly Skin on Your Feet Could Be a Fungal Infection

Many people don’t realize that athlete’s foot looks – and feels – a lot like dry skin.

If the scaly skin on your feet burns, feels excessively itchy, or spreads up your ankle and between your toes, it could very well be a fungal infection.

Say “Goodbye” to Dry, Peeling, or Scaly Feet

Getting rid of dry skin isn’t easy but it is possible – it just takes a little work. Stick to this plan and the scaly skin on your feet will be gone before you know it.

  1. Drink enough water. Consume fruits and veggies with a high water content.
  2. Eliminate alcohol, salts, and sugars from your diet to stay hydrated and keep your kidneys running smoothly.
  3. Consume lots of antioxidants and essential vitamins like A, D, E, and potassium – vitamin E is vital for skin and hair health.
  4. Consider adding a hair, skin, and nails supplement to your diet.
  5. Exfoliate: use a pumice stone to get rid of the thickest layer of dry skin.
  6. Follow up with a filing paddle to buff or smooth everything out.
  7. Use a natural salt, sugar, or coffee scrub to polish your feet and begin the moisturizing process.
  8. Select an ointment or lotion with powerful skin-healing essential oils like manuka, lavender, or frankincense.
  9. After applying ointment or lotion, add a thick layer of petroleum jelly to lock-in moisture and cover your feet with an ace bandage or breathable socks.
  10. Repeat the exfoliation and moisturization process as often as needed.
  11. Enjoy your smooth feet!

If your feet are cracked and bleeding, make sure to select an ointment with antibacterial properties. Manuka essential oil contains powerful triketones which give the oil its potent antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal enzymes.

If you have athlete’s foot, manuka can help with that too thanks to its antifungal properties. Make sure to disinfect all clothing – especially your shoes. Athlete’s foot is extremely contagious. Don’t walk barefoot anywhere and don’t share linens to avoid spreading the fungus