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Sandal season is the time to get feet in tip-top shape. That could simply mean a fresh pedicure, but if your heels are looking cracked and dry, you’ll want to establish a proper foot care routine before applying polish. And when winter rolls around, there’s no excuse to neglect your feet either. Just because they may be hidden away in boots or sneakers doesn’t mean they don’t deserve some TLC. After all, if you suffer from dry, split heels, you know how painful they can be.
“The skin is thickest on the bottom of your feet to help minimize shock,” New York podiatrist Dr. Jacqueline Sutera explained to FN. “But over time, the stress and friction imposed on your feet from everyday mileage can cause them to become parched, cracked and in some cases even bleed.”
For soft, supple feet, we tapped into Sutera’s expertise to round up some of the most powerful over-the-counter foot creams on the market. Another pro tip? Sutera suggests exfoliating first with a pumice stone or foot file in the shower, as removing dead skin can help your feet better absorb the ingredients.
Read on to shop the expert-approved picks.
CeraVe Renewing SA Cream
Sutera says the inclusion of salicylic and hyaluronic acid make this product great for busting calluses. Meanwhile, three essential ceramides help restore and maintain the skin’s natural protective barrier.
AmLactin Foot Repair
Sutera swears by this formula as it contains lactic acid, making it strong yet gentle enough to use on all skin types. The ingredient is a natural humectant, meaning it retains moisture for ultra-nourishing effects. Meanwhile, alpha-hydroxy acids helps the skin better absorb the formula for visible results.
Kerasal Intensive Foot Repair
“The exfoliating action of this salicylic acid-based cream loosens and removes dry skin then deeply moisturizes,” Sutera says. She also notes that the formula is completely hypoallergenic and is approved by the American Podiatric Medical Association.
Profoot Heel Rescue
Sutera notes this cream contains nourishing Vitamin E and argan oil, the latter which has anti-inflammatory properties. She also loves that it’s non-greasy, lightweight and fragrance-free, making it a gentle option.
Ahava Dead Sea Mud Intensive Foot Cream
If your heels are especially dry and itchy, Sutera suggests this option will provide instant relief. It contains a vegan blend of Dead Sea mud, minerals and plant derivatives, which Sutera claims are “great for locking in moisture to protect and heal the skin.” It also includes aloe vera and shea butter extracts for hydration.
PurSources Urea 40% Foot Cream
Urea is the powerhouse ingredient in this one. Not only does it help hydrate and smooth cracked skin, but according to Sutera, it’s a powerful exfoliant for breaking down tough calluses. It also contains antibacterial tea tree oil to promote fresh, clean feet and sooting chamomile extracts.