How to Heal Cracked Heels in 3 Steps

woman in slingbacks

 Christian Vierig / Getty Images

A natural enemy of sandals, slingbacks, and more of your beloved backless footwear, cracked heels are not only embarrassing to display but can cause significant discomfort, too. For many women, this common issue isn’t just inconvenient; it's also painful.

Fortunately, cracked heels can be resolved more easily than you may think. It’s also possible to heal cracked heels using only natural, non-toxic ingredients, many of which you may already have on hand. To help you put your best foot forward, we’ve gathered a few of our favorite ways to heal cracked heels.

Read on to learn how to heal cracked heels with three simple solutions.

how to fix cracked heels
Michela Buttignol/Byrdie 
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First, Soak and Exfoliate Your Heels

Cracked heels may be common, but this favorite solution is pure luxury. Since the skin on the base of the foot—especially in the heel area—is thicker and tougher than on other parts of the body, it requires a bit more effort to soften and moisturize. One of the best ways to do this is with a foot soak.

Simply fill a tub or basin with lukewarm water, then add in a bit of cleansing Heinz white vinegar ($3). After about 10 to 15 minutes, remove your feet and gently exfoliate using a pumice stone or loofah, then pat dry with a clean towel.

super soak healing bath salts
Plant Apothecary Super Soak Organic Healing Bath $32
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Then Apply a Buttery Heel Balm

One of the easiest and most effective solutions to heal cracked heels is by using an all-natural heel balm. Simply massage the balm into cracked skin that's clean and dry, ideally immediately after a foot soak. To avoid slipping (or leaving a trail of heel balm in your wake), be sure to wear socks after applying. A similar option is to wear moisturizing heel sleeves ($10), which nourish skin while trapping moisture to prevent further damage to the skin.

coconut foot creme
Burt's Bees Coconut Foot Creme $10
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Moisturize the Natural Way

What’s good for the inside of the body tends to be good for the outside, and several of the best substances for healing cracked heels are superfoods. One of nature’s most perfect moisturizers, coconut oil is a natural healing solution that’s also antimicrobial.

Coconut Oil
Barlean's Coconut Oil $14

Likewise, raw cacao butter has incredible moisturizing properties and is gaining plenty of traction when it comes to maintaining skin health. Scientific research has found that the bioactive compounds found in cocoa are effective for protecting the skin.

Sunfood Super Foods Cacao Butter
Sunfood Super Foods Raw Cacao Butter $22

Olive oil is another favorite natural moisturizer and can also serve as a soothing addition to foot soaks.

olive oil
Lucid 100% Olive Oil $40

Perhaps one of the most surprising ways to heal cracked heels is honey, which has long been praised for its medicinal properties. In addition to soothing breakouts, honey has also been found to help soften skin.

raw honey
Honeyville Raw Honey $12

Of course, if the cracks are especially deep or seem to be symptomatic of a more serious issue, smoothing cracked heels may be more involved than a trip to the pantry. Don’t be shy about consulting a podiatrist, and you’ll be on the right path to restoring your feet in no time.

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