Skin knowledge Guide What to do with cracks on the heels?
Woman feels cracks on heels with hand

What to do with cracks on the heels?
Everything about the causes and prevention of chapping

Struggling with dryness and cracking on your heels? Here you can learn more about the prevention and treatment of unpleasant chapped skin.

What can be the causes of cracks on the heels?

Dry skin on the heels can have many causes. The most common cause is genetic predisposition to dry skin (atopic diseases, e.g. atopic dermatitis, hay fever, asthma, allergies). Further causes are the aging process of the skin and climatic conditions such as dry air in winter. Other reasons can be pressure-related deficiency due to incorrect footwear, standing for long periods of time or wearing of compression stockings. Sometimes diseases such as diabetes or medications (for example, some cancer therapies) are also responsible. If the dryness on the feet intensifies, this can lead, for example, to small cracks on the heels and finally to fissures (so-called rhagades). These can be recognized by deep furrows in the skin where the tissue breaks open. To prevent the cracks on the heels from getting deeper and eventually becoming inflamed, it is important to treat rhagades properly or, even better, to prevent rhagades from forming in good time.

How can you prevent dry, cracked skin on heels and feet?

To avoid dry heels in general, precaution can do a lot. To prevent brittle and dry patches from forming in the first place, you should regularly take a foot bath for about 10 to 20 minutes. This softens the skin and you can carefully remove the callus, i.e. the excess, dead skin cells mechanically with a pumice stone.

You should also give your feet sufficient moisture. Dry your feet carefully after a foot bath or an extensive shower. Afterwards, apply a foot cream that has been specially developed for the care of extremely dry and rough feet.

Also make sure that your shoes fit properly. This will help you avoid pressure points and prevent cornification on the heels. For diabetics in particular, but also for those with excessive callus formation, regular foot care treatment by a podiatrist is also recommended.

Close up cracks on the heels

Treatment of cracks on the heels and feet

If, despite good care, you develop cracks or chapped heels, it is advisable to treat them specifically. Cracks on the heels are not only unsightly, but can also cause severe pain and in the worst case lead to inflammation. Cracks cause the natural protective cover of the body to be attacked and pathogens such as bacteria or fungal spores can penetrate. If the dry and cracked heels show signs of inflammation, then we recommend that you see a doctor and thus get specialized treatment for the infection.

Zwei Füße, die unter der Bettdecke liegen

If there is no inflammation, you can treat the affected area yourself. Since the cornified skin needs a lot of moisture and lipids, we recommend a rich ointment for chapped feet. The optimal time to let this act is during sleep, as our feet are not stressed during the night. Apply a generous amount of cream to the affected areas on your feet before going to bed, then put on a pair of cotton socks if necessary and wear them all night. This will allow the ointment to take full effect. The treatment of chapped feet requires time and patience, often the first successes are visible after 1 to 2 weeks.  After the successful treatment of chapped feet, you should continue to use a special chapping ointment or foot creams containing urea to prevent the formation of new cracks on the heels.

Recommended products for the treatment of cracks on the heels


These topics might also interest you:

Frau im Bademantel cremt sich die Beine ein

Dry skin on the legs – helpful skincare tips

Dryness on the legs, rough knees or scaly shins are not only unpleasant, but also indicate that the skin in these areas lacks moisture and care. But what exactly is the cause of rough and dry skin on the legs and what can you do to restore enough moisture to the dried-out skin? Learn tips and tricks on how to avoid dry skin on your legs.

Frau cremt sich ihren trockenen Ellenbogen ein

Dry ellbows – what helps

In the following article you will learn more about the causes of dry elbows and how you can best prevent them. Causes can include hormones, lifestyle, dry air and clothing material.

Dry skin under the mask

Skin problems due to the mouth-nose protection: dry skin under the mask

Due to the everyday wearing of a protective mask, our facial skin faces great challenges. As a result, irritation, impurities and dry patches can occur on the face, especially in sensitive skin. But even normal skin often shows irritations and skin irritations due to the increased use of a mouthguard, which can eventually lead to dry skin under the mask.

Dry skin in winter vs. desert soil

Top 3 tips against dry skin in winter

You have also noticed that your facial skin is drier than usual in winter? Or do your hands tend to be chapped during the winter months? Fortunately, there is not only a very simple explanation for this, but also three simple tips that you can use to combat dry skin in winter.

Trockene-Haut-im Gesicht

Dry skin on the face

Feeling good in our own skin - that's what we all want. However, when the skin on your face is taut and itchy, it's not that easy. To change this, we reveal the causes of dryness on the face and simple care tips with which you can rebuild the skin's protective barrier.

Guide cracks on the heel

What to do with cracks on the heels?

Struggling with dryness and cracking on your heels? Here you can learn more about the prevention and treatment of chapped or dry feet.