When shopping for skincare, looking for the best foot cream may not even register on your radar.
In winter, your feet spend most of the time deprived of fresh air and moisture, while in the summer months they can get too much exposure. While the words ‘foot cream’ don’t exactly scream glamour, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t show your pieds some TLC. Plus, the longer cracked heels and dry skin are left untreated, the higher the chances of the skin splitting and becoming painful to walk on.
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The skin on your feet is thicker and naturally drier than on other areas of the body. As a result, you’ve probably noticed that dedicated foot creams are made with heavier, richer textures than face or body lotions, and they often boast exfoliating properties that tackle tough, dry patches.
This is why you could moisturise your feet with standard body lotion for weeks and barely see an improvement. We do understand, though, that spending money on yet another skincare or makeup product may not be possible for everyone. With this in mind, every entry in our best foot cream list, even our Luxury Buy, comes in at under a tenner.
To improve the effectiveness of whichever one you buy, we recommend applying after a shower when your skin is soft. We also suggest you invest in a foot buffer or check out our overnight beauty guide on the foot treatments that work as you sleep. We’re also big fans of moisturising socks (like these from Avon) that work with any cream.
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£4.99 | Buy now
Why we love it: Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula is an absolute winner for us and at £4.99 it’s totally budget-friendly.
This creamy product is enriched with Vitamin E and other natural emollients and completely lives up to its name ‘foot magic’.
Its extremely softening and hydrating for even the roughest, driest skin and has the addition of soothing peppermint oil to revitalise sore, tired feet. It’s also vegan.
We love it and we think you will too.
£2.99 | Buy now
Why we love it: Chances are most of us have this little pot of wonder in our bathroom cabinets or dressing tables at home.
Pure petroleum jelly is very gentle on the skin, making it a perfect choice to soothe dry and cracked feet.
Vaseline can take a while to soak in, so try coating your feet before bed, slipping on a pair of socks (ideally cotton), and letting it soak in overnight while you’re asleep. This will help maximise its softening effect.
Alternatively, Vaseline can be used to block the moisturising properties of other products from escaping your skin. In this way, put on your normal foot cream or similar. Apply a layer of Vaseline over the top and leave both to work their magic.
In fact, the beauty, excuse the pun, of Vaseline is that it has many other uses in your makeup and skincare routine so it’s a good all-rounder.
£10 | Buy now
Why we love it? The Lush Volcano Foot Mask is a little different from traditional creams and lotions.
The cooling, invigorating mask contains powerful deodorising ingredients to help smooth and draw out deep-down dirt.
To use, smear the clay onto your soles and heels, cover with a plastic bag/wrap (it can get a little messy), sit back, and relax for 10 minutes before rinsing to reveal super soft skin.
It’s more effort than others on this list but is worth it.
If you want something a little cheaper, and easier to manage, we also recommend Avon’s Footworks which does a similar job while you sleep for slightly less money.
£7.99 | Buy now
Why we love it: If you suffer from hard skin, this Swedish formula in the CCS Foot Care Cream is exceptionally thick and moistening.
It will leave your feet feeling completely smooth and hydrated within a few days.
This is because it contains urea, which is the natural moisturiser found in the human body. Urea helps break down hard skin, as well as prevent it from returning.
We love its minty scent, too.
£4.80 | Buy now
Why we love it: This is a specialised Athlete’s foot cream, designed to get rid of the fungus that causes the skin to flake and itch between your toes.
That said, Athletes’ Foot is one of the most common fungal infections of the skin and is contagious so it can’t do any harm to use this even if you’re not currently suffering.
The main differences between Athletes’ foot and just dry skin are that the affected skin is red with a scaly coating.
This coating cracks and peels, and is typically itchy and sore.
Scholl’s treatment works thanks to a specially formulated antifungal medication called Terbinafine.
This is not a one-treatment solution, however. You need to use it twice a day for at least a week to notice a significant reduction in symptoms.
£12.99 | Buy now
Why we love it: The main ingredient in Burt’s Bees’ foot cream is coconut oil, which is known to protect against microbial infections, as well as being a powerful antioxidant.
Alongside coconut oil it also contains rosemary and peppermint extracts, which help to smooth your skin leaving instant softness.
The formula is thick and can therefore feel sticky on application, so you must be patient whilst it works its magic – and believe us when we say, it’s extremely nourishing.
It also has a lovely minty coconut smell, too which is an added bonus.
£9.99 | Buy now
Why we love it: If you’re a beauty buff, you may have seen exfoliating socks gaining attention over recent years. In a nutshell, they consist of plastic socks full of a special chemical solution that helps break down dead skin over time, leaving your feet smooth and baby soft within ten days. You can read more about this in our How to get rid of dry skin on feet guide.
To use, soak feet in water beforehand, and pop the socks on for 60 minutes before rinsing it off. After five to seven days the peeling process will begin and the dead skin will begin to flake off.
By day ten, the peeling will have stopped completely, leaving you with incredibly soft skin where even the toughest, driest patches once remained. If you’re grossed out very easily, then maybe give this one a miss, but we’re completely obsessed with them.
We should also note that this isn’t a catch-all solution. If you have particularly cracked heels or dry patches, these socks will help but won’t get rid of it completely. We recommend you combine these every couple of months with a regular foot treatment done daily (or at least weekly).
Annie has a degree in Multimedia Journalism from Bournemouth University. Since graduating, Annie has freelanced for a travel magazine and is a senior account executive for a technology PR consultancy based in London, where her main role is content creation.