How to soften feet

Updated July 19, 2017

Does the skin on the bottom of your feet feel like sandpaper? It’s an awful feeling, but an easy one to remedy. With a little routine care, you can have soft, smooth feet and you’ll never have to experience that hardened skin or those rough, scratchy heels again.

Use a pumice stone or foot file to scrape the bottoms and heels of your feet just after your shower or bath, when your feet are still damp. Do this carefully, using a light touch. The last thing you want to do is to scrape too hard or too long in any spot and damage your skin.

Wash the loose, dry skin from your feet with warm water and pat them dry.

Massage a heavy moisturising lotion or cream into the top and bottom of your feet while they are still slightly damp (which means your pores are still open). Pay special attention to the problem spots.

Put on a pair of soft, heavy socks before the lotion dries completely. This will keep the moisture from evaporating and will give the lotion time to do its job. Wear the socks for at least a couple of hours. Overnight is best.

Repeat the moisturising steps daily after showering. Repeat the scraping steps two or three times a week until your feet are in good condition. Once they’re in good shape, weekly maintenance will keep them soft and smooth.


People with diabetes should not use a pumice stone or other file on their feet, but should see a podiatrist for help with their calluses.

Things You'll Need

  • Pumice stone or foot file
  • Foot lotion
  • Soft, heavy socks
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About the Author

Susan Steen graduated from the University of New Orleans, where she earned a B.A. in sociology and a certification in social work. She has been a freelance and contract writer for 22 years. Her work has been published in “Evidence Technology Magazine,” “Louisiana Bar Journal,” the Cobblestone children’s educational publications “Faces” and “Appleseeds,” the Waterford Literacy Program, and a variety of websites.