From preventing and getting rid of calluses to curing dry, stinky feet, here's what every guy needs to stock up on.
Adam Hurly 1 / 8
Your feet spend most of the day tucked away, susceptible to all sorts of scaries caused by darkness, poor ventilation, and moisture.And, since you spend so much time on your feet, it’s crucial that you prevent problems like fungal infections, ingrown toenails, and blisters, or treat them as soon as they arise. However, you can stay proactive with a few simple products; here are those essentials.10 Ways to Cure Your Stinky Feet >>>
Callus-removal creams and cushions are readily available from most pharmacies, and they will handle any smaller, more painful patches of thick skin. However, for bigger, ongoing rough spots (at the heel, for example), a handheld mechanical device like the Amopé Pedi Perfect™Electronic Foot File will buff away dead skin to restore softness. Use it once or twice a week to stay ahead of any strain.
If your heels are so dry that they crack, don’t buff away any skin; you need to nourish the foot instead of grating it. Those cracks in the skin leave you vulnerable to infection. “[In this case], find a moisturizer with 12% ammonium lactate,” says dermatologist Janet Prystowsky, MD, PC. Pearigo has an effective one; apply it before bed as necessary. “It will exfoliate [dead skin] while softening the cracked heels.” This cream also stops any itchiness associated with the dry skin.
Add this to your morning regimen; rub some foot moisturizer on your feet right before tucking them away for the day—again, save the medicated stuff for bedtime. Mayron’s Good’s Feet Cream dries quickly so that you aren’t carrying added moisture all day. The soothing ingredients—cucumber, essential oils, avocado, Vitamin E, chamomile, and calendula—will keep your feet smelling fresh and looking fine.
“Athlete’s Foot thrives in dark, moist places like a post-workout sneaker,” Prystowsky says. She recommends UV light sanitizers (like these ones from UV Pro) to kill any fungus that takes residence in your shoes. They produce Ozone that kills 99.99% of germs, mold, and bacteria in just ten minutes.
You can further prevent moisture (and odor!) by sprinkling the inside of your socks and shoes with a powder. Chassis’ Premium Powder has properties of aloe, witch hazel, and oatmeal that will nourish the skin and prevent it from drying out and cracking. (Some poorly engineered powders will starve the skin of its natural moisture.)
If you trim your toenails with the fingernail clipper—or, if you trim them too low—you’re inviting very painful ingrown toenails. Toenail clippers are the larger, straight-top device (as opposed to the smaller, curved fingernail clippers); Tweezerman is your go-to for both kinds.
“Avoid the doctor’s visit by making sure your nail tips extend past your skin,” says Prystowsky. Trim toenails at least once a month, if not more frequently.
Running sneakers, work boots, and dress shoes are the biggest abusers; they cut the heel or leave blisters in their wake. Pad these shoes with sport and work inserts from Dr. Scholl’s. You can cut the inserts to match your existing insoles, so that they fit perfectly inside the shoes.
If you’re already enduring a nasty blister, then see a podiatrist to have it drained.
“I don’t recommend popping your own blisters,” says Prystowsky. “You’re likely to give yourself an infection, or at the very least more discomfort than it’s worth. [However] the worst you can do for a blister is to peel off the layer of dead skin on top. It’s the only thing protecting your foot from infection and the immense pain of stepping on raw skin.”