After a winter spent in socks & boots, here’s our guide to the best foot-repairing creams for hard, dry skin & cracked heels to get feet fit for the summer

Our feet go through a lot and yet, when it comes to purchasing skincare, feet will often come, quite literally, at the bottom of our priorities. But when the average person should aim to spend two to four hours per working day standing on them*, isn’t it time you showed your hard-working body parts some love as part of your self-care routine?

A not insignificant 29%** of working-age adults experience abnormally dry skin on their feet. So why do our feet need extra care? ‘The skin on our feet is much thicker and harder than elsewhere on our body, due to facing more external factors than other parts,’ explains Dylan Griffiths, Eucerin’s medical manager. ‘Daily pressure from carrying our bodies around, as well as from footwear and other factors, means the skin on our feet can easily become thick and dry, and can even crack if not properly cared for.’

In other words: skincare designed for other parts of the body just won’t cut it for feet. ‘Body creams usually aren’t rich enough to penetrate the tougher layers of skin found on our feet. This is where dedicated foot care comes in – they should contain a higher concentration of ingredients designed to penetrate these thicker layers,’ says Dylan.

Walking barefoot and exposing feet to dust and hard floors can also cause heel cracking, as well as chemicals in your detergent and bad posture.

Vitamins C, B-3 and E deficiencies may also manifest as dry, cracked heels – if you’re concerned, speak to your GP.

Confused about vitamins? Here are our guides to vitamin C and vitamin E supplements and why you might need them.

So, whether it’s dry patches and cracked heels bothering you or your feet simply need some pre-sandal TLC, here’s our guide to getting beautiful tootsies just in time for (hopefully) warmer weather.

Our pick of the best foot creams at Boots
Best foot cream for dry skin

Try: Eucerin Dry Skin UreaRepair Plus 10% Urea Foot Cream, £11

• 100ml

• Quick absorbing

• Non greasy

• Fragrance-free

‘Urea and ceramides are natural moisturising factors, which make a foot cream seriously hydrating,’ explains Dylan. Both hard-working ingredients can be found in this fast-acting pick. ‘Not only does urea readily absorb water, it has a very high water content, which helps reduce the amount of water lost through the skin as we age,’ adds Dylan. Ceramides then help lock this added moisture in by strengthening the protective skin barrier. 

‘Apply when feet are slightly damp after bathing to lock in as much hydration as possible,’ advises Dylan.

Best foot cream for cracked heels

Try: Boots Pharmaceuticals Cracked Heel Balm, £8.49

• Size: 125ml

‘When urea is applied to the skin it penetrates the stratum corneum, where it readily absorbs and helps skin cells retain water, thus increasing the capacity of the skin to hold moisture and rehydrate,’ explains Dylan.

This potent cream contains 25% urea to help relieve dry skin, leaving feet feeling soft and smooth, while cracked heels look and feel better within days.

Best foot cream for hard skin

Try: Boots Dry & Cracked Foot Softener, £5.99

• 150ml

• Recyclable packaging

This moisturising cream contains AHAs to help soften and condition dry skin and cracked heels, helping to prevent cracked skin in the future. 

‘A small amount is enough for regular treatment, but a more generous amount, such as the size of a 50p coin, can be used for a more intensive treatment,’ advises Dylan.

Best cream for foot blisters

Try: Compeed Anti-Blister Stick, £3.49

• 8ml

Blisters are usually caused by a combination of friction and pressure – especially when feet swell in warmer temperatures.

This invisible lubricating formula instantly reduces rubbing on skin, with 90% of users*** surveyed reporting it prevented blisters and chafing on feet.

Best foot cream for aching feet

Try: Soap & Glory Heel Genius Foot Cream, £5.21

• Size: 125ml

• Dermatologically tested

‘Containing menthol, which can help cool and soothe hot, tired feet, this cream’s formulation also includes AHAs to help smooth and soften skin hardened by hours on your feet.

Make your foot cream work harder by wearing socks over a treatment to ‘reduce moisture loss even further – particularly effective if worn overnight,’ suggests Dylan.

Best foot cream for calluses and corns

Try: Boots Hard Skin Reducing Cream, £5.89

• 50ml

Designed to help reduce hard skin on the feet, this cream leaves them feeling soft and smooth in days thanks to the 18% dose of urea in its formula.

Top tip? Use a pumice stone on dry feet beforehand to gently slough away hard skin. And for those who have sensitive skin, don’t worry; ‘our feet are hardy and can handle physical exfoliation in a way that the skin on our face may not be able to,’ says Dylan.

For more amazing foot creams, check out our full range…

Cautious about getting your feet out this summer? Here’s our guide to getting feet summer-ready.


Calluses & hard skin

Information & advice


Information & advice

All prices correct on date of publication.



*** Product use test conducted among 200 consumers (France & Australia 2004)