Show your feet some love with one of these 6 DIY foot soak recipes. You’ll find recipes to improve dry skin, cracked heels, yellow toenails, foot fungus and tired, sore feet.
Who doesn’t like a nice homemade foot soak? It’s so relaxing and can help with so many foot issues. But for some reason, I never think about them until spring rolls around.
While a good foot soak can revitalize sore, dry, cracked feet it’s also a relaxing experience that should be enjoyed way more often. Soaking your feet can improve circulation, reduce stress and anxiety, relieve muscle and mental tension, and improve sleep.
I’m going to try my best to add foot soaks to my normal routine for some weekly self-care and I think you should consider doing the same. Then maybe it won’t be such a scramble to make our feet pretty for summer because they’ll look nice year round. Even when they’re shoved in winter boots where no one will notice them. We’ll know.
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Basic Foot Soak Recipe
There are so many ingredients you can use to make a foot soak with. You can get crazy with the ingredients or keep it simple. Let’s look at the basics first.
Epsom Salt – This compound breaks down in water to become magnesium and sulfate. The body needs magnesium to stay healthy. It’s important for bone, muscle, and soft tissues (all found in those tired feet of yours) and most people are actually deficient in magnesium.
While there aren’t a ton of studies on magnesium being pulled into the body through the skin, there are tons of people who believe this is why soaking in epsom salt is so effective. It may be just a folk remedy but many people swear by it.
Sulfates are also a natural mineral salt that are great for cleaning. It binds to oil and dirt and removes them from the surface of the body, in this case, feet. Small doses of sulfates are perfectly safe but if you have sensitive skin you should limit the amount that comes into contact with your skin. A weekly foot soak is perfectly safe.
You might not keep epsom salt at home but it’s fairly inexpensive and can be picked up at tons of stores.
Apple Cider Vinegar – contains acidic acid, which has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties which means it can get rid of unwanted bacteria on your feet. This makes it perfect for wiping out stinky feet, foot fungus, and warts.
Apple cider vinegar is also a chemical exfoliator. It contains AHAs, organic acid with one hydroxyl group attached, which are used as superficial peeling agents. This means it will slough off dead skin and reveal new layers of healthy skin.
Baking Soda – sodium bicarbonate, can be used as a skin softener for dry, calloused feet. Baking soda is a pH neutralizer and since most odors are acidic, the chemicals in baking soda cut those acids down getting rid of the stink.
While the foot soak recipes that follow will combine all kinds of ingredients to eliminate popular foot problems, you can make a simple but effective foot soak by adding one of these above ingredients to some hot water. Or, you can combine them for even better results.
Just because apple cider vinegar and baking soda make a quick and easy foot soak doesn’t mean it’s not a powerful combo for tired, dry feet. Sometimes uncomplicated is the way to go.
Best DIY Foot Soak to Soften Feet
You already read about how apple cider vinegar and baking soda combine to soften feet. Adding a skin softening essential oil like rose or lavender and a regular oil will double the effects. Plus the eo will help with the vinegar smell.
This is the foot bath to use if you need to get rid of some serious dry skin and callouses.
- 1 cup of apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup baking soda
- 2 tbsp cup of coconut or jojoba oil
- 5-10 drops of lavender or rose essential oils
Add the ingredients to a basin full of hot water and soak those feet. I like to soak feet for 10-15 minutes and then use a foot scrub or pumice stone on the softened skin. Then rinse feet in the water.
Towel feet off really well and make sure you step carefully on slippery surfaces. Your feet can be slick from the oil that remains on your feet.
DIY Foot Soak for Cracked Heels
If you have deep cracks in your feet and heels then you needs to be careful with what ingredients you use in a foot soak. You don’t want to irritate any exposed cracks. You do want to soften skin, keep fissures clean, and help speed the healing process and the combo of soap, oil, and chamomile tea will do just that.
- 5-6 bags of chamomile tea
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp of Castile soap
Follow up your foot soak with a heavy conditioning moisturizer like our mango body butter. Rub it into feet and then cover them with thick cotton soaks. This is perfect to do right before bed so your feet can heal while you sleep.
Homemade Foot Soak for Sore Feet and Pain
The green tea in this recipe will help reduce painful swelling and sooth achy feet. Peppermint adds a cooling effect but also increases circulation and is a pain reliever.
- 1/2 cup epsom salt
- 3 bags of green tea
- 4-5 drops of peppermint essential oil (peppermint tea would also work)
Add hot water to a basin big enough for your feet and then pour in all the ingredients. Mix until the salt has dissolved and the green tea has started to seep into the water. Place your feet in and soak for 15-20 minutes.
You can add the ingredients to a cute jar and give it as a gift. You can cut the tea bags and add the leaves to the salt. You can mix it up or do salt, green tea layers.
DIY Foot Soak for Fungus & Athletes Foot
Feet that are suffering from athletes foot can be painfully itchy. Oatmeal will help soothe the skin while tea tree oil kicks fungus to the curb.
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup of oatmeal
- 8 drops of tea tree essential oil
Blend the oatmeal until smooth. You only need 1/2 cup for one soak but you can blend more at once and keep it in an air tight container for future uses. Foot fungus can take many soaks to wipe out so having more on hand makes things easier.
Add the ingredients to your water and soak feet for 15-20 minutes. Towel dry well. The bacteria that cause fungus likes moist skin so don’t put on socks. Leave the skin to breath in the air.
Best Foot Soak for Stinky Feet
Stinky feet are caused by bacteria so you need to get rid of it. Apple cider vinegar and baking soda are good for both but they do fizz up when you mix them together so go slow. Start by dissolving the baking soda into warm water first and then slowly add in the vinegar.
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 1 tbsp Castile Soap
- 4-5 drops of peppermint essential oil
Use just like all the other foots soak recipes. Also, consider sprinkling some baking soda into shoes to help absorb moisture and smells. Make sure you swap shoes out. Don’t wear the same pair two days in a row. They need air to circulate through them.
How to Remove Dead Skin from Feet
The best way to get your feet looking their best is to get rid of all that dead skin. Soaking your feet is only the first step. This will soften the skin on your feet but after that you’ll need to scrub your feet to slough often the dead stuff.
If your feet are pretty rough then you should use a natural pumice stone because it will do a much better job at removing the dead skin. If you’ve been taking care of your feet then a foot scrub will do a great job for regular upkeep.
Soak your feet for 15 – 20 minutes and then scrub them with your foot scrub or pumice stone and then dip them back in the water to rinse them off. Finish up with a heavy moisturizer like a body butter or an oil like coconut oil.
Just be careful with your steps after that because your feet will be slick. You can put some cotton socks on to hold in that moisturizer.
Doing a foot soak before bed can help you relax and therefore sleep better. But it also helps to moisturize your feet and then go to bed. It will give your feet time to absorb all the moisture.
Your feet will be soft in no time!
Take Your Foot Soak Up A Notch
Want to really relax while you soak those toes? Try one or two of these tips:
- Find a comfy place to sit for your foot soak. 20 minutes will go by fast if you’re comfy but really slow if you’re not so find a nice place to sit back and relax.
- Play some soothing music, grab a book, or watch a fun 20 minute show as you soak.
- Turn your soak into a spa experience by adding marbles or smooth stones to your tub of water. Then gently roll your feet over them for a nice massage.
- Grab a healthy snack or refreshing drink to keep by your side. I like to make flavored water to really pamper myself.
- Make sure you have everything you need before you dip your feet into the water. Once you’re in, you aren’t going to want to take your wet feet out until your time is up.
- Lay a towel out on the floor and place your tub of water on top of it. This will keep you from worrying about small spills and will be ready for your feet when you’re finished.
- Carve out a set day and time to soak your feet so you have no excuse not to enjoy one every week. Remind yourself that you work hard all week and deserve this time.
Precautions to Take Before a Foot Soak
While these DIY foot soaks are relatively safe it’s always best to use caution when trying something out for the first time.
- It’s always best to do a patch test on skin when using an ingredient you’ve never used before.
- Test the water temperature before placing your feet in first.
- Never put essential oils directly on skin. When using essential oils for a foot soak, drop them directly into the water.
- Be cautious of deep cracks or cuts when using a foot soak and consider talking with a doctor first. Use a mild recipe or just water until feet have started to heal. Some of the ingredients in these foot soak recipes can cause burning or irritation on cuts.
Homemade Foot Soak Recipes
A natural foot soak is so easy to throw together and can be so relaxing. You should definitely add it to your weekly routine to really enjoy the benefits.
Try one of these 6 DIY foot soak recipes or try them all. See which one you like best. Personally, I like to mix things up. Some days I use the foot soak for sore feet and other times I goes for the extra moisturizing foot spa.
No matter which DIY foot soak recipe you try first, you won’t be disappointed. Let us know which foot soak you tried in the comments below.