Cracked Heels

Celebrity Q and A'sI have a client with very hard skin on her heels which cracks and gets deep fissures. I have her soaking them and using the foot file on them ( I tell her every day, who knows if she does this) and I have her applying foot cream....any other advice? 
Deb 11/30/99

Wear enclosed heel shoes. Bag Balm I find to be the best thing for these problems. If none of this works it may be a fungal infection causing this. Lamicil fungal cream is now over the counter and should be tried for about a month. If no results from any of this then the client needs a referral to the podiatrist for evaluation.

Dr. Oscar Mix


Celebrity Q and A'sThis is a problem that can make a true heroine out of you! Your recommendation is correct, but there is more that you can do for her. First, you need to determine if the fissures are deep enough to be open. If they are, recommend a good lotion with hyaluronic acid in it to be used before and after her home care sloughing with a file. 

After the fissures are healed at the base, you can have her in for glycolic treatments/pedicures in a 'program.' The pedicure is done first - a routine pedicure with the glycolic treatment done immediately after the soak, then the routine pedicure performed. THE GLYCOLIC IS APPLIED ONLY TO THE CALLUSES. The next week she comes in for just a glycolic treatment - she soaks for a few minutes (5, not 10-15), then the glycolic treatment and exfoliation is performed (half hour appt., no polish change or cuticle treatment etc), she is rehydrated with a good hydrating foot balm then released (this is the only resemblance to a massage - a deep massage is never done after treatment strength glycolic). 

This treatment is done weekly until her next pedicure is due, then the glycolic pedicure is performed again. (above). If there is any evidence of calluses and fissures still apparent, one or two treatments are performed the next week. I have never had any one need more than two pedicures and four treatments, however, unless they have 'shelf' calluses - the ones that are around the lower sides and bottom of the feet, like wearing shoes! I never go beyond 8 appointments.

Home care is important or the calluses will not respond as well to the salon care. I recommend a good lotion to be applied after every daily shower, then application of a high glycolic hand and body care or pedicure lotion (10-12%) on the calluses. She should use the wand a couple times a week after application of the lotions. 

It is important that that you instruct them that that % is used only one-two times a day SPARINGLY. They can get a chaffed if they do more as they usually are messy over only the regular skin some, also.

I suggest you recommend the program to these people, then get them on the program for two weeks prior to starting the pedicures and treatments - it is like a 'patch test' in that you will know if there are any sensitivities prior to doing the glycolic treatments.

I recommend never using under/over 30% glycolic for treatment pedicures - much lower if I use one to enhance my exfoliation in regular pedicures. 
READ THE PRECAUTIONS CAREFULLY.
USE IT AS DIRECTED. 
NEVER LEAVE THE CLIENT DURING THE "SET" TIME. 
ALWAYS NEUTRALIZE. 
REMOVE IMMEDIATELY IF SHE COMPLAINS OF STINGING (beyond prickling).
ALWAYS REHYDRATE/MOISTURIZE FOLLOWING THE USE OF GLYCOLIC.
WEAR GLOVES IF YOU ARE DOING MORE THAN ONE PER DAY.

This is safe treatment skin care for professional, responsible pedicurists, not those 'let's try it this way' technicians who take unneeded chances. It works, and the clients LOVE you when they see their new 'baby's butt' soft and healthy feet after you finish the program. Maintenance is a once a month glyc pedicure, with the 12% lotion being used a couple times a week with the pedicure wand.
Janet McCormick
Salon Techniques
Author, Spa Manicuring for Salons and Spas, Milady Publishing


Celebrity Q and A's Tell your client to "check her shoes". Often times, really bad calluses like this are caused by improperly fitted shoes. A callous is the bodies way of responding to repeated injury. Many people are walking around with foot problems that could easily be solved by wearing properly fitted shoes. Also, remember "smooth don't remove". Leave some of the callous. It protects the foot from repeated injury. If you remove them, you remove the protection. Just smooth those calluses down, but don't eliminate them.
Doug Schoon
Director of R&D
Creative Nail Design


Celebrity Q and A'sI'm a chemist, not a podiatrist, but in my personal experience as a runner, I have found that fungal infections of the foot can be responsible for hardness and cracking of the skin of the heel. Not fun to run on!!! See a licensed podiatrist for treatment. 
Paul Bryson
CoDirector of R&D, O.P.I. 


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