Here is the 2020 update to the Listerine vinegar foot soak for soft smooth feet post with expert advice by dermatologist Dr. Jo Lynn Herzog.
Does the Listerine vinegar foot soak recipe REALLY remove bacteria, heal Athlete’s foot, soften feet, and remove dry, dead skin?
What exactly IS the Listerine Vinegar Foot Soak?
Several years ago, the official “Listerine Vinegar Foot Soak For Soft Smooth Feet” was a viral post on Facebook. Here is exactly how the wording appeared:
Ideal to help with those crusty feet! Get it right ladies!! …the BEST way to get your feet ready for summer. Sounds crazy but it works! Mix 1/4c Listerine, 1/4c vinegar and 1/2c of warm water. Soak feet for 10 minutes–the dead skin will practically wipe off!
This “recipe” was forwarded and reposted literally millions of times! From Facebook to Pinterest to Instagram and more! The viral nature of the post left questions in the minds of many, including myself. First, my long-time friend and dermatologist, Dr. Jo Herzog, will share her thoughts on the foot soak. Next, I will share my personal experience.
Dr. Jo’s opinion of the Listerine Vinegar Foot Soak
I have been asked to comment on a widely circulating Facebook post about an amazing foot soak comprised of a mixture of Listerine, vinegar, and water. The claim is that this soak causes the dead skin to “peel off.” So, is this truth or hype?
First, I’ll address the question, “Does a Listerine and vinegar foot soak remove dry, dead skin?” If you have dry feet, this soak certainly couldn’t hurt, and it might even help. Your feet will surely be clean and tingly when you are done, especially if you use cool mint Listerine. The most you can lose is ten minutes and a few cents.
I am also asked by many patients, “Does Listerine kill foot fungus?” The answer is a clear yes. Listerine contains Thymol, an ingredient that does kill some bacteria and fungi. Although the concentration is lower in this than in some prescription products, it probably does “kill germs.”
Patients also ask, “What happens when you soak your feet in vinegar?” Vinegar is acetic acid, and in a high enough concentration, it can cause irritation. Acetic acid contributes to cavity formation by eroding enamel from teeth. This might lead some to think that in low concentrations it can work to soften the skin and make it easier to exfoliate. In addition to acidic properties, vinegar can act as an antibacterial agent.
There have been several things written supporting the notion that vinegar and water soaks can be used to soften dry, cracked heels. Some even recommend this for mild athlete’s foot. As I said earlier, it is worth a try if you have the time and the ingredients readily on hand.
There certainly is nothing wrong with or worrisome about soaking your feet in something safe enough to put in your mouth, so why not try this and see for yourself? If nothing else, the soak could help with smelly feet, which I write about in this post.
Hope this helped,
My Experience with the Foot Soak
Now that we’ve heard from Dr. Jo, I would like to share my own experience with the foot soak. I tried this firsthand so that I could show you how well this works. So, here are some of my tips and opinions on how effective the Listerine Vinegar Foot Soak truly is.
What is the official “recipe” for Listerine Vinegar Foot Soak?
The original recipe calls for 1/2 cup each of vinegar and Listerine with 1 cup of water. However, I discovered a different “recipe” that worked better for me. These are my personal tweaks, based on experimentation and learning from others who’ve shared great ideas. My proportions are as follows:
Family Savvy Recipe for Listerine Vinegar Foot Soak
1 cup of Listerine
1 cup of vinegar
Warm water to cover the top of feet
How Long Do You Soak Your Feet in Listerine and Vinegar?
Dr. Jo recommends a minimum of 20 minutes for this or any foot soak. In the video below, I share her step by step “prescription” for how to use a foot soak as part of a sure-fire routine to get (and keep) soft feet.
Dr. Jo’s prescription for the best foot soak method.
I recently bought this Ebanel 40 % Urea cream + 2% salicylic acid that received high ratings on amazon. I texted Dr. Jo and asked her if it would be beneficial for feet. She responded yes IF used the best way for optimal results. In the video below, I share her easy method to get the softest feet possible.
Will Listerine Color My Feet or Toes Blue/Green?
Some have encountered the problem of having their feet and/or toes turn blue or green when soaking in the Listerine vinegar solution. If this happens, Dr. Jo reports that it will go away (typically within a day or two).
Disclaimer: If you have diabetes or foot conditions that require medical supervision, always consult with a doctor before self-treatment.
My Other Favorite Products for Soft, Smooth Feet
- For removing dry, dead skin, one of the best products I’ve tried is Baby Foot. It is basically a chemical peel for feet, and it really does make dry dead skin “peel right off.” Dr. Jo also recommends Baby Foot and advises against the cheaper copycat versions.
- My DIY recipe for Listerine vinegar sugar scrub for feet is a powerful combo of Listerine + vinegar in an exfoliating scrub. I love it!!!
- For stubborn callouses, an electronic foot file that removes callouses can be hugely helpful. This one is top-rated by amazon and receives high reviews from users.
Is Cracked Heels a vitamin deficiency?
While cracked heels is not really a cause of concern, deficiencies in Vitamin C, B-3, and E may cause dry and cracked heels. Eczema, athlete’s food, and other similar conditions may also cause cracked heels.
What happens if you never wash your feet?
According to experts, when you don’t wash your feet, you are at risk of having a more oily and dry skin. Bacteria and fungi or yeast may also accumulate causing infections, which can also cause warts.
What is dry feet a sign of?
Thyroid conditions may be spotted if the skin around the ball or heel of your foot is flaky, cracked, and dry. Certain hormones that are responsible for controlling nervous system functions, blood pressure, metabolic rate, and tissue growth are produced by your thyroid glands. One of the signs that you may have a thyroid problem is dry skin.
Consider a foot cleaning device.
Keeping feet clean is something we do daily, so why not make the most of the routine? I recently purchased a device that has 6 different heads and a long handle attachment. I share how I use it in the short video below and also link to similar items.
If you want even more ways to use this powerful mouth rise, check out my post: 9 Savvy Ways to Use Listerine Besides Mouthwash. There are so many ways to use it besides oral care!
There you have it~my tried and true products and techniques for achieving and maintaining soft feet. I’d love to hear back from you if you try any of these products, so please feel free to leave comments! As always, thanks so much for stopping by. Be blessed, and stay soft-feet savvy.