Last updated on May 5, 2022 – Published on April 29, 2020
Diabetic foot creams do not exist! It’s nothing more than a marketing name. Like one cream could cure all diabetes foot problems at once?
You don’t need the same foot cream whether you suffer from diabetic foot pain caused by peripheral neuropathy, have cracked heels, fungus, diabetic foot ulcer, or swollen feet.
That being said, keeping your feet moisturized is essential when you have diabetes. High blood sugar levels can dry out the skin. When dry skin starts to peel or crack, it’s prone to infections which increases the risks of diabetic foot ulcers and amputations.
Regularly massaging your feet with a good foot moisturizer is part of a healthy diabetic foot care routine.
Diabetes is dangerous for the feet. Don’t forget to get your yearly diabetic foot exam, and always ask for your doctor’s advice before applying any cream or lotion on your feet.
Diabetes is a condition that can seriously affect the feet. Because of high blood sugar levels that cause dehydration, diabetics often have dry skin. Dry skin often cracks and peels. It’s itchy, irritated, and more prone to wounds and infections.
On top of that, more than 50% of people with diabetes have some form of peripheral neuropathy. This type of nerve damage primarily affects the feet and the lower limbs. It’s also often associated with poor blood circulation which considerably slows down the healing process.
If you have neuropathy, you may not be able to sense foot calluses, wounds, and infections. Ultimately, diabetics’ dry feet can quickly escalate to serious foot infections leading to foot ulcers, gangrene, and amputations in the worst cases.
That’s why diabetics need to use foot creams and lotions when they have dry skin.
Feet affected by diabetes and neuropathy are very fragile. Poor quality moisturizers and foot care products can be harmful. They often contain chemicals that are too aggressive for your skin.
The ingredients used in diabetic foot creams should be non-irritative. To prevent irritations and allergic reactions, diabetic foot creams are often fragrance-free, paraben-free, and hypoallergenic.
Diabetic foot creams are made to moisturize and soothe dry skin. Look for natural soothers and deep moisturizers such as aloe vera, urea, shea butter, oils, etc. It should also be fast-absorbing and not too greasy so as not to favor fungus and bacteria growth.
Foot creams for diabetics are also formulated to provide relief from mild neuropathy symptoms such as itching or burning sensation. They may provide relief from mild diabetic peripheral neuropathy symptoms and pain. However, if you suffer from severe nerve pain in the feet, you should look at pain creams for neuropathy.
In most cases, a good foot moisturizer is enough to keep diabetic feet healthy. However, if your feet are affected by a specific problem such as neuropathy pain, swelling, cracked skin, blisters, ulcers, or others, you should look for foot creams specially formulated to target that problem (see the list below).
Here’s a top 10 pick of the best foot creams for diabetics based on the most common diabetes-related foot problems.
Gold Bond Ultimate Diabetic Skin Relief Foot Cream is the best seller. The intensive formula provides long-lasting moisturizing effects. It’s non-greasy and absorbs very quickly. Besides, it contains Aloe Vera extract to soothe skin irritations, discomforts, and itchiness.
It’s a great diabetic foot cream to use within a daily foot care routine if you don’t suffer from any specific foot problem. Gold Bond proudly advertises that “9 out of 10 people with diabetes saw skin improvement within an hour” after using its diabetic foot cream. Definitely worth the try!
CeraVe brand is from the L’Oréal Group and is now the #1 skincare company recommended by dermatologists in the USA. The company has formulated an excellent lotion for diabetics that guarantees 48-hours moisturization.
Packed with anti-oxidants, urea, and essential ceramides, this deep foot and hand moisturizer is great for dry, very dry, and cracked skin. It’s non-greasy, fast-absorbing, and very soothing. It’s fragrance-free, paraben-free, and non-irritating for sensitive skin.
Zatural CBD Hot Cream is the most potent and effective topical cream for diabetic foot pain caused by peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage). Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the newest and strongest natural pain-relievers and it works great on neuropathy pain.
This pain cream is infused with 2000mg of high-quality organic broad-spectrum CBD to immediately neutralize the pain. It contains more than 20 plant extracts and essential oils for neuropathy including Helichrysum flower oil (helps regenerate damaged nerves), Basil (nerve tonic), as well as Peppermint (boosts blood circulation), Camomile, Aloe Vera (soothes), and Menthol Crystals (cooling effect).
More choices: The 10 Best Pain Creams for Neuropathy in the Feet
Warning! Peripheral neuropathy is a common yet serious diabetes complication that can lead to severe foot complications. Always ask for your doctor’s advice before applying any creams or foot care products on your feet.
Eucerin Advanced Repair foot cream is one of the most popular and doctor-recommended foot creams for diabetics. Its formula is highly efficient yet very gentle and suitable for sensitive skins.
It’s made to repair very dry and rough skins on the feet while shooting small in comforts. It’s fast-absorbing and does not leave a greasy feel which helps prevent fungus and bacteria growth.
Last but not least, it’s fairly priced and one tube goes a long way!
Made with premium-quality ingredients, PurOrganica Urea 40% Foot Cream is one of the most potent foot moisturizers for severely dry skin, cracked heels, rough skin, or calluses.
Also known as carbamide, Urea is a strong humectant that dissolves the intercellular matrix of the cells, promoting desquamation and softening of the skin. This cream contains 40% urea and it’s remarkably efficient. It deeply rehydrates, nourishes, and softens the skin to get rid of and prevent any painful calluses.
It also contains Chamomille, Tea Tree, and Aloe Vera extracts, which add natural antibacterial, calming, and relaxing effects for diabetics’ irritated and itchy skins.
Due to high levels of blood sugars and damaged nerves, diabetics tend to have poorer blood circulation as well as a slower healing process leading to foot infections and ulcers.
Neoteric’s new patented formula helps speed the healing process up and improves blood circulation in the feet. Plus, it’s a strong moisturizer that can help restore dry and cracked skin. The aloe vera it contains also helps soothe irritated and itchy skin. A complete diabetic foot cream combo!
Skin problems are very common among diabetics. Long-term and repetitive high blood sugar levels can cause dehydration, while poor blood flow can lead to changes in the skin’s collagen. Ultimately, people living with unbalanced diabetes often suffer from severely dry skin, skin rashes, itchiness, and discomforts.
CBD Medic Medicated Ointment for Itch & Rash is a highly effective product. Its formula cleverly combines science with nature. On the science side, we find Allantoin and Lidocaine as active ingredients. Allantoin is a skin emollient that keeps your skin moisturized and helps prevent dryness and irritation. Lidocaine is a local anesthetic that causes numbness to relieve pain and itching caused by skin conditions.
On the nature side, we find 1% colloidal oatmeal, used to treat most skin complications from irritated skin to eczema and xerosis. There’s also a good blend of soothing and calming essential oils (Palmarosa), as well as Jojoba and Cottonseed oils.
Last but not least, this ointment is infused with premium-quality CBD isolate, the purest form of Cannabidiol guaranteed without any traces of THC. Recent research on CBD has shown incredible benefits for skin conditions like itchiness, rashes, and even eczema. This is a must-try product!
Ease-Z Diabetic Foot Cream for Dry and Itchy Feet has been formulated to target the most common diabetes-related foot problems.
While it’s a good moisturizer and contains a large amount of shea butter, it also helps soothe itchiness, burning sensations, and skin discomforts.
This foot lotion contains Zinc. Zinc provides an added layer of protection for the skin and promotes the healing of sores and wounds.
Best Foot Cream for Minor Diabetic Foot Ulcers
Terrasil Diabetic’s ulcers and sores healing ointment has been formulated with one of the most serious diabetes complications in mind. Foot ulcers affect around 15% of people living with diabetes and can lead to partial amputation if not properly taken care of.
This over-the-counter diabetic healing ointment is a great product containing activated minerals that help speed the healing process up. According to the company, it “helps minimise scarring with noticeable improvement for most diabetic ulcers in 2 days“.
Warning: Diabetic foot ulcers are very serious and require medical attention. If you have a diabetic foot ulcer, you must seek your doctor’s advice before applying any lotion or healing ointment.
Each foot cream comes with its own instructions for use. As a common rule though, diabetic foot cream should always be applied on clean and dry feet.
Remember that when living with diabetes, it is important to gently wash your feet daily and to carefully dry them, especially between the toes. A wet or moist environment favors fungus and bacteria growth.
Once your feet are clean and dry, apply your cream or lotion and gently massage your feet insisting on the dry or painful areas.
Avoid putting cream between the toes: it’s better to keep that area not too moist to avoid fungal infections. Putting foot cream in between your toes can cause bacterial and fungus infections. The skin of your feet must be moisturized, while the part in-between your toes must be kept dry.
Most diabetic foot creams are sold over the counter and involve very little risk. They’re made with safe ingredients that have few and mild side effects.
The most common side effect caused by diabetic foot creams, or any creams, is an allergic reaction to one of the components. If you notice any redness, itchiness, swelling, or discomfort after applying a foot cream, immediately wash your feet to rinse it off. If it does not go away, ask for your doctor’s advice.
Feet affected by diabetes and diabetic neuropathy are very fragile. Never apply a cream or a lotion on your feet without your doctor’s advice.