Foot fungus is an embarrassing topic of conversation. Failure to address superficial infections that affect the outer layers of the skin can worsen and lead to more serious conditions. A fungal infection of the foot is commonly athlete’s foot or foot ringworm. The skin can develop fungal infections, but so can the toenails, and that is known as onychomycosis.
Depending on the severity of the infection, medications or antibiotics may or may not be necessary. More often than not, athlete’s foot can be remedied by way of regularly applying an anti-fungal steroid cream. Creams like this can be harmful to the rest of the body, though, as the skin absorbs the other chemicals and ingredients in them. What about harnessing the power of natural ingredients to remedy the issue? The following ingredients, which are in the foot soak recipe in this article, offer powerful anti-fungal properties.
Not only is baking soda is an excellent ingredient to help neutralize foot odors, but it also helps to battle fungal infections. It dries excess moisture between toes, and fungus thrives in moist environments. Baking soda helps to exfoliate the skin’s surface, which destroys the fungal layer underneath. Additionally, the natural alkaline nature of baking soda helps to neutralize the acidic environment of a fungal infection.
Tea Tree Oil
Some scientific studies confirmed that tea tree oil is capable of destroying nail fungus. A 2013 study found that tea tree oil inhibited the growth of Trichophyton rubrum, a fungus that causes nail infections. This same fungus often causes athlete’s foot. The antiseptic and anti-fungal properties in tea tree oil help to reduce the risk of recurring fungal infections. If you regularly experience athlete’s foot or nail infections, regular application may be necessary.
People typically soak in Epsom salt baths to help reduce muscle aches and pains. The belief is that the body efficiently absorbs the magnesium, which may treat a variety of problems. According to several studies, Epsom salt does not kill the fungus that causes athlete’s foot, but it does help draw out excess moisture like baking soda. The crystals in Epsom salt also aid with the removal of dead skin cells, leaving the feet more supple and nourished post soak.
Peppermint Essential Oil
A recent laboratory study found that several essential oils, including peppermint essential oil, were effective against 22 bacterial strains. Out of 12 fungi, peppermint essential oil completely inhibited 11 of them. This is because peppermint essential oil exhibits antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antiseptic activity. Additionally, experts believe that the menthol in peppermint essential oil helps soothe inflamed skin.
DIY Anti-Fungal Foot Soak
- 1 cup Epsom salt
- 1/2 cup baking soda
- 30 drops tea tree oil
- 10 drops peppermint essential oil
- 2 tbsp sweet almond oil
- Green tea leaves (as much as you like)
- Pour the Epsom salt and baking soda into a medium-sized bowl and mix well.
- In a small bowl, combine the essential oils with the carrier oil. Mix well for about 30 seconds to fully incorporate the essential oils into the almond oil.
- Pour the oil mixture over the Epsom salt mixture and stir to combine.
- Add as many green tea leaves as you like to the bowl and gently fold them in. To do this, you can simply open up green tea bags and dump the contents in the bowl.
- When everything is fully mixed, pour the entire mixture into a glass jar and screw on the lid to keep fresh.
- When ready to use, pour about 1/2 cup in a foot soaker with lukewarm water and stir until dissolved. Let your feet soak in it for 20 minutes. Repeat once per week if you experience recurring fungal infections.