A Foot Bath With Listerine And Vinegar?

If you’ve grown tired of the same old beauty routines and are itching to stir things up a little, then you don’t need to look very far. You don’t need to look far to see that the Listerine and vinegar foot soak has been around for a long time. So, is it myth in the annals of DIY foot soaks, or magic?

Yes, there is a never-ending plethora of weird and wacky at-home maintenance tricks that are designed to let you play the self-care game in ways you’ve never heard of before. Whether it’s applying a banana peel as a teeth whitener, trying to lighten dark underarms with potatoes, or using a silicone bra insert as a beauty blender, anything is possible if you’ve got an open mind and an eye for turning ordinary items into something beyond their scope. But according to Bobbie Thomas of the Today Show, and Allure Magazine, it works!

Homemade Foot Soak For Dry Feet

For those who struggle with dry, cracked heels and toughened soles, nails so sparse and rough that not even the brightest and boldest splash provided by a DIY pedicure could distract from the state of your feet, it might be time to seek alternative methods. Dermatologists and beauty enthusiasts alike have turned to the intriguing concoction of a Listerine and vinegar foot soak, that’s been said to exfoliate the skin, decrease the severity of foot fungus and bacteria, and leave the sole of your feet as soft as the day you were born. Too hard to believe? Fair enough. But if your interest has been stirred, and if you don’t go for a salon pedicure ever, read on for a comprehensive look at this bizarre-sounding but ultimately credible tactic.

Homemade foot soak for dry feet

What Is A Listerine & Vinegar Soak?

A Listerine and vinegar foot soak is a foot bath that’s meant to act as a substitute means to revive tired and sore feet and heels, as well as help prevent conditions like athlete’s foot and toenail fungus. Not only is this DIY foot soak effective, but it’s also incredibly easy to do.

What Can You Expect?

Due to the acids and alcohol present in both solutions, expect some slight tingling to occur during the first soak. But that doesn’t mean you should worry! Much like your regular chemical peels at the spa, a little bit of tingling only means that the exfoliants are doing their jobs. Some people say that they see an immediate difference in terms of softer and smoother heels, while others claim to need more than one soak before results appear. This will depend on certain factors, such as the initial state of your feet.

According to Medical News Today:“Listerine is a natural disinfectant. It is not designed to treat infections, but it might help prevent them.”

Those with preexisting fungus infections and athlete’s foot will definitely need more time to allow the foot soak to work its magic. So don’t fret if you don’t see results right away! As with all new beauty procedures, these things can take time and regular practice.

The Listerine & Vinegar Foot Treatment

Here is what you need:


Mix equal parts water, vinegar, and Listerine into the tub, making sure you fill it enough to cover the tops of both feet. Afterwards, simply submerge your feet into the mixture for around 15-30 minutes. Gently wipe your feet down with a clean washcloth and inspect the state of your soles. Some report distinct changes in their dry skin and calluses after as little as one session.

How Does It Work?

Because Listerine contains Thymol, an ingredient that’s known to target bacteria and fungi, this soak acts to prevent the spread of toenail infections. In addition, all skincare junkies know the importance of using salicylic acid in their nightly regimens, as this chemical exfoliant is best for shedding off dead skin cells and rejuvenating what lies underneath. Similarly, Listerine is made with methyl salicylate, which has the same exfoliating properties in order to work on the hard skin of your soles (Another great product for this is Baby Foot…gotta try it!) . This chemical is also a staple component of many pain reliever creams, leading some to believe that this foot soak can also diminish muscle and joint pain.

On the other hand, vinegar is an acetic acid that can cause irritation when used in high quantities. However, when tempered by the Listerine and water, vinegar’s naturally acidic properties mix in with the acids present in the Listerine to make a decent exfoliant capable of helping your skin get rid of those unwanted outer layers.


Although the relatively low amounts of each ingredient should make this foot soak safe enough for regular use, it’s always best to build on what you know is right for you. Consider doing a patch test on your arm to gauge how the mixture will react to your skin, especially if it’s sensitive. It’s also imperative that you give the soak ample time to penetrate through the soles of your feet, so set aside an hour or so in the day where you can sit uninterrupted and allow it to work its magic. If you want to add a special spa-like touch, throw in an essential oil such as lavender for an extra dose of relaxation.

What To Do After

In order to slough off those dead skin cells, use a foot scrubber upon removing your feet from the soak to bring that fresh and glowing skin to the surface. You can also follow up this step with some lotion to lock in that hydration and to soothe any mild irritation that might occur. Always ensure that you wipe off any residual moisture with a clean and dry cloth, especially if you have athlete’s foot. For the ultimate smooth finish, apply petroleum jelly (we prefer this one)  to your soles and wear under a pair of cotton socks overnight. This will certify that the cream imbues itself into the skin.

If you’re short on options, big on creativity, and with just the right pinch of curiosity, the Listerine and vinegar foot soak might be something worth trying. While it makes no bones about being a universal answer, this simple procedure may be what you need to shake up your beauty routine and leave you with firmer and softer feet in the process.