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Hiking Boot Question - suggestions for dealing with a callus under foot

I attended the virtual REI-Oboz: Lace Up and Explore event today!  It was GREAT and very informative. Thanks to REI and Oboz - two of my favorite companies.  I had a late question that was not answered due to the time limitations - How do you manage or deal with a callus (on the bottom of your foot) while hiking?  



4 Replies

@Joe thanks for the feedback on the REI + Oboz virtual event - so glad you were able to attend and found it helpful (although apologies we didn't get your question answered). We have reached back out to Oboz for a response, but are also trusting that our community members/employees will weigh in with suggestions as well!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Hi @Joe!

I'm glad you enjoyed the Oboz event!

When you talk about a callus, I'm wondering if you're actually talking about a corn? The reason I ask is typically calluses aren't painful or cause issue--they vary in size and shape. A corn is a small, raised center bump that's surrounded by inflamed skin and can be tender when pressed. You can buy special corn bandages to help relieve pressure caused by a shoe if that's the case.

If the issue is being caused by a large callus pad that's somehow impacting your gait, I'd actually recommend going to see a podiatrist before you try any home treatments or make footwear adjustments, since they aren't typically supposed to be large or painful. 

I'm happy to offer more ideas if you have more specifics on what you're experiencing, but a doctor's advice is best, especially if this has been a chronic issue.

Here's to happier hikes!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Yes, you are correct a corn, not a callus.   So extra padding will help.  Thanks!

Hi @Joe 

Thank you for attending the Oboz virtual event today, glad to hear you enjoyed! They certainly covered a lot of information in a short amount of time.

To address your question about managing calluses while hiking, and in relation to your footwear – you may be able to follow some of the same principles as advised in blister treatment & prevention. Check out the REI Expert Advice article on Blister Care & Prevention

To highlight a few key points that I think may serve the topic at foot (<--pardon the pun), try these:

  • Tape: Studies suggest that inexpensive “tear-to-size” paper surgeon’s tape is effective and has a gentle adhesive; kinetic tapes also work very well; cloth and synthetic medical tapes are additional options, as is duct tape in a pinch.
  • Blister bandages with pads and gels: Products like 2nd Skin can be used on both hot spots for prevention and for blister treatment.

Reducing as much friction as possible will be helpful in this situation, which can be achieved by having a proper boot/shoe fitting done at an REI store to make sure you have the right footwear for your need, and getting hiking socks that are moisture wicking (maybe liners too? Total preference-based option).

Since you’re an Oboz fan, it’s likely that you’ve gone through some of these steps! I also tossed this question over to our friends over at Oboz, and will see what sort of advice they send back. I’ll be sure to follow-up!

If this goes beyond the purview of a proper boot-fit and hiking gear, it may be worth seeing a medical professional if the problem persists and prevents you from doing what you love! Hope you have some great Autumn hikes coming up soon!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.