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what's the best preparation for my feet?


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Hi, two months from now I'm walking the camino, and I wonder what's the best preparation for my feet to avoid blisters. I wash them with cold water and spray with campherspiritus. Is it a good idea to visit a pedicure to remove the callosity? I suggest that makes my feet to soft and for that reason I get blisters? Maybe some callosity is not bad at all.
And I heard about petroleum jelly - what's the use of that, and how to use it?
please let me know about your experiences.
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hi there,

ill tell you what works best for me. Im a relatively amateur backpacker, only going for some odd 500 miles in total. Ive worn broken in boots and brand new boots on different trips and have not had problems with blisters.

the two main reasons people get blisters are from Friction and Moisture.

1. break in boots, dont lace too tight. i like to take out the insoles to break in my shoes. notice anywhere that it could be tight, instep/heel etc.
2. i LOVE liner socks and swear by them. this is how they work. the liner wicks moisture away from your foot and pushes the moisture into the oversock. then any friction that happens between your foot and your boot actually happens between the two socks.
3. when out hiking, take off your shoes and take a break sometime mid hike. turn socks inside out and let them dry for a few minutes etc.
4. wade in streams, massage feet against different stones/boulders.
5. if you are on your feet all day then your feet are as prepared as they can be.
6. walk around your house and outside without shoes to toughen up the "leather" of your feet.
7. MOST IMPORTANT: once you are hiking and notice a "hotspot" STOP walking and confront the problem right away! dont just suffer through the pain.

if you try these things and you constantly get blisters then its very likely you have ill fitting boots.

bon chemin,


Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances(2005), VDLP(2007), Madrid(2009), Ingles(2009), Sur (2011), VDLP(2011)-partial, VDLP(2014)
Blister care

Hi Marjoleen -

I walked the Camino Frances last year without a blister (I got two during training while still at home!).

Here's the anti-blister treatment that worked for me:

Every morning I coated (thickly) my feet with petroleum jelly. Never got a blister. Plus I had the softest feet by the end of the journey! When I ran out, the jelly was always available at a farmacia.

Buen camino!



New Member
Hi there, thanks both of you for you reply!

Lynn, how do you that with the petroleum Jelly: doesn't it stick to your socks and makes a mess of it? Or do you wear cotton socks inside your smartwool socks?

(sorry for my bad english, hope you understand me)



Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances(2005), VDLP(2007), Madrid(2009), Ingles(2009), Sur (2011), VDLP(2011)-partial, VDLP(2014)
Hi -
I tried liners for one day and then gave them away - hated them - made my feet feel too bulky inside my boot.

I did wear smartwool socks every day and will do so again! The jelly didn't make a mess at all - it just lets your foot move around inside the sock without any friction at all.

I haven't tried the zinc that has been suggested, but whatever works, works!

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Le Puy to SJPDP
I walked from Burgos to Santiago recently and did approx 4okm per day.
I got one blister early on and it was because I did not stop and address a hotspot. Also that day I did not remove my shoes and let my feet air.
I used every morning an anti chaff stick called bodyglide. It works the same way as petroleum gel except it also allowa your skin to breath through the membrame. It also contains an anti bacterila and anti fungal element and I found it excellent. It did not mess up my socks at all and I was really pleased with it. You can also use on your shoulders for your backpack and indeed anywhere else you expect to experience friction.

Also take your time if you can afford it. I had a time constraint and it made me rush through it but if you can afford it then take plenty of time.

Buen Camino



Serendipity - I adore 99p shops/$1 stores, and I spotted something called Simple Baby Softening Liquid Talc. It is a substitute for talcum powder, a tube of a gel-like cream for rubbing into babies' skin after bathing that leaves a dry, low friction layer. I have been using it on training walks, and it makes a noticible difference - very comfortable: no friction, no sweaty skin, and no grease. It feels much better than Vaseline, and has conditioned my skin, too. And only 99p...

It is one of the Simple range (a UK range of unscented products), manufactured by Accantia Health and Beauty (UK). Website: http://www.simple-baby.com

Less than a week to go - pack weight down to 5.5Kg without water, but dithering about rainwear. I have a waterproof pack liner, waterproof boots and an 'emergency' type poncho. I've been too much of a cheapskate so far - and nothing suitable has turned up in charity shops, but I expect I'll crack and dive into a hiking shop at the last minute!

Thanks for all the advice from members,



Active Member
I don't really think there Is any preparation you can make... Just make sure your boots fit, make sure your heart is ready and bam... Hit the road.

I hope the Camino is kind to you and that you live it...
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