Splits in the skin about the heel is usually both embarrassing and painful. This issue is because of the thick or dry skin, on and around the edges of the heels. The skin on your feet is generally more dry and dehydrated than the skin elsewhere on the rest of the body most likely as there are no oil glands within the thicker epidermis on the soles of the feet. For this reason, your skin around the heels may possibly lose suppleness and elasticity as a result of that loss of moisture. Due to the loads of walking, that dry skin can start to crack and it can cause ugly, painful cracked heels which can at times bleed. There are many things that increase the chance for the cracked heels including higher pressure, increased bodyweight, poor fitting shoes (particularly footwear which are open at the back), inherited genes, unhygienic conditions and inadequate footcare, and dietary deficiencies.
In order to avoid cracked heels, always attempt to wear properly fitted enclosed shoes that enable your feet to breathe and avoid footwear that are open at the back. It is very important to keep well hydrated by consuming a minimum of two litres of water daily because that will help. Exfoliate the skin on a regular basis and moisturise daily with a good lotion. When it is more severe, this probably should be carried out twice daily to begin with. You will find suggestions that omega 3 and zinc supplements may help (however they really do need to be used with the other solutions and not in isolation). It would also help to avoid too much exposure of the feet to water or moist conditions. It is necessary that you rinse your feet with warm water instead of very hot water. If these kinds of methods do not help, then see a skilled podiatrist. They will take away the thicker hard skin and give additional advice on the way to self manage.