Red spots on your feet are most likely due to a reaction to something, such as a fungus, an insect bite, or a preexisting condition.

If you’re experiencing red spots on your feet, you should check yourself for other symptoms. This will help a doctor diagnose the red spots and figure out what’s causing them.

Athlete’s foot, or tinea pedis, is a fungal skin infection that typically occurs between the toes and on the foot. The area usually appears red and flaky. It can occur in just one spot or be spread across the foot.

You can prevent athlete’s foot by:

  • not wearing tight shoes
  • drying your feet well after washing them
  • wearing flip-flops in communal showers
  • not sharing socks or towels

How it’s treated

Treating athlete’s foot is relatively easy.

A doctor might recommend over-the-counter (OTC) antifungal ointment or powder for more moderate cases. If the OTC medication is not effective, they might prescribe a topical medication or even antifungal pills.

Learn more about antifungal drugs.

Have you been outside barefoot or while wearing sandals? If so, then you may have been bitten by an insect, such as a:

Bites from any of these insects can produce one to several red bumps on your skin.

If you’ve been outside or around an animal that has fleas, you may have fleabites.

How it’s treated

OTC medications, such as corticosteroid creams or lotions, can help the itching associated with insect bites.

If you’re allergic to grass, other plants, or another allergen and come into contact with it, such as by stepping in it, you may develop a rash. The rash is usually red and itchy, and it may also appear swollen.

If you have a rash on your feet, it’s important to find out what triggered the allergic reaction.

How it’s treated

A doctor may prescribe allergy medication. OTC topical cortisone creams or an OTC antihistamine may also help relieve your symptoms.

OTC antihistamines include:

  • cetirizine (Zyrtec)
  • chlorpheniramine
  • clemastine
  • diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
  • fexofenadine (Allegra)
  • loratadine (Claritin)

If you have a history of psoriasis, the red spots on your feet may signal a new flare-up. If you’ve never been diagnosed with psoriasis, this might be the first sign of it.

Figuring out the trigger is next. Psoriasis triggers can include:

  • dry air
  • infection
  • stress
  • lack of sunlight or excess sunlight
  • a weak immune system

Psoriasis on the feet usually appears as pink-red or dark brown patches on the bottom of your feet. The skin may be itchy, raised, and thick.

How it’s treated

Talk with your doctor about options for treating your psoriasis. They may prescribe topical ointments to help.

Psoriasis picks

Check out our reviews of the best psoriasis creams on the market.

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If the red spot is also filled with clear fluid or blood, you likely have a blister. Blisters are typically the result of continued friction or stress to the skin.

Blisters on the feet can be caused by:

How it’s treated

Blisters will typically heal on their own.

Do not pop the blister. If it pops itself, do not pull the skin off the top of the blister. The skin helps keep the wound from becoming infected.

If the red foot spots appear on a child under 5 years old, the child might have hand, foot, and mouth disease.

This viral infection is passed from person to person. Along with red spots, other symptoms may include:

The red spots will usually appear on the soles of the feet.

How it’s treated

There’s typically no treatment for hand, foot, and mouth disease other than OTC pain relievers or fever reducers, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or acetaminophen (Tylenol). Instead, the virus must run its course.

We do not often inspect our feet for signs of sun damage. Sometimes, this means early stage melanoma can go unnoticed on the foot or ankle. This is the most treatable stage of this type of skin cancer.

Risk factors for melanoma include:

  • having lighter skin
  • being in the sun often
  • having numerous moles

Melanoma on the feet can appear mostly red. The spots will be asymmetrical and have an irregular border. Melanoma can also occur underneath your toenails.

It’s a good idea to regularly check yourself for possible signs of melanoma.

How it’s treated

Contact a doctor right away if you think you might have melanoma. The sooner you receive a diagnosis and treatment, the better your outcome.

Your doctor will take into account the severity of your melanoma in order to choose the best treatment option for you.

Red spots or patches can be caused by conditions or diseases ranging from athlete’s foot to allergies to blisters. Be sure to monitor the spots on your feet to ensure they do not worsen.

Most causes are not serious and are easily treated at home. However, if you suspect melanoma, contact a doctor to get a diagnosis and treatment as soon as possible.