Athletes foot often first appears as an itchy red rash, typically beginning between the fourth and fifth toe. If left untreated, the skin may become highly sensitive to the touch. If allowed to progress, the condition can result in white, peeling skin.  Typically contracted in damp communal areas, such as public pools, locker rooms, or showers, Athlete's foot is a highly contagious, persistent ailment caused by fungal growth on the feet.