Nail fungus is caused by all types of yeasts or moulds in the environment, and if you have a small crack in your nail, that bacteria will quickly make its way in. Nail fungus typically presents as discolouration, cracking, or overly thick nails, and it’s not an uncommon occurrence. So, what can you do about it?
If you’re suffering with nail fungus, know you’re not alone. It’s believed that one in four people are living with some form of fungal infection, but there are plenty of at-home remedies available without a doctor’s visit. Keep reading to find out which are the best of the bunch.
Source: British Skin Foundation
1. Best Reviewed: Scholl Fungal Nail Treatment
With over 15,000 reviews on Amazon.co.uk – 80% of which are four stars or above – this Scholl fungal treatment is the top choice for an at-home remedy.
Many reviewers are happy with both the detailed instructions and how the product works. Plus, where many such treatments claim to solve this issue fast, Scholl clarifies that the process takes time, so you won’t be disappointed if you see no changes after a couple of weeks.
One of the necessary treatments for nail fungus is to gently file the nail surface away so the medicine can reach the infected area. This Scholl device provides disposable files for weekly use, so you don’t need to buy additional tools. Disposing of the files is crucial; otherwise, you’ll just spread the fungal infection further.
Good to Know
If your nail is especially thick, it’s more than likely that you’ll need to buy another pack to see the best results. Also, if you have more than one infected nail, you’ll need to buy a pack for each. I had to do this because a nail infection on my big toe spread to three other toes.
Something that a few customers commented on was the packaging and overly complicated plastic case. Some even said they couldn’t get the files out. In addition, a few reviews suggested it’s difficult to understand how and where the product comes out.
But overall, this is highly recommended, and the majority of reviewers reported improvements after use. Not only that, but it’s very affordable and cheaper than some of the other lesser reviewed products on the market.
2. On a Budget: THERA HEALTHCARE Premium Fungal Nail Destroyer
Even though this product (from Amazon.co.uk) costs a little more than the one above, it comes in a 50ml bottle. That’s huge compared to some other treatments, which are under 10ml.
With that in mind, this would work on multiple nails without you needing to purchase extra bottles.
Between the almond, melaleuca leaf (tea tree), jojoba seed, and argon seed oils, this topical treatment is natural, effective, and very hydrating. Here’s how they work:
- Sweet almond oil contains B vitamins that will fight the infection.
- Tea tree is known for its antiseptic and antifungal properties.
- Jojoba seed oil works as an anti-inflammatory.
- Argon seed oil is very hydrating and will help to maintain the health of the nail and cuticles.
Something many reviewers commented on was the ease of use, thanks to the brush provided. Since many of these products are applied with a dropper, having a small brush will ensure the treatment covers the whole area without spilling.
Just remember to wash the brush thoroughly after every use.
Good to Know
Although this product claims you’ll see results in two to four weeks, it also suggests that it needs to be used for three to six months.
Not only that, but you need to apply this three times per day without fail. That could be an issue if you have to work since it’s not super convenient to soak your toes at the office.
3. For Severe Cases: Imperial Feet Store Severe Fungal Nail Treatment
Some cases of nail fungus are worse than others. It could be that you often wear tight shoes or work in a warm, moist environment, such as a gym or pool. Either way, for thicker, more serious cases, you’ll need something a little stronger.
This product from Imperial Feet Store on Amazon.co.uk has over 6,500 reviews, and three-quarters of them are four stars and above.
A lot of customers praise not only its effectiveness but also how fast it seems to work. In addition, you get 75ml in this one bottle, so it should last a long time unless you have multiple toes that need treating.
Check out this video for information on the product and a visual on how to file your affected nail before applying:
Source: YouTube: The Meticulous Manicurist Nail Tutorials
Skip to 1:40 to hear the manicurist describe the client’s issue and how she started using this specific product.
Skip to the three-minute mark to see how she files the big nail to prepare it for the topical treatment. You’ll notice she spends quite a bit of time on it, removing that top layer entirely so the medicine can penetrate the infection.
Skip to 15:35 to see before and after pictures of how the toe responded to the treatment.
Good to Know
This doesn’t come with any files, so I recommend buying a bulk pack, like this 100 Pack Nail File Set from Amazon.co.uk.
After all, if you need this product because your nail is thick and seriously infected, you’ll need enough disposable files to last a few months.
4. Natural Option: Dr.Organic – Tea Tree Antifungal Nail Solution
Although this natural remedy doesn’t have as many reviews as some of the others, it’s very affordable and perfect for those looking for an all-natural solution.
Tea tree is a natural antiseptic which is why it’s often seen as an additive to some of the other nail fungal products. The thing to remember is that consistency is key. If you don’t apply this daily, you won’t see results any time soon.
For best results, pair it with this Tea Tree Oil Foot Soak With Epsom Salt (from Amazon.co.uk). The combination of dead sea salt, tea tree, eucalyptus oil, rosemary oil, lavender, and peppermint work together to kill fungus and odour.
Here’s how to use the two in tandem:
- Soak your feet for 10-15 minutes in warm water with salts.
- Dry thoroughly.
- Gently file the now soft nail, removing as much of the top layer as you can.
- Apply the nail solution, massaging into the nail and surrounding skin.
- Leave to dry completely before putting on socks and shoes.
Good to Know
The bottle comes with a brush applicator, but it might be better to buy a separate small brush that you can wash between uses to avoid the spread of bacteria.
Since this is a natural remedy, it doesn’t have the same chemicals or strength as some of the other products, which means it might not be as effective.
5. Easy Application: Naturally Solved Fungal Nail Treatment Cream
If you don’t like the idea of dropping oil onto your toes, this cream (from Amazon.co.uk) is an excellent alternative with plenty of good reviews.
Not only does it have many of the same ingredients listed in the products above, such as tea tree, rosemary, and lavender, it’s also handmade in the UK and 100% vegan.
Unlike oils, which absorb quickly, this antifungal nail cream will work to soothe the whole area, reducing itchiness and any discomfort you might be feeling.
Good to Know
Creams are not as concentrated as oils, so this would produce better results if you soaked your feet first and file the nail. Then, be sure to massage the cream in thoroughly and leave it to dry.
If you put your socks and shoes on too quickly, the cream will absorb into the sock rather than your nail.
Another thing to note is that some customers complained about the lack of instructions. Also, some customers claimed that they received a box with files, where others didn’t.
However, I still recommend buying a bulk pack of files as you’ll need to dispose of them after each use anyway.
Can I Wear Nail Polish While Treating Nail Fungus?
Nail fungus is unsightly, so it’s no surprise that most people look for ways to cover it up. If the nail isn’t too thick or cracked, a simple coat of nail polish should do the trick, But is it a good idea?
You can wear nail polish while treating nail fungus with breathable polish that allows oxygen to penetrate. Fungus thrives in the dark, so covering it with thick polish will only encourage its growth. Look for a polish that contains tea tree oil and always give your nails a break every now and then.
Since nail polish makes the nail dark and can potentially trap moisture inside, there are a few steps to follow if you want to cover your fungus.
- Make sure the nail is completely clean and dry.
- File the area and apply the antifungal treatment, leaving it to dry for at least 15 minutes.
- Apply breathable nail polish to the nail, being careful not to go too thick.
- Don’t leave nail polish on for too long, and give your nail a break at least every couple of weeks by keeping it polish-free.
This Dr’s Remedy Enriched Nail Polish from Amazon.co.uk comes in a bunch of colours and is both breathable and contains tea tree. So as it’s on your nail, it’s allowing air through, and the tea tree can help with the bacterial infection.
However, keep in mind that many of these treatments need daily applications. So if that’s the case, it’s probably best to avoid nail polish until the issue is fixed or until you can move on to a less frequent antifungal medication.
Source: Patel Podiatry
Will Canesten Treat Nail Fungus?
Canesten is an antifungal cream used to treat skin conditions such as vaginal yeast infections, oral thrush, diaper rash, and athlete’s foot. But what about nail fungus?
Canesten is not recommended to treat nail fungus because the cream is designed to penetrate skin, not nails. Although it may help with very mild cases, it won’t work against anything more serious. Instead, look for Canespro Fungal Nail Treatment Set, which is specifically designed for nails.
Canespro Fungal Nail Treatment Set for Toenails from Amazon.co.uk costs a little more than the other products on this list, but many reviewers praise how well it works and how fast.
I hope you found this article helpful and that you can use it to find the right nail fungus treatment for you.
Remember, plenty of people suffer from the same thing, so don’t keep your feet locked away!