13 Useful Home Remedies for Brittle Nails – Tips to Get Naturally Strong Nails

| Author: Manoja Kalakanti
This content has been Medically reviewed by Dr. Surya Kedara, MBBS – General Physician

Having shining and beautifully shaped nails at the tip of the fingers enhances the overall beauty of your hands and almost all of us strive to have healthy and long nails which can be styled in any way we want. But the beauty of the hands is often marred by weak and brittle nails that becomes chipped and cracked easily. Brittle nails is a common problem that can affect both men and women and some of the common causes of weak and brittle nails are aging, excessive use of nail enamels and nail polish removers, overexposure to water. There are numerous diseases that can also cause brittle nails like fungal infections, psoriasis, eczema, anemia and lichen planus. Therefore, it is vital to take special care of nails just like we pamper our skin with the effective glowing skin home remedies. These home remedies, in combination with a few healthy lifestyle changes, can provide you naturally strong and healthy nails.

13 Potent Natural Cures for Dry Brittle Nails

The time-tested natural ingredients used in these home remedies for brittle nails are not only inexpensive and readily available but also prompt in showing results.

Lemon Juice and Olive Oil Soak

Both lemon juice and olive oil are extremely important natural beauty ingredients that are widely used for various skin and health problems and lemon juice is an effective natural bleach that is frequently used to remove suntan. The mixture of lemon juice and olive oil also an effective remedy for dry brittle nails also. Olive oil has the capacity to penetrate the nail cuticles in order to repair and strengthen the nails. Lemon juice helps in fortifying damaged and peeling nails while removing ugly yellowish stains from the nail surface and giving it a bright sheen.

lemon and olive oil for nails

Mix 3 tablespoons of olive oil with 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice and heat the mixture in the microwave till the mixture is slightly warm. Massage the mixture on each and every nail and then soak your fingertips in the mixture for 20 minutes. Leave it overnight and watch your nails transform the next morning.

Beer Soak

Beer is not only the favorite drink for celebrations and parties it is an important ingredient in home remedies for skin and hair as well. Beer is a potent natural conditioner that provides soft and smooth hair with every wash. An unlikely combination of beer, apple cider vinegar and olive oil is also a powerful natural treatment for brittle nails.Beer

Beer is a great source of nail friendly minerals like potassium, phosphorus and selenium along with biotin which are essential for strong and healthy nails and hair. Olive oil helps in moisturizing the dry and chipped nail cuticles from within. Heat quarter cup of olive oil till it’s warm to touch. Now, add half cup of beer and a quarter cup of apple cider vinegar to it and soak your fingertips in this mixture for 15 minutes. Repeat this sure 1 to 2 times a week to get desired results.

Sea Salt Soak

What better way to strengthen weak and brittle toenails and finger nails that with a soothing a relaxing soak made of sea salt and warm water? This healing soak not only softens the nail cuticles and adds a brilliant shine to the nails but is also the ideal solution to the question of how to get rid of dead skin cells from feet. The minerals present in sea salt have healing and rejuvenating properties which make it a common addition to baths. Take some warm water in a big container in which you can dip your toenails comfortably.

sea salt soak for nails

Add 2 tablespoons of smooth grain sea salt and 4 drops each of wheat germ oil and lemon essential oils. Dip your toe nails and finger nails in this solution for 15 minutes and then pat dry. Apply a moisturizing hand a foot cream on your hands and feet. Follow this cure 2 to 3 times a week to get amazing results.

Coconut Oil Massage

Pure coconut oil is the one-stop solution for all hair and skin problems. A concoction of coconut oil and curry leaves is the ultimate grey hair solution, and it is also the best natural moisturizer for treating excessively dry skin. But how to strengthen brittle nails using coconut oil? Well, a nourishing coconut oil nail massage can work as an amazing moisturizer for the nails and prevent various types of nail infections. The oil helps in keeping the nails hydrated whereas the massage helps in improving blood circulation.Coconut oil

Heat some coconut oil in a vessel and apply this oil on each of the nails and massage for 5 minutes with your fingertips. Follow this process 2 to 3 times every day for best results.

Apple Cider Vinegar Soak

This is a useful and inexpensive brittle nails treatment that is readily available in the pantry. Apple cider vinegar is a widely used ingredient in DIY skin and hair care remedies, and it is undoubtedly the best natural way to treat dandruff and scalp itching. Organic apple cider vinegar is loaded with minerals like iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium along with vitamins – all of which are essential for developing stronger and thicker nails.Apple Cider Vinegar

In addition, the malic acid and acetic acid found in apple cider vinegar helps in keeping nail infections at bay. Mix equivalent portions of apple cider vinegar and water in a bowl and immerse your nails in this solution for 10 minutes. Follow this cure once every day and see your nails become thicker and stronger. You can store the solution for using it the next day.

Vitamin E Oil Massage

Vitamin E oil is fast finding its way into DIY home remedies for skin care. Vitamin E is an essential component of skin and hair that provides youthful appearance and supplements to skin and makes hair thicker and stronger. One of the major causes of brittle nails is the lack of moisture in the nails, and vitamin E oil works as an amazing brittle nails cure by keeping the nails hydrated and moisturized. It also helps in supplying nourishment to the nail cuticles.

Vitamin e capsules

Extract the oil from a vitamin E oil capsule and coat all the nails with the oil and massage gently for 5 minutes before going to bed. Follow this cure daily to see noticeable changes in your nails.

Tea Tree Oil Drops

The power antiseptic properties of tea tree oil makes it a popular natural medicine for a wide range of skin problems and the use of tea tree oil for ringworm in humans is well known. Tea tree oil also helps in treating brittle nails caused by fungal infections and it is one of the unsurpassed nail fungus home remedies that provide prompt results. It also helps in treating discolored nails. But tea tree oil should always be applied in diluted form, mixed with water or some other oil because it is strong in nature.

Tea Tree Oil

Add 5 to 6 drops of tea tree oil in 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil. Rub this solution thoroughly on the nails and wait for 30 minutes. Wash your nails with lukewarm water, pat dry and apply a moisturizing lotion. Follow this cure 2 times day for 1 month.

Lemon Juice Swipe

Raw lemon juice is the ultimate treatment for all types of skin and hair problems and natural cure for dark circles around eyes. It is also one of the functional home remedies for brittle nails that help in strengthening and brightening the nails and getting rid of the ugly yellow stain caused by overuse of nail polish. It also treats dryness, chipping and peeling of the nails caused by nail polish removers.

Lemon Juice Swipe for nails

Squash out fresh lemon juice from a whole lemon, dip a cotton pad in the juice and wipe each nail with the juice. Massage the rest of the juice on the nails, wait for 10 minutes and rinse off with lukewarm water. Follow this cure 2 to 3 times every week for 1 month.

Egg Yolk and Milk Soak

One the main causes of weak and brittle nails is lack of nutrients such as protein and calcium and egg yolk and milk are some of the best and easily available natural sources of protein and calcium that helps in fortifying the nails.

Egg Yolk and Milk Soak for nails

Although, a mixture of milk and egg yolk is not very appealing, but it is one of the useful natural remedies for brittle nails that show prompt results. The mixture provides intense moisture to the nails and prevents peeling or splitting. In addition, the nails will also look whiter than before. Mix an egg yolk with 2 tablespoons of milk, beat well and massage this mixture onto your nails thoroughly. Wait for 20 minutes and clean it off with lukewarm water.

Herbal Nail Mask

We use a wide range of homemade masks to pamper our skin and hair, and then why should our nails be deprived of this nourishing care? A fragrant and nourishing herbal nail mask works as good as a manicure that will provide stronger and thicker nails just after a few applications. Add a teaspoon each of chamomile and peppermint tea in a cup and pour a cup of boiling water over the tea mixture. Allow it to steep for 2 hours and then strain the tea.Herbal Nail Mask

Add a teaspoon of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of wheat flour to the tea, blend it well and apply it on all the nails, covering them thoroughly. Wait for 1 hour and rinse off with water. Follow this cure 1 to 2 times a week for best results.


Horsetail is a thin, perennial herb that looks like the tail of a horse. This herb is a rich source of some of the essential minerals for the body such as calcium, iron, manganese along with tannins, flavonoids and fatty acids – all of which are necessary for growing strong and healthy nails. It also helps in removing white spots and infections from nails. The benefits of horsetail herb can be utilized simply by consuming horsetail extract daily on soaking the nails in a horsetail infusion.

Horsetail herb

In order to prepare the infusion add 2 tablespoons of the dried herb to a cup of hot water, cover it and let it steep for 10 minutes. Let the infusion cool and soak your nails in it for 20 minutes. Pat dry and apply some olive oil on the nails. Follow this cure 3 to 4 times a week for best results.

Petroleum Jelly

Petroleum jelly has always been the best friend for dry and flaky skin throughout winter, and it is also the best natural cure for chapped lips as well. It is a multipurpose product that is used for treating a number of skin problems. Dehydration is one of the leading causes of brittle nails.Petroleum Jelly

Smearing some petroleum jelly or Vaseline on your nails at night before going to bed is an easy and simple trick to keep the cuticles hydrated and prevent them from splitting. Follow this nightly ritual daily for 1 to 2 months and cover your nails by wearing thin cotton gloves before sleeping.

Hot Oil Treatment

Massaging the nails with natural oils such as coconut oil is good enough, but it works even better when the nails are pampered using a deep nourishing hot oil treatment. You can use natural oils like almond oil, olive oil or jojoba oil for this treatment. The nutrients and healthy fats present in the oils helps in restoring the nails that have been damaged by overuse of nail polish and nail polish removers.

Mix equal parts of olive oil, almond oil, and jojoba oil and heat the mixture till it’s warm to touch. Dip small pieces of cotton in the oil and apply the soaked cotton pieces on each of the nails. Wrap foils around the nails in order to keep them covered. Wait for 10 minutes and remove the foil and cotton. This procedure allows the oils to penetrate and enter the nails.

Tips to Get Stronger Nails and Prevent Splitting

Along with these useful home remedies, you can also follow some healthy tips in order to get healthier and stronger nails.

Healthy Diet – Split and brittle nails are one of the tell-tale signs of lack of nutrients in the diet. It is important to bring about a few positive changes in your lifestyle and follow a healthy food chart in order to have strong and healthy nails, beautiful skin and thick hair. The diet should be rich in proteins, vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. Some of the essential nutrients for healthy nails are vitamins A, B vitamins, C, D and E along with folic acid, iron, calcium, zinc, and biotin.

File Your Nails – Smoothing the rough edges of your nails using a file and keeping it well-rounded prevents chipping a peeling of the nails. But it is necessary to file only in one direction, because, filing back and forth can weaken the nails.

File Your Nails

Buff Your Nails – Use an inexpensive four-sided nail buffer to buff your nails. Buffing increases blood supply to the nail matrix, the tissues present underneath the nails that produce new fingernails. Buffing also smoothes the uneven edges and adds a natural shine without the use of chemical-laden polishes.

Protect Your Nails From Water – Excessive exposure to water can make your nails soft and brittle because water strips away the natural moisture from skin and nails. Therefore, wear dish gloves while washing dishes and cleaning.

Moisturize Frequently – Make it a habit to moisturize your hands and nails by applying a nourishing moisturizer after washing your hands, taking a bath, getting out of the pool, finishing cleaning or washing dishes. Give extra care to the fingers and nails. This will help in keeping the nails hydrated and prevent breakage.

Stay Away from Nail Polish Removers – Nail polish removers can dry out the nails excessively and make them prone to chipping and breakage. Therefore, don’t use nail polish remover more than 1 or 2 times a month and avoid nail polish removers that contain acetone.

Take Vitamin Supplements – Vitamins can help in strengthening the nails and hair strands – both of which are made primarily of keratin. Therefore, you can strengthen and fortify your nails by taking multivitamin supplements that contain biotin, an important B vitamin. The daily consumption of biotin should not exceed 300 micrograms.

Don’t Use Fake Nails – Fake nails are frequently used my women who have weak and brittle nails. But it is best to stay away from fake nails if you want to avoid nail fungus. The fake nails that are glued on top of the real ones create a gap in-between which acts as the impeccable breeding ground for fungus and can lead to painful bacterial infection.

Don't Use Fake Nails

So, get rid of weak and brittle nails naturally and make your nails healthy and strong from within so that you can grow and style them as you want with these effective home remedies.

13 Useful Home Remedies for Brittle Nails – Get Strong Nails – PDF

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