Essential Oils For Toenail Fungus | Do They Work?

Essential oils work great for toenail fungus elimination, perhaps, better than most of the prescription medicines for fungal infections.

Every type of fungal infection on any part of the body is difficult to deal with because of the pain and harm they cause to the affected area. Fungal infection of the toenails is a common fungal disease that occurs to most people at least once in life.

If you are now suffering from a fungal infection, it can be easily treated well without even consulting a doctor. There are several proven home remedies that you can use to treat the toenail fungus at home.  Using essential oils proved to be the best natural remedy for fungal infection of the toenails.

Fortunately, nature has blessed us with many types of essential oils from different plants. Every kind of essential oil has great therapeutic value in healing different diseases. But a few of them contain high-quality antifungal properties, and they all work very well for getting rid of the toenails fungus.

In this article, we are going to discuss the 7 best essential oils for healing toenails fungus.

What Is Nail Fungus?

Nail fungus is a common type of infection that gets through the cracks in the nail or cuts in the skin that surrounds the nail.

Nail fungus (onychomycosis) is mostly caused by the fungus known as dermatophyte fungi. It can also be caused by non-dermatophyte fungi and Candida.

Nail fungus infection usually happens more easily to the toenails than the fingernails. The toenails are vulnerable to fungal infection as they are usually confined to the warm, dark, and moist environment inside your shoes. Toenails also get frequently sullied by dirt and wetness from the ground. Toes receive less blood flow than fingers do, and this makes the immune system of the body to be weak on the toes to prevent the infection.

Toenail infection begins with yellow or white spots on toes. Fungus-infected nails usually turn yellow in color or get thicker as the infection becomes severe. It hurts and causes cracks and erosion of nails.

If it is not contained through timely treatment, it can spread to other toes, skin, and even to your fingernails. In severe cases of fungal infection, some people lose the infected toes completely.

Benefits Of Using Essential Oils For Nail Fungus

The mainstream treatment for fungal nail infections includes both oral and topical medicines.  There are creams, gels, nail polish, and pills that are usually prescribed by doctors as remedies for nail fungus treatment. In extreme cases, the doctor might even remove the affected toenail entirely through a minor operation.

However, most of these prescription medicines and surgical processes are unwarranted. Allopathic treatments for fungal infection involve a cumbersome process with some possible side effects. Frequent visit to your doctor for the treatment of toenail fungus also takes away a lot of your time and energy. Worst of all, most of them do not work to meet your expectations.

The best remedy for nail fungus is natural remedies with essential oils. Home remedies are great as they are safe, inexpensive, and very convenient to do at your home.

People had been successfully using various essential oils to cure toenail fungus infection of ancient times. As soon as you spot the symptoms of nail fungus, you can begin to treat with any of the essential oils that work for eliminating the fungus.

Now let us have a look at some of the best essential oils that contain powerful antifungal properties and the potential to kill the dermatophyte fungi that cause toenail fungus.

Best Essential Oils For Getting Rid Of Toenail Fungus

essential oils for toenail fungus

Any of the good essential oils with antifungal effects can be successfully used to get rid of toenail fungus.

There are several types of essential oils available to you. They are usually extracted from the leaves, seeds, or barks of particular plants. Many of them contain antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties that work exceedingly well to cure various common diseases. Some of them also contain anesthetic properties that help in reducing pain.

I have selectively handpicked the best essential oils for toenail fungus that are proved to be very effective.

1. Tea Tree Oil

The best essential oil for toenail fungus is tea tree oil. This essential oil should be your first choice in treating all types of nail fungus.

Tea tree oil is naturally enriched with antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory substances that have significant medicinal value. Some studies have proved the antifungal effects of Melaleuca alternifoliate (tea tree) oil in fighting fungal diseases like Candida and Onychomycosis.

Tea tree essential oil can be used in combination with other antifungal essential oils, but it is efficient enough to be used as a standalone treatment.

Directions For Use

Wash and cleanse your toes with water and soap; use a soft brush to remove the dirt and dust from toes if required. If you can, use an antifungal soap to wash your nails and feet. Soak a cotton ball with a few drops of tea tree oil and apply it directly on your affected toenail and the skin surrounding the nail. Repeat this treatment three times a day until the fungal infection is totally cured.


Tea tree oil is very powerful and everybody’s skin won’t tolerate it; if you find this to be harsh on your skin, dilute it with a carrier oil like coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil before applying it to toes and skin.

2. Oregano Essential Oil

The ancient Romans and Greeks used oregano for treating various diseases. In fact, its name comes from the Greek words “oros” and “ganos,” which are words for mountain and joy — oregano literally means “joy of the mountain.”

This oil contains two powerful medicinal compounds called carvacrol and thymol which are excellent antifungal and antibacterial agents. It is one of the finest natural remedies for getting rid of toenail fungus.

Interestingly, some of the recent studies have proved the healing benefits of oregano superior to the commonly prescribed antibiotics. It is the ultimate antibiotic without the side effects.  Other studies have shown just how strong this oil is against different types of fungi. It is an ideal natural solution for treating nail fungus.

Directions For Use

Add 2 teaspoons of oregano oil to a basin of water and soak your feet in it for 10-15 minutes. Another method is to add 8 drops of oregano essential oil to two teaspoons of carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil and apply this oil mixture on the fungus-affected nail and the skin surrounding it.

3. Argan Essential Oil

The natives of Argan Forest in Morocco have been pressing the Argan nut to extract its precious oil for centuries.

In Morocco, argan oil is used to dip bread in at breakfast or to drizzle on couscous or pasta. This oil is beneficial for healing wounds, providing relief from skin rashes, and fighting diseases caused by fungus and bacteria.

In 1998, the Argan forest in Morocco was declared as a Biosphere Reserve By UNESCO.

Argan Oil is excellent for hair, skin, and nail care because of the fatty acids and Vitamin E present in this oil. It is one of the best-known essential oil treatments for nail fungus and various other types of skin irritations.

Directions For Use

Apply a few drops of Argan oil on the fungus-affected nail and skin three times a day till the infection is totally healed. The antifungal agents in this oil will gradually eliminate the fungus that causes toenail infection.

4. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is used as a traditional remedy for treating various skin and nail infections. It has antifungal, antispasmodic, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties due to its eucalyptol content. This oil is used as a unique ingredient in several natural remedies or a standalone remedy.

Eucalyptus essential oil is colorless and has a distinctive taste and odor. Studies have proved the greater potential of antimicrobial activities by eucalyptus oil more than those of 1,8-cineole as their main component.

The use of eucalyptus oil for healing toenail fungus is a traditional natural remedy with proven results.  Treatment results from the past show that eucalyptus can kill the fungus causing the nail infection.

Directions For Use

Add 5 drops of eucalyptus oil to a tablespoon of jojoba oil or coconut oil and apply this oil mixture to the fungus-affected nail. Apply this oil mixture thrice a day till the fungus is fully contained.

5. Thyme Essential Oil

Thyme (Thymus Vulgaris) is an herbal plant. It is commonly used as a condiment or spice. Thyme oil and extracts are often used as an essential ingredient in many domestic herbal remedies.

The thyme herb has over 300 varieties and various chemotypes, but the chemical compositions are not the same in all varieties.  Oils from all verities are not the same for their therapeutic benefits.

Thyme oil contains Caryophyllene and Camphene oxide which are excellent antibacterial and antifungal agents.

This essential oil contains thymol (natural monoterpene phenol derivative of cymene) that is beneficial for controlling infection caused by fungal and bacterial influence. It works exceedingly well for getting rid of toenail fungus.

According to one of the studies which examined the antifungal effects of a generic test rub, it is found that using thymol effectively suppressed the fungus that is responsible for toenail infection. Another study reported the effectiveness of thymol in eliminating candida fungus.

Directions For Use

Add 5 drops of thyme oil in 1 tablespoon carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil and apply this oil mixture on fungus-affected nails and skin. Repeat the treatment twice a day till the fungal infection is totally healed.

6. Cinnamon Essential Oil

Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) is a tropical plant mostly found in the tropical regions of Asia, and it is a highly valued spice and medicinal plant in Sri Lanka and India.

The bark of the cinnamon plant is widely used as a spice for adding flavor to foods and is also used as a primary ingredient in several home remedies. Cinnamon oil too has several medicinal benefits to health, but it can cause an allergic reaction and skin irritation for some people.

It is a rich source of eugenol which is commonly used to treat fungal infections like nail fungus. This oil can easily inhibit and eliminate the fungus that causes toenail infection.

Directions For Use

It is a powerful oil that can irritate the skin. Add 5 drops of cinnamon oil in 1 tablespoon coconut oil or jojoba oil and apply this oil mixture on fungus-affected nails twice a day.

7. Other Essential Oils For Healing Fungal Infections

There are a few more essential oils that can help in fighting toenail fungus. In fact, all oil that has antifungal agents can be used to cure nail fungus. The other best oils are:

  • Manuka Essential Oil – very similar to the tea tree oil;
  • Clove Essential Oil – rich in eugenol content which is an excellent antifungal agent;
  • Winter Savory Essential Oil – contains antifungal properties;
  • Lavender Essential Oil – King of all essential oils because of its numerous health benefits; it works well for toenail fungus as well;
  • Jojoba Oil – contains antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties;
  • Coconut Oil – fatty acids help to destroy the fungus that causes toenail infection.

essential oils for nail fungus

Tips For Using Essential Oils Effectively

Essential oil treatment for toenail fungus is a great natural remedy that works every time. It is easy to use and very inexpensive than mainstream treatment. You need to consult a doctor only if you have a severe toenail infection in critical condition.

You can easily get rid of toenail fungal infections with essential oil treatments in the comfort of your home. However, you need to fulfill certain requirements to achieve fast and effective results from them. Here are some of the tips to get rid of toenail fungus faster:

  • Make sure your nails are trimmed well, and they do not hurt the skin;
  • Keep your nails and feet always neat and clean; make sure dust and dirt do not get deposited under the nail and skin around the nail;
  • Regularly wash your feet and nails with antifungal soap and water and dry them well, pay special attention to the areas under the nails and between the toes;
  • Do not allow your nails to grow thick beyond the standard size; gradually remove the extra thickness of the nail using an emery board or file;
  • Regularly disinfect the brushes and emery boards you use for cleaning your nails to prevent the spread of the fungus;
  • Make sure the shoes and socks you wear are regularly cleaned; disinfect them regularly if necessary;
  • Do not keep your feet and nails damp and heavily moisturized; do not wear wet and dusty shoes or sandals;
  • Do not walk barefoot in muddy water or damp soil
  • Do not use essential oil in excess; dilute them with a carrier oil if they are harsh on your skin;
  • Do not use nail polish while the treatment is in progress
  • Be regular with the essential oils for toenail fungus treatment; it will take a few weeks of continuous treatment to get the best results.

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