7 Best Essential Oils For Toenail Fungus That Work

There are several proven remedies that you can use to treat toenail fungus at home. Using essential oils is a good natural remedy for fungal attacks on the toenails.

Fortunately, nature has blessed us with many essential oils from different plant sources.

Besides the oils, antifungal foods are great for preventing fungal attacks.

Every kind of essential oil has great therapeutic value in healing different diseases. But a few essential oils have antifungal properties. They all work very well to get rid of toenails fungus and athlete’s foot.

This article will discuss the 7 potential essential oils for the treatment of toenails fungus.

What Is Nail Fungus?

Nail fungus is a common infection. It gets through the cracks in the nail or cuts in the skin surrounding the nail.

Nail fungus (onychomycosis) is mostly caused by the fungus known as dermatophyte fungi. Non-dermatophyte fungi and Candida can also cause it.

Nail fungus infection usually happens more easily to the toenails than the fingernails. The toenails are vulnerable to infection because the toenails remain confined in warm, dark, and moist environments inside your shoes.

Toenails also get frequently sullied by dirt and wetness from the ground. Toes receive less blood flow than fingers. All these make the body’s immune system weak on the toes to prevent infection.

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

The fungus may also cause skin discoloration around the nail bed.

If it is not contained through timely treatment, it can spread to other toes, skin, and even your fingernails. In severe cases of infections on toenails, some people lose the infected toenails 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 doctors usually prescribe as remedies for fungus treatment.

In extreme cases, the doctor might remove the affected toenail entirely through a minor operation.

Yet, most of these prescription medicines and surgical processes are unwarranted. Allopathic treatments for fungal attacks involve a complicated process with some possible side effects.

Frequent visits to your doctor to treat toenail fungus also take a lot of your time and energy. Worst of all, only some of them work to meet your expectations.

The best treatment for fungus is natural remedies with essential oils.

Alternative treatments are great as they are safe, inexpensive, and very convenient to do at your home.

People have successfully used various essential oils to cure toenail fungus infections. They have been in use since ancient times. As soon as you spot symptoms of infection, you can treat it with any of the essential oils that work to eliminate the fungus.

Now, look at some of the essential oils with powerful antifungal properties.

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Best Essential Oils For Getting Rid Of Toenail Fungus

Any good essential oils with the power to antifungal activity 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 bark of particular plants. Many oils contain antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Oils work exceedingly well to cure various common diseases. Some of them also contain anesthetic properties that help in reducing pain.

EOs are very powerful, so always dilute the oil with carrier oil. An oil blend of two or more oils has greater potency and healing power.

I have selectively handpicked powerful essential oils for toenail fungus that is proven very effective.

1. Tea Tree Oil

The most effective essential oil for toenail fungus is tea tree oil. This essential oil should be your first choice in treating the fungus Trichophyton rubrum (T. rubrum).

Tea tree oil is naturally enriched with antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory substances. Thus, it has a significant medicinal value.

Some studies suggest that Melaleuca alternifoliate (tea tree) oil’s antifungal effects are effective in fighting fungal diseases like Candida and Onychomycosis.

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

How to use:

Wash and cleanse your toes with water and soap; use a soft brush to remove the dirt and dust from your 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 cured.


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

2. Oregano Essential Oil

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

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

Interestingly, some recent studies say that the healing benefits of oregano are superior to the commonly prescribed antibiotics. It is the ultimate antibiotic without side effects. Other studies have shown how strong this oil is against different fungi. It is an ideal natural solution for treating infected nails.

How to use:

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

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, relieving skin rashes, and fighting diseases caused by fungus and bacteria.

In 1998, the Argan forest in Morocco was declared 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 other skin irritations.

How to use:

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

4. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is a traditional medicine for treating various skin and nail infections. Due to its eucalyptol content, it has antifungal, antispasmodic, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Eucalyptus essential oil is colorless and has a distinctive taste and odor. Studies indicate the great potential of antimicrobial activities by eucalyptus oil because it has 1,8-cineole as its main component.

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

How to 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 essential ingredients in many domestic herbal treatments.

The thyme herb has over 300 varieties and various chemotypes. And the varieties’ chemical compositions are different of them. Oils from all varieties are not the same for their therapeutic benefits.

Thyme oil contains Caryophyllene, and Camphene oxide is an excellent antibacterial and antifungal agent.

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

One of the studies examined the antifungal effects of a generic test rub. The results indicated that using thymol effectively suppressed the fungus responsible for toenail infection. Another study reported the effectiveness of thymol in eliminating candida fungus.

How to 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 healed.

6. Cinnamon Essential Oil

Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) is a tropical plant mostly found in the tropical regions of Asia. 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 a primary ingredient in several folk medicines. Cinnamon oil, too, has several medicinal benefits to health, but it can cause an allergic reaction and skin irritation for some people.

Cinnamon and clove essential oils are rich sources of eugenol, commonly used to treat fungal infections like nail fungus. This oil can easily inhibit and eliminate the fungus that causes toenail infection.

How to use:

It is a powerful oil that can irritate the skin. Add 5 drops of cinnamon oil in 1 tablespoon of coconut oil or jojoba oil and apply this oil mixture to 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. All oil that has antifungal agents can be used to cure nail fungus. The other best oils are:

  • Manuka oil: very similar to tea tree oil,
  • Peppermint oil: contains menthol which is useful for warding off fungus.
  • Clove oil: is rich in eugenol content which is an excellent antifungal agent,
  • Winter savory oil: contains antifungal properties,
  • Lemon oil: has citrus compounds that defend the body against microbial infections.
  • Lavender oil: King of all essential oils because of its numerous health benefits; it works well for toenail fungus as well,
  • Lemongrass essential oil: contains bioactive that possess strong antimicrobial efficacy.
  • Jojoba oil: contains antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties,
  • Coconut oil: fatty acids help to destroy the fungus that causes toenail infection.

Related article: How To Get Rid Of An Ingrown Toenail

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 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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