Get Rid of Nail Fungus with Inexpensive Homemade Remedies

6 Things You Must Know To Stop Nail Fungus

Trying to eliminate nail fungus? There are some very important tips you need to know to stop nail fungus before you choose your remedy or else you'll never get rid of it. Trying to get rid of nail fungus can be almost impossible especially if you have had it for years. The main reason is that nail fungus lives deep under the nail and not on the nail's surface. In fact, fungus can NOT be killed. The infection merely grows off as a healthy nails grows in. This means that whatever treatment or home remedy you use needs a little turbocharging. What follows below are not the actual anti-fungus treatments, but important things to do in conjunction with a prescribed or homemade treatment to improve their effectiveness.

photo of clear finger nails

  1. Proper Nutrition

    Proper nutrition is key to general health and well-being and could help your chances of overcoming fungus and should be the first thing on your list of things to do. Although not proven as far as fungus is concerned, it is accepted by many that when the body has the proper pH balance, nutrients, minerals and vitamins, that it is better able to ward off against many ills and effectively rid itself of toxins.

    Before starting off on any anti-fungal treatment it is important to eat properly and began an aggressive vitamin regimen at the very least. Start eating a healthy and consistent mix of fruits, vegetables and nuts instead of processed foods that are heavy on sugar, corn syrup or have hydrogenated oils. Please note that this does not mean going on a diet! You are just paying attention to the foods you eat and addressing any vitamin deficiencies. You are also looking to restore a more healthy and balanced pH level in the body. Please note that multi-vitamins like Centrum or One-A-Day... are not adequate and it is best to buy a dedicated bottle of each vitamin. Do not underestimate this crucial first step.

    Recommended key vitamins include:

    1. Vitamin C at least 500mg daily.

    2. Pantothenic acid (a.k.a. B-5) at least 500mg daily, preferably 1000-2000mg daily. It's also been reported by some users that these dosages work well in reducing acne.

    3. Vitamin E

    A simple and cheap way to maintain a healthy pH balance in the body is to mix up the following in a glass container:
    Two (2) liters of filtered or distilled water, one (1) lemon sliced, one (1) medium cucumber sliced and a few mint leaves. Let it sit overnight on the counter or in the fridge and take sips from it throughout the day. The lemons and cucumbers are alkaline foods and have a beneficial effect.

  2. Exercise and sun exposure appear to help in stopping fungus under nails

    Sunlight and air circulation is the enemy of fungus in the majority of cases. It's for this basic reason that you are encouraged to walk barefoot or use open toe sandals indoors and out whenever possible. Socks and closed shoes hold in moisture and keep out light and is exactly what you don't want.

    Many years ago I embarked on a three week bike tour of the U.S. and was surprised to see that the nail fungus on my thumb started to rapidly disappear. While I was using a topical solution called Fungus Stop each morning, the exercise and the daily sun exposure had a positive effect because up until this point it was taking forever to see improvements in the nail.

    Exercise, especially when taking Pantothenic acid and the lemon mixture above, helps to boost metabolism and improves blood circulation which aids in the dispersion of vitamins and flushing toxins out of the body. You are not looking to start going to the gym or get into some unrealistic exercise program, you just want to get back into the habit of walking and taking the stairs more often. Just a little bit of activity each day to get things moving.

  3. Daily hygiene

    Thoroughly cleaning and drying the affected nail and area twice a day before applying any antifungal solution is a must. Use soap and water and consider a small soft bristled scrub brush to get under nails. Thoroughly dry your hands and feet as water trapped under nails is a breeding ground for fungus and could very well have been the way the fungus may have started in the first place.

    Immersing nails in water for long periods as in washing dishes weakens nails which can bring on splitting nails thus becoming an entry way for fungus. Reduce that risk by always wearing cotton lined dishwashing gloves whenever cleaning.

  4. Choose a nail fungus solution or remedy wisely

    Many products claim to stop nail fungus, but few actually deliver. In fact the description on many say they are not recommended for nail fungus and only finger and toe fungus on the skin surface. Things at your local store like FungiNail do NOT work on nail fungus!

    There are remedies that work in getting rid of nail fungus, but it can take as long as a year for complete results to be obtained. By reading all the recommendations and suggestions from others suffering from fungus infection of the nails on you should find something that works for you. In some cases it could be using two or more anti-fungal remedies in tandem.

    While it may seem that over the counter or prescription products work the best in getting rid of nail fungus, many have had great success with home made anti-fungus remedies from common household items so read the rest of this site for great tips. With the high price and nasty side effects of Lamasil tablets it certainly is wise to investigate them as it can save you some money and work just as well.

  5. File Infected Nails Down

    The effectiveness of your anti-fungal remedy is contingent on its being able to penetrate the nail bed to get at the fungus. To speed things along one should LIGHTLY file down the surface of the entire nail so that the liquid or gel can soak through the infected nail quicker. The only thing to watch for is that the ends of the nails can split very easily because they are thinner. Be careful putting your hands in your pockets where it is easy to rip a nail if it snags on fabric or objects.

    Keep nails short. In addition, clip and trim fingernails and toenails so as to get rid of the fungus infected portions as they grow out to avoid re-infection. Keeping nails trim and short also prevents moisture, which breeds fungus, from being trapped under the nail.

    Remember to thoroughly clean all nail files and nail clippers in hot soapy water to avoid reinfection. Of course never share these items with others.

  6. Stick to your anti-fungal schedule

    Nail fungus is extremely difficult to get rid of so it is very important to keep applying your chosen remedy at least twice daily. Even more important is to continue doing so even after your nails look healthy again and all the fungus appears gone. In fact you may have to do this for a year or more. Just when you think you've gotten rid of the nail fungus and then stop, you find that it has started all over again so keep at it no matter what.

    Try not to contaminate and spread the fungus to other healthy nails. Use a different set of nail clippers, emery boards... for your healthy nails. Change socks and shoes daily and replace them often as fungus spores breeds within the fabric of socks and inside shoes. Wash socks in detergent and hot water and allow shoes to air dry for a few days before using them again. Use flip flops when walking in a locker room or public shower to avoid recontamination.

Let's go to the next step...

Let's move on to actual remedies that you can try along with what you just learned.

We want to hear from you!
Have you been successful in ridding your nails of fungus and having them grow healthy again? Please tell us what you used and how long it took in the comments area below.

Your Comments:

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  • Will try these tips out. Have had nailfungus for years but nothing seems to work. Any other ideas???


  • Am I missing where the tips/remedies are? I'm not seeing any listed.


  • I have nail fugus and I freakin hate it. I have it only 6 of my 10 nails. I have it under control and use Tree Tea Oil. I did stop using and it did come back, but now i use it twice daily and keeping on it, so i know for sure it doesn't come back. Tea Tree Oil is the only thing that works and i found the remedy online and i just put a dap on and it works, nails have lifted once since i started using it. I hope i get rid of it soon!


  • I used to have foot fungus for years. Then one day I noticed it disappeared. This was around the same time as a wart on my finger disappeared. I never used anything for; I did plan to get systemic antifungal treatment though...


  • What is "systemic antifungal treatment?"


  • I used Fungus Stop and it worked wonderful, except I felt the need to clean out under the nail with a needle that I had used previously and low and behold I have it again. I am looking to buy another bottle of fungus stop. If you put in on (under the nail) 3 or 4 times a day it will go away. I can vouch for that. Just don't be dumb and do what I did with the same needle. Evidently it can continue to thrive on what you use, if you don't dissinfect it before and after use.


  • Have had toenail fungus for 15 years or so from not allowing shoes to dry out - now I wear a dried out pair each day and fresh cotton or wool socks each day. Have used terbinafin tablets, worked great!! I am told that it will never go away!! My sister has found that vitamin B5 works well, so I will try that together with an external oil say tea tree or other. I have heard that petrol may work externally!!!


  • have had toenail fungus for about 8 to 9 years, and up until today i am researching ways to cure it i have tryed some liquid/cream for morning and night for about 3 or 4 months one time and i saw a lil difference but it was mostly just softening it up for me to cut it... and having it is a downfall in my life because you avoid going to the beach with friends and when i go out with family i try to hide it best i can, i hate the fact that i can't even where sandals or open toe shoes and i dread my up coming prom night in a year im hoping to find something now so i can use for a year and by prom i can wear some cute open toe shoes and even next summer be my 1st summer i am able to wear sandals. but at this point it only seems like a dream.


  • Vicks vaporub, plain old vick's salve. That works for Athletes foot and nail fungus. Use it every day. Put it on thick and heavy. Top of nails too. Wear thick cotton socks over it all.


  • I had toe nail fungus for about 9 years and it was the worst thing ever. i was always hiding my feet and going to the beach or pool was the nightmare. i tried all the home products like apple cider vinager, tea tree oil, vicks vaporrub and nothing worked. so i decided to go to the doctor and have her prescribe me lamisil. i am on my 9th week and its completely gone. i havnt seen my nails look this good in almost a decade. im happy i went to the dermatologist and now i can finally wear open toe shoes without a problem


  • Oil of oregano kills fungus!!! Just stop eating sugar during the treatment period (sugar multiplies the fungus). Apply Oil of Oregano (Not Oregano oil) on the infected nail twice every day. This is the best natural way to get healthy nails again!

    (Originally posted: March 25, 2009 4:05:52 PM EDT)


  • I had had Athletes foot for about 12 yrs. I have tried everything. I actually used lamisal which worked great for about a year but then it came back. But I actually had some great success with a home remedy from a relative. She suggested filling up a bucket with 2 gallons warm water, 2 cups bleach, 3 cups kosher salt and 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of vanilla extract. Dip your feet in the solution for 45 minutes every evening for 3 weeks. You should see some nice results by then, but if not continue for another 3 weeks.

    (Originally posted: May 21, 2009 2:58:42 PM EDT)


  • I have had nail fungus for at least 20yrs and it sucks. All though I have never used any prescription medication. I have decided to finally try to treat it and even thought it is not gone yet there are some things I have done to not only make me feel better but even make my feet look better than they did.

    First and for most if you want your nails to get that health look again you have to kill the fungus on the surface first that means athletes foot. Now many of you may think ( oh I don't have athletes foot) but if you got nail fungus then it is very likely you got it from your self. The reason you got nail fungus is because at some point it was able to get under the nail.

    Here are some things I did that worked for me.

    Step 1 wash feet or hands with soap (tea tree oil soap) if possible. This is done every time you shower and if you don't shower then when you get home from a long day wash feet. ALWAYS! Even after your feet are better this is good hygiene. Change socks every time you remove your shoes but at least once. That means clean pair in the morning and again in the afternoon. Just take a zip lock bag with fresh pair to work with you every day (this is too easy)...

    Step 2 is a home remedy that is good for feet and nails. In a large container that you can put both feet into mix 50/50 or 1 part peroxide and 1 part apple cider vinegar (the brown color one). Then soak for 20 to 30 min at least once a day. Fungus can not grow in an acidic inviroment hence the vinegar and fungus hates oxygen so that's what the peroxide is for. After the soak (before you wash feet again) trim nails. Then wash with soap using a brush to get under and around the nails. After feet have dried apply antifungal cream to feet and tea tree oil to the nails (use a Q tip this prevents cross infection to healthy nails). This can be applied in the morning and night.
    TIP: flush q tips in toilet.

    The benefits of this are (no calus, canker soars or cracked skin) and your feet will look and smell better too.

    (Originally posted: October 10, 2009 1:58:42 PM EDT)


  • It started at least 4 years ago on one finger, and has spread to all 5 fingers on my left hand. All of the nails have come off except for the thumbnail. They start to grow back, but are not healthy, so they come off again. Some of the things I've tried were, vitamin E oil, tea tree oil, vicks, bag balm and vinegar soaks. I was doing these things separately several times a day for many months, except for the vinegar soaks, as that made my fingers crack..quite painful. I have abandoned all of these treatments as none of them seemed to make a difference. Several months ago, I acquired some hens, and one of the things recommended for pest control, is Diatomaceous Earth. It's the food grade kind which you can purchase at a farm/feed supply store. Twice a week, when I file down the nail/nail bed, I make a habit of putting it on my fingernails and leave it for a while. It's been a couple of months now, and the new growth looks healthier than any other time. I'm not sure if it's wishful thinking, but I feel more optimistic with this than with anything I've tried so far.




  • I have nail fungus for a year, but I have treated it by using Vicks. I clipped out my bad nail since it was detached from the nail bed.
    I then applied vicks generously twice a day, and in around 3 months my complete nail was healthy.


  • I have been fighting toenail fungi for 5-10 years. The MD script Lamisil did not work. The teatree oil has helped, but really irritates the skin near the nail. Sanding the nail really helps and the vicks helps. A spray of straight bleach really helps, but it must be rinsed off quickly. From all of the posts i would say do it all, tea oil, vicks, soak, wash, sand , clip,


  • I, too, have had issues with fingernail fungus for years. I worked a year on my toenails using hydroperoxide twice a day on each toe and doing foot soaks, with some good results. However, the fungus continued to hang on. I finally gave up out of sheer exhaustion with the daily regiment.
    About 2 months ago I decided to start taking 1000 mg of Vitamin C twice a day to protect myself from flu. (I haven't taken Vit. C for years) Last week I had a sore throat and an allergic reaction to something...not sure what it was, so I increased my Vitamin C to 2,500mg four times a day. (I took 10,000mg worth of tablets and dissolved them in 1/2 cup of water with 1/2 tsp of baking soda. When the tablets dissolved I scummed off the top bubbles. Then I divided the remaining liquid into 4 doses...and I am repeating it for 5 days ) It doesn't taste that bad. My throat is clearing up....... are my fingernails!!!! A soft spot in a fingernail that I have had for 40 years is suddenly completely gone! And my nail isn't peeling back; it will actually need to be cut! My pinky toenails, which have been so thick that I could barely cut them are, for the first time, normal!! Mind you I was not taking Vit. C for fungus but for a sore throat! I've read that Vitamin C is what the body needs for repairing itself. It worked for me! It was cheap and easy! And no bad side effects!
    I'm elated!

    Also: Since beginning 2 months ago on Vitamin C, 2000mg a day, I am getting moons in my nails again...I haven't had them for years! Some say that moons in your nails beds are signs of good health.


  • Has anyone tried covering their toenails w duct tape for an extended period of time? I ask this because Dr. Oz said to do this to kill warts. Since I think it is the same fungus under the nail, is it possible this would be not only effective, but super easy and cheap? Also, I saw on another site sellling a toenail fungal product, they recommend applying their product and then bandaids. I think it is the bandaid part that works. Additionally, using petroleum based product like vapor rub effectively creates a barrier "starving" the area of oxygen. Thoughts anyone?


  • Duct tape would be the craziest idea ever. Fungus loves the dark so you want to expose it to light as much as possible. Sunshine is excellent for bringing it under control. Don't listen to everyone that you should avoid the sun. A little sunshine is vital for good health and well being. Go out in the morning for 15-20 minutes and let the sun do its magic. This and tea tree oil were the things that helped me.


  • So I liked peoples ideas I've been using the vinegar but last night I did think about bleach. Most things do not seem to live through bleach plus it weakens the nail. I'm going to try something like hot water bleach mixture to soften my nails then sand them and maybe file then go with anti fungal or tea tree oil for a while. I was using vinegar and it seems to soften my toenails up but I'm also going to make sure to get back on my emergency - c drrinks daily and of course try to stop wearing socks all the time. My mother has awful toe fungus to wear her toes get super thick best to stop it before it gets so bad. Hopefully combination of tricks will work I also have heard taking Acidophiles daily can help since it provides you with healthy bacteria


  • can i still apply moisturizing cream to my hands and nail area if i have fungus around the nail?




  • Never, EVER dip your feet, or any other body parts, into bleach. Bob, that was absolutely terrible advice.


  • I am workinf on many treatments for my nail fungus but please be specific about shoes. do I spray them with lysol? I don't want to throw away a couple of pairs of shoes. Dump a bunch of the powder Antifungal stuff in my shoes? The specific in your answers for me please. Thank you so very much.


  • I've had nail fungus on my toes for years. I took 2 1/2 rounds of the Lamisil pills and it did nothing. While I was pregnant the infection spread to my fingernails. Now they are painful and I can't use them for anything. I haven't really been able to try treating it for a while due to pregnancy and breastfeeding. I think I'll try the high doses of vitamin C and tea tree oil. Hopefully, that will help. None of the other topical treatments I have tried did anything at all and I have a cabinet full of them.


  • I have been bothered by toenail fungus for years. I have tried Lamisil tablets twice, but current podiatrist at VA hospital is reticent to try tablets again, because of possible damage to liver. The clotrimozole seems to be working on most of the fungus, but two nails have a "differnt" growth which appears to be the cauliflower symptoms of a wart, rather than fungus. I mentioned that to podiatrist and it was summarily dismissed with, "No, thats fungus." I don't think so. Your views, please.


  • JIm, sounds like you should seek a second opinion from another doctor and then proceed from there. Good luck.


  • "FungusStop" did not do a thing for me except take my money three times.
    Prevention; DO NOT use the same tools for the fingers and toes, as clipers, files, picks.
    DO NOT pass the tools around with other members in the family, same as you treat your toothbrush.

    I've had toe fungus for 20 years and just heard about the 'cornMeal' way.
    I'm on to it today.


  • Terbinafine (Lamisil) prescription is working for me. I am halfway through the 3 month prescription, my fingernails are 2/3s the way grown out but are coming in very thick. I'm concerned about the thickness of the nail; Will it thin out as it grows? My new, healthy toenails have grown out almost halfway, and continue to push the infected nail out.

    I agree with the point to eat healthy, as a healthy immune system in top shape wouldn't allow an infection to root to begin with. Healthy amounts of sunlight can be good in theory, as sunlight inhibits growth in many fungi.

    About topical formulas...
    Personally, I HATE the companies that make these topical anti-fungal solutions. They are required by the FDA to say clearly on the label that their products do not work on nails (AND THEY DON'T CURE NAIL INFECTIONS), but most continue to print fake before/after pictures of an infected and healthy nail. People don't read the label and buy the product based on the deceiving "before and after" pictures, often printed on the packaging, which is wrong by both parties, but those pictures shouldn't even be on the product to begin with because they aren't showing anything relevant to the product. It is fraud and *should* be illegal, and I feel bad for anyone who spends money on these products with the intentions to clear their nail infections. (apologize for the rant)
    So to clarify the purpose of these topical solutions: They do not cure nail infections, and aren't meant to be used on nails to begin with. Topical solutions can be used defensively - to prevent fungus from infecting a healthy nail, or to prevent an infected nail from spreading it's fungus to another healthy nail.

    Once my nails are clear and the terbinafine is out of my system (another 3 months after the prescription), I plan on using a topical solution to prevent reinfection.

    About my infection...
    I had an infection on my whole right hand for about 5 years, and on all toes since I was little (I don't remember a time when I had clear, healthy toenails, which is sad). I am very excited to see my nails growing out healthy, and thankful that I'm experiencing no side-effects from the medication. I'd like to add that growing up with infected toenails was not fun. Especially in the summer when you may be at the beach or pool often, with your feet exposed, obviously. For sure, a nail infection can leave its mark on a child's self-image.

    Please, to any parent who may be reading this, don't make your child go through what my parents made me! Check your child's nails and get them treatment if you find anything. Also something to keep in mind, if they have a toenail infection, they may have athlete's foot - and if they have athlete's foot, they may have jock itch as well! Which is not something they might tell you about, because most children would find it embarrassing to talk to you about that sensitive area.

    To recap: Terbinafine (lamisil) is working for me, topical formulas aren't for nail infections, and also check your childrens nails if you have children.


  • i ve used an anti fungi but it went and came back. so what else do i take advise please


  • i noticed also that hot baths, jacuzzi and covered shoes and thick blankets all contribute to activating the fungus. keeping ones body temp, particularly affected area cool and dry is a must.


  • I have had nail fungus for many years the only thing I found that helped was vicks vapor rub on the entire foot. I apply it at night making sure to apply under the nails and around them. I then put socks on so the sheets will not become greasy. I did this for about 8 months. I actually had some nails where you could see the new healthy nail growing out. They were about half way grown out when I stopped applying the vicks only to have the nails go back to there unhealthy state. I will be starting the treatment again tonight and I will probably have to apply the vicks vapor rub for the rest of my life as a prevention and as a cure.


  • Lots of great tips in these comments. I just wanted to add one more. I recently started blow drying my nails before putting my socks on and it seems to help considerably.

    I too am a tea tree oil user. I started using it about 4 months ago along with keeping the nails filed WAY down.

    Another thing to keep in mind as far as the oral meds is the side effects. My doctor is very much against it because it can do serious liver damage. So check into side effects before deciding on oral medication.

    Oh yah & remove that nail polish ladies, it is holding the fungus in there like a snug little blankie :)


  • does anyone know if you can still polish your fingernails with this ???


  • Ive been using apple cider vinegar on my toenail fungus and its truely a miracle!!


  • Had it on my thumb for 10 years!!! Went away in the last 3 months coincident with a vigorous physical training program. Hope this helps someone.


  • I had fungus in both big toe nails. I went to see a foot doctor and he cleaned up my toes and gave me these instructions:

    See Pharmacist for 1 ounce bottle of fungoid tincture

    Crush 3 lamisil tablets and add to bottle of fungoid tincture

    Apply daily

    This will take 6 months to one year to clear up the fungus. It cleared mine up and it has been cleared up over 5 years now.


  • I have fungus on the first finger of my right hand. I am treating with an ointment my doctor gave me. Should I keep it covered with a band-aid or uncovered?


  • @ Larry: you should really ask your doctor although I imagine you shouldn't cover the nail.


  • I have had a fungal infection on my finger nails for 3 years. It started on the tip of my thumb and spread to tips of all other finger nails over a period of time. I've tried tea tree oil, vicks vaporub, lamisil cream....these topical treatments will not get rid of it in my experience!
    I have now started on oral medication Sporanox (itraconazole) and after 1 mth, can already see the healthy nail growing in (with no side effects). My advice is take the oral treatment as soon as you can, cause these other topical treatments won't keep it away long term.


  • The only things that work for nail fungus in the Fla Keys is Salt wate, pool water, and sunlight. Bag Balm is great for dry skin and feet, but you cannot walk around in sandles with it all over your feet. The sun and chorlene seem the best!


  • i have fingernail fungus on four differnt fingers. I'm desparate ti get rid of it. could anyone please help me get rid of it fast?


  • My daughter had a bad case of toe fungus. She reports the following: "I soaked my toes in a solution of 1 part white vinegar and 1 part water for 20 minutes twice a day. It took almost 6 months for the nail to fully grow out though. It was a big pain but it worked, and, after almost 7 years of trying everything under the sun, I was just happy to find something that worked."

    Also, someone else suggested using Listerine in the brown bottle and said that worked.


  • I have had nail fungus, on and off, for about ten years. t has gotten better and it has gotten worse. I get Clotrimozole, by prescrition, thru the VA, have used Lamisil treatment, prescrition, which is systemic, TWICW. works for a short while. Have used Tea Tree Oil, but eh oder from it is terruble. I'm going to try a new OTC Fungi-Nail and see what that does.made5t


  • I have nail fungus for about 4 months. I have been treating it with a topical medication from the doctor and it has pretty much grown out. I did some research and have been using coconut oil ( organic) on the area and it works great. I also have a tablespoon a day that i just put it my orange juice,this also helps the process because it stops the fungus from regrowing, and also has many more amazing benefits, look it up. Very important to clip as much of the nail as possible and be consistent. After clipping, clean clippers with alcohol. Its important to still treat the area even if it's not visible because sometimes not all of the fungus is noticeable. Keep nail as dry as possible.

    I got this nail fungus from getting my nails done at a salon that ive been going to for years and looks clean, so ladies be careful and make sure all tools used in salons are clean!


  • Ive had toenail fungus for 15 years tried lamisil twice and many online treatments for years (and stuck to the program everyday )Then I tried laser treatments for over a year had it done about 9 times ,It helped some nails but not all the nails it was expensive but i would try anything to get rid of it ,Will try the vitamin C thing and comment again later ...


  • Well, a little news. U have used Lamisil treatment twice and VA doesn't want to do it again because of possible damage to the liver. Then I went the Clotrimozole treatment for a couple of years..... It's relatively cheap, but did little good. Then I went to Fungi-Nail, which a little better than Clotrimozole..... but cheaper. THEN, a friend of mine from North Carolina said he had a friend that used lemon juice. I had half a bottle of FungiNail lefty so I filled the bottle with lemon juice. When that ran out I just refilled the bottle with lemon juice. Now, all I use is lemon juice....VERY cheap, and seems to do better than anything else, although it's just a little better.



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Disclaimer is not a medical site and not intended to take the place of a qualified doctor. Information contained here is simply the personal experiences of those who have had to treat nail fungus and come with no guarantees. Use at your own risk, but more importantly, consult your dermatologist / doctor before trying anything mentioned on this site.