How To Get Rid Of Thickening Toe Nails

While toenails are naturally thick, some people find that their toenails suddenly start growing a bit thicker than normal. When this happens, not only do the nails not look that great, but it can cause a ton of discomfort. In rare cases, the toenails may even end up smelling. If you have thickened toenails, we have no doubt you want to eradicate them as quickly as possible. So, let’s walk you through how to get rid of thickening toe nails. We’ve gathered this information and tons of foot care information here, in this website.

Are Thickened Toenails Permanent? 

In some cases, yes. 

A lot of thickened toenail issues are caused by a permanent change in the nail matrix. Once that damage has happened, it is pretty tricky to reverse. Luckily, thickened toenails tend to be very slow to develop. If you can learn how to manage them early on, then you have a chance of controlling the symptoms. While you may not be able to eradicate the thickened toenails completely, you may be able to manage them to the point where they pose very few issues.

Most thickened toenails will only be permanent if the nail matrix is damaged. If only parts of your toenail are growing thick (and not the toenail all the way down), then the damage may be reversible. We can’t promise you that it will be, but a lot of people have been able to manage their condition when their nails are in this condition. 

It may even be wise to look into how to make your nails stronger if you have thickened toenails. This is because while your nails may be growing thick, they are going to be much more brittle. That’s just adding to your issues. 

What Causes Thickened Toenails?

get rid of thick toenails

In order to tell you how to get rid of thickening toe nails, it’s worth giving you an overview of the causes of thickened toenails. This way, you’ll see why the problem is a lot tougher to treat than you may think.

Fungal Infection

Probably the number one cause of thickened toenails will be a fungal infection. In fact, a fungal infection is going to cause a whole lot more issues than just thickened toenails. It can completely change your life.

A lot of the time, the damage from a fungal infection is reversible, but you have to take action quickly. 

Nail Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an auto-immune condition that can cause you to break out with scaly skin, red rashes, etc. While it is rare, you can suffer from psoriasis on your toes. It is much more difficult to treat than when it appears on other parts of your body too. Luckily, heading to a doctor should help to keep your psoriasis under control. Assuming that the nail matrix hasn’t been permanently damaged, the thickening can probably be reversed.

Damaged Nail Matrix

Injuries to your nail matrix (the part of the nail growth system under your skin) can cause permanent thick toenails. You can never fix this damage. Although, you may be able to keep it under control with regular nail trimming and filing. 


As you get older, your nails will thicken up a bit. Probably not so much that is uncomfortable (unless there is an underlying cause), but bear this in mind. If you are getting older, your nails will be thicker. It is likely all your nails will be thick, not just one toe.

Ill-Fitting Shoes

People that wear tight-fitting shoes are much more prone to thickened toenails. This is because tight shoes will restrict blood circulation, and this will hamper nutrient flow to the nail.

Poor Nail Cutting Habits

Poor nail-cutting habits can cause a thickening of your nails. For example. inconsistent cutting, cutting the nails too low, or cutting in a way that causes the nail to crack. Sometimes, not cutting your nails enough can cause thickening problems. We recommend that you look into a good pair of the best nail clippers for thick nails here. It’ll help. 

Poor Circulation 

If you aren’t active enough, chances are you will have poor circulation (certain medications and health conditions can cause this too). 


Cutting your toenails too close to the cuticle, or poorly, can cause an infection known as paronychia. This can cause damage to the nail matrix, permanently thickening your nails. 

How To Get Rid of Thickening Toe Nails

get rid of thick toenails

Now you know the reasons behind thickened toenails, how do you deal with the problem? Well, you have a few options available to you. Unfortunately, they may not all work. However, you may be able to manage your toenails to a point where they are more ‘attractive’ and comfortable. 

Talk to a Doctor

get rid of thick toenails

Almost everything that can cause thickened toenails is a health issue. You cannot diagnose why your toenails are thickening just by looking at them. The one exception would probably be a fungal infection, and that is something that you should probably run by a doctor too.

Talk to your doctor as soon as your thickened toenails appear, and they may be able to stop any damage occurring. If your thickened toenails are in full swing, they may be able to come up with a treatment plan to stop them from getting worse.

In most cases, your doctor can prescribe you some medication that can deal with the underlying condition. They can also provide you with nail management tips. In rare cases, they may recommend surgery. However, this is only in a limited number of cases, and chances are that you won’t be dealing with one of those. Not if you managed to catch the thickened toenails early, at least.

Trim Your Nails Regularly

If you have thickened toenails, cut them regularly. Although, only the top part of the nail. Don’t mess about around the cuticle end (this could damage the nail matrix). Make sure that you cut them evenly too. As we said before, any damage to your toenails can cause toenail thickening. Infections, etc.

We recommend that you look at our Swissklip review if you are in the market for a good pair of toenail clippers, a secondary option could be the Green Bell Nail Clipper. It will make getting that perfect cut easier, and they can slice right through thickened toenails.

If you’re having issues cutting through your thickened toenails, then soak them in hot salt water beforehand. This can even help to clear up an infection. About 10 minutes in that saltwater bath should soften them up enough to cut through. If it hasn’t, give it another 10 minutes. This is why you do need to use a quality pair of toenail clippers. Cheap ones won’t cut through thick nails. 

Wear Looser Shoes

If you spend your days waltzing around with your feet stuffed into tight shoes, ditch them. They are thickening up your toenails. You may be able to reverse the damage if you pick up a pair of shoes a size bigger.

When you are at home, you may even want to take your shoes and socks off. Walk around and let your feet breathe. It could help. 

Walk Far More Often

Circulation is a major cause of thickened toenails. As we said, there are a few medical conditions that can cause poor circulation. Infections can cause poor circulation too. Your doctor can help with that. However, there are a few things that you can do to boost circulation. In fact, one thing; walk around more.

Walk around often (just 30 minutes of walking per day) and not only will you feel a lot healthier, but your nails will get proper circulation. This could thin them out a little bit. At the least, it will improve nail strength and health. 

Nail Filing 

If you have thickened nails, cutting does help. However, you can only cut down so far. In some cases, you’ll have to file on the top of your nail. This will need to be done every few weeks or so. Get a proper nail file for this.

In some cases, a combination of nail filing and nail trimming is all you can do to manage the thickened nail symptoms. 

Keep Your Feet Healthy 

If you have thickened toenails, the last thing you want is for them to get worse. So, you’ll want to do everything possible to avoid a toenail fungal infection. This means keeping your feet clean.

Every single day, you should wear clean socks. You shouldn’t walk barefoot in public spaces, and you will want to dry your feet completely whenever they get wet.

If you know somebody with a fungal infection, make sure that you don’t come into direct contact with them. The infection spreads.

Final Thoughts 

When it comes to how to get rid of thickening toe nails, things aren’t that easy. In some cases, you may never be able to eliminate the thickened toenails. Instead, it is down to proper management of the nails. This means regularly trimming them, keeping the nails clean, etc. If you are after a good pair of nail clippers to make the management of your nails easier, we suggest you check out our Swissklip Toenail Clipper reviews.


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