Q. Recently, after my first pedicure ever, I got fungus on both big toenails. Is there a good home remedy to try?
A. There are lots of home remedies, including dilute vinegar soaks, tea tree oil and vitamin E used topically. Anohter popular approach is Vicks VapoRub.
One reader reported, “I decided to try Vicks on my two big toes, which were so ugly and discolored I wouldn’t even wear sandals. What wonderful results! My right toe has almost completely cleared up and my left (which was worse) is clearing up also.
“My mother rubbed Vicks on my chest when I had colds as a child, but I never heard of any other benefits. Has anyone ever written a pamphlet on the ‘cures’ of Vicks Vaporub? I’d certainly like one.”
We wrote a pamphlet on Unique Uses for Vicks and collected home remedies for fungus in our Guide to Hair & Nail Care.
Not everyone with nail fungus benefits from Vicks. But even expensive prescription anti-fungal drugs don’t work in every case.
One other approach that people seem to really like is Listerine foot soaks. Check out this link to learn more!

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  1. jen

    How long did this take?

  2. sp

    An elderly friend and fungus in every fingernail. Somewhere I read that horsetail rush would be good for nail fungus. Equisetum is the plant equivalent of the cockroach, very old and very pesky. It got into our yard and we never could get it out. I had no directions so just took a wild guess. I picked a lot and stuffed as much as I could into a quart jar and filled the jar with water. I let it soak for a couple of weeks and then took it to her. She soaked her fingers in it twice a day for 10-15 minutes. It took a couple of months, but the fungus disappeared. Her nails grew in normally.

  3. PS

    Vick VaporRub every night on infected toes. Takes a long time but it works great!!

  4. lily

    I also developed toenail fungus after my first (and only) pedicure. I had never experienced that before and did not know what it was until my annual doctor appt. I did not treat it and it lasted about 8 months.
    The spa that I went to was extremely clean and the staff professional. What should I be looking for in a pedicure to ensure this will not happen again?

  5. Kathy

    Thanks for this tip. I will try it. Vicks didn’t work for me, I gave that and vinegar 6 months. It helped but didn’t cure. I will certainly try this one, thanks.

  6. lm

    I tried the Listerine/vinegar soak for months. Finally the podiatrist prescribed Fungasil and it is working well – though it takes months and months for the nails to grow out.

  7. V. P

    My husband developed a nail fungus on his big toe, & after reading about the Vicks treatment in your column, & after applying it once daily for about 1 1/2 months, the fungus went away, & my husband became a believer!

  8. Sunny F.

    After trying perscription solutions without success I tried (after reading about it on this site) Vicks and have had great success. Thank you.

  9. KV

    I had great results treating toe nail fungus with clear (de-colored) iodine. I tried it after reading a tip in a People’s Pharmacy column. I swabbed it on the affected nail twice a day with a cotton swab, and let it dry. It started to improve almost immediately. I used it for several months until the fungus was gone. I had tried the prescribed medicine, but it didn’t work completely and had side effects. The iodine worked great. They sell it without a prescription, but behind the counter at the pharmacy, and it is inexpensive. Clear iodine is recommended because the regular might stain the nails. Good luck!

  10. mfh

    I soaked my feet in Listerine nightly for about 20 minutes over a two week period of time. I just bought a bottle at Walmart, their brand, huge bottle and used it a few times and then replaced it. Fungus gone.

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