Yellow nails can be unsightly and embarrassing. If your nails are yellowing, you may wonder why they are yellow and how to fight them. Don't worry, we’ve got you covered.
This guide is designed to help you improve the way your nails look by helping you understand what causes yellow nails and how you can get rid of yellow nails. Read on to restore your nails to their natural healthy color.
What Causes Yellow Nails?
Many things can cause your nails to turn yellow, ranging from health issues to the products you use on your fingernails. It is essential to identify the cause of your yellow nails to know how to resolve the issue with nail treatments and tools.
Yellow Nail Syndrome
Yellow nail syndrome is an extremely rare disorder that involves malformations affecting the fingernails and toenails. It also causes abnormalities in the lungs and airways and swelling in different body parts. This is due to the accumulation of protein-rich fluid.
Yellow nail syndrome links to cancer and autoimmune diseases, which inhibit the drainage of lymph fluid and circulation. Seek medical attention if you believe you are suffering from yellow nail syndrome.
If the nails come into contact with a harmful fungus, this can cause them to appear yellow due to an onychomycosis fungal nail infection. If you get a nail fungus infection in your toenails, walking can be challenging. This kind of infection is highly contagious, so it will likely spread to your other nails if left untreated. Seek medical advice if you think you may have a nail fungus infection.
Overuse Of Nail Polish (Especially Darker Shades)
If you consistently use dark-colored nail polishes on your toenails and fingernails, this can cause yellowing. Certain nail polish colors are conducive to the yellowing of the nail, such as red, yellow, and orange. This discoloration is harmless but can be quite visually unappealing. This is one of the more common causes of yellow nails. Clear nail varnish can act as a barrier and help you avoid this issue. Don’t skip using a base coat along with some non-toxic nail polish to ensure your nails aren't affected by the polish color you are using and use a gentle nail polish remover to take off any polish residue afterward.
The nicotine in cigarettes can cause staining on your fingers, fingernails, and teeth when you smoke cigarettes. It’s also harmful to the fingernails, as they lose oxygen. Although quitting may be challenging, it could help you restore your nails to their natural color.
A vitamin deficiency can cause the yellowing of fingernails. Vitamin B boosts nail health, and if you aren’t consuming enough B vitamins, this can cause yellow nails. Vitamin B deficiency is quite rare, but something to consider if you notice yellowed nails.
How Can You Get Rid Of Yellow Nails?
There are plenty of methods you can use to fight off your yellow nails and restore your hands to a visually appealing aesthetic.
1) Apply Our Nail Strengthening Base Coat
Our nail strengthening base coat is designed to restore nails to health and encourage growth. It contains vitamin B7 and coffee extract to help strengthen nails. Apply to split, cracked, and broken nails to remedy the weaknesses. Apply to yellow nails to stimulate regrowth and eliminate the yellowed layer.
2) Never Skip Out On Using A Protective Base Coat
Skipping out on a base coat exposes the nail to pigments in the nail polish that can cause staining. By adding a protective layer between your fingernail and your nail polish, you can help prevent discoloration. This means that you can still wear dark nail polish without affecting the color of the nails.
3) Consume Foods Rich In Vitamin E Or Supplements
One way to prevent and stave yellowing in the nail is to consume foods rich in vitamin E or to purchase supplements that will provide you with a sufficient amount of vitamin E. Some foods that are rich in vitamin E include:
- Red bell peppers
- Peanuts and peanut butter
- Sunflower seeds
4) Soak Your Nails In Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is rich in vitamin C to nourish the nails, and the acidic nature of lemon juice can also have a bleaching effect on the nail to remove staining. To apply lemon juice to the nails, put the lemon juice into a small bowl, and soak your nails in the liquid for 5 minutes before washing the juice off with warm water. Repeat this process daily until the stains disappear.
5) Rub Your Nails With Fresh Orange Peel
Orange is rich in vitamin C, which is essential to help the body produce collagen. Collagen is necessary for the production of building block cells that make up the fingernails, teeth, and hair.
To use orange peel to reduce the yellowing of your nails, zest an orange using a grater or peeler, and take the shreds of zest. Then, rub them into your nails and nail beds in a circular motion. Once this is done, rinse off the residual orange peel using warm water.
6) Try Tea Tree Oil
It is important to note that the essential oil itself is too powerful to be applied directly to the skin. Instead, you must mix it with a carrier oil, like coconut oil, before being topically applied to the skin.
Tea tree oil has antiseptic and antifungal properties, which makes it helpful in fighting off fungal nail infections which can cause a yellowing of the nail. Please note, if you suspect a fungal infection, you should always seek medical advice before trying at-home remedies.
To apply tea tree oil, you can either mix it with a carrier oil and then apply it to the nails using a cotton swab, or add a couple of drops of tea tree oil to a basin of warm water and soak the nails for 10 minutes.
7) Try Oregano Oil
Oregano oil is antiviral and antiseptic and is also rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants can help the nails to revitalize and stop them from turning an aged yellow color. To apply this mixture to the nails, you can use the same techniques with tea tree oil, either applying it to the skin with a carrier oil or bathing the hands in water infused with oregano oil.
8) Use Denture Tablets
Denture tablets are designed to help brighten dentures for a pearly white smile, removing stains caused by food. The same goes for your nails, and you can use denture tablets to get rid of the yellow staining and discoloration on the nail’s surface.
Simply fill a small bowl with warm water, and then place your denture tablet into the water. Once it dissolves, you can put your hands into the water and soak for 10-15 minutes. This should reduce the discoloration of the nail.
9) Use A Baking Soda And Hydrogen Peroxide Mix
People often use baking soda and hydrogen peroxide for deep cleaning, and this mixture is even beneficial for getting rid of yellow nails. It is one of the more well-known remedies for yellow nails. Hydrogen peroxide is an effective oxidizer and a mild acid, and when mixed with the abrasive qualities of baking soda, it is perfect for eliminating stains.
To use baking soda and hydrogen peroxide to return your nails to a healthy color, you must first create a mixture of 1 part hydrogen peroxide and 3 parts baking soda. Then, using a cotton swab, apply the mixture to the nails and let sit for 3-5 minutes. Once you wash it off, you must moisturize thoroughly, as this mixture can dry out the skin.
10) Apply Teeth Whitening Toothpaste
Like denture tablets, teeth whitening toothpaste is designed to remove yellowing and discoloration in the teeth. So, whitening toothpaste may be helpful to remove the discoloration in your fingernails. To apply tooth whitening to the nails, simply use a nail brush or a cotton swab to apply the toothpaste to each fingernail, and let it sit for 10 minutes before washing it off with warm water and moisturizing the hands.
11) Use Baking Soda
Baking soda can create a highly alkaline environment. Since the fungus can only grow in acidic environments, this means that soaking your nails in baking soda can help you to reduce the risk of catching a fungal infection. Simply create a mixture of warm water and baking soda, and soak the nails for 10-15 minutes before rinsing and moisturizing.
12) Regularly Buff Your Nails Lightly
Using a gentle buffer can help you remove the top yellow layers of your nail more quickly. Be sure to use a soft buffing stick or pad, and not go overboard when buffing the nails. If you buff too much or too hard, you could strip and weaken your nails.
If you are suffering from yellow nails, it's a treatable scenario and not the end of the world. You can easily remove yellow discoloration caused by staining and treat fungal infections that make your nails yellow. These methods will help you to take action and fight off yellowing on the surface of the nail.
If you are suffering from a fungal nail infection, or suspect an underlying medical issue that may be causing your yellow nails, always seek medical help.