How To Use Cuticle Oil? ( Recipe + Myth Busted )

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This is the complete guide on How To Use Cuticle Oil?

Did you know that your cuticles are the first thing that people see when they look at your hand and feet? Whenever you present your hands to someone, they look at your cuticles. This is why you need to care for them.  

How To Use Cuticle Oil

Cuticle oil is often used by women and men to keep nails healthy and its unique composition makes it an excellent moisturizer. It also has the ability to improve the appearance of the cuticles. 

However, it may be difficult to choose the right cuticle oil, especially if you have never used it before. Here is a guide to help you when using cuticle oil.

What is a cuticle?

The cuticle is a very thin layer of skin that sits at the base of your nail. It’s connected to the root (the pink part) of the fingernail which runs underneath your nail. 


The cuticle should be stuck firmly to this root so it forms an effective seal against germs, but often they will become unglued for various reasons.

What is cuticle oil and why do you need it?

Cuticle oil, like the name suggests, is a type of oil that you use on your cuticles. It’s important to moisturize them because they act as a barrier against germs. 

Moisturizing helps keep your nails healthy by keeping bacteria out and making nails less brittle (weakened/brittle nails are more prone to breaking).

What is cuticle oil

It’s common for the skin around your nails to be dry, so cuticle oil is definitely recommended. 

The oil acts as a seal by putting moisture back into the skin around your nail. It also helps push back cuticles so the surrounding skin doesn’t get in the way of your manicure (yes, it can be in the way even if you don’t have visible cuticles).

Benefits of using cuticle oil

  • Prevents dry and brittle nails.
  • Eliminates the appearance of ridges and improves shine.
  • Helps to improve elasticity and flexibility in your nails.
  • Makes your polished manicure last longer.
  • May strengthen weak, thin nails.
  • May prevent nail discoloration caused by fungus or other infections.

Cuticle oil can help hydrate your fingertips allowing you to have softer nails that are less likely to experience breakage or chipping during everyday activities. Because of this reason, many people also use cuticle oil as a way to strengthen their fingernails. 

How to use cuticle oil?

1. Massage a small amount of cuticle oil into the cuticles and around the nail bed.

2. Rub it in well for 15 seconds, then wipe away any excess with a tissue or cloth.

3. Let it air dry for a few minutes before going to bed.

4. Do not use on nails immediately after applying polish, as this will create smudging!

5. Apply every night before you go to bed or at least twice a day if you can’t do it at night.

If you’re in hurry then check the below video:

Step #1: After washing your hands, gently apply oil on cuticles. You can also apply it to dry areas around your nails after soaking. 

Step #2: Follow up by massaging the oil into your nails and skin with a light touch, which stimulates blood circulation.

Step #3: Finally, lightly wipe off any excess oil with a cotton ball or tissue. Just remember you are not supposed to put oil on broken skin so be careful!

If you have time in the morning, apply some cuticle oil before applying nail polish! It keeps skin moisturized while adding shine to your nails.

After moisturizing cuticles with oils, lotions, creams or salve help nourish cuticles, massage some on the nail surface by gently pushing each ridge of nail down toward the base of the finger with the thumb while massaging in a circular motion. 

What are the ingredients in cuticle oil?

There are a number of ingredients found in cuticle oils. The most common ingredients vary from brand to brand, though some have a consistent formula for their products. Ingredients that may be found include:

  • glycerine
  • jojoba oil
  • sweet almond oil
  • apricot kernel oil
  • aloe vera gel
  • vitamin E
  • grapeseed oil
  • olive oil

Note: Mineral Oil is sometimes used as an ingredient instead of plant oils/extracts because it doesn’t leave a greasy residue or have any scent.

However, most nail technicians claim that mineral oils aren’t good for the nails and only offer the appearance of longer nails (which is why we use cuticle oil in the first place).

Does cuticle oil really work? 

Cuticle oil itself is a pretty new thing. However, moisturizing the skin around your nails with any sort of cream or lotion works because it adds back moisture to the skin. 

A quick Google search for moisturizing cuticles results in millions of hits from people who swear by applying anything from plain oils to Vaseline to heavy hand creams.

This means that cuticle oil works because moisturizing the skin around your nails will keep them healthy.

How to choose the best cuticle oil for you?

While there are many cuticle oils on the market, not all of them are suitable for your nails. Since our hands are constantly exposed to water, chemicals, and other environmental factors, the oil you use should be appropriately powerful. 

The best way to determine your needs is by asking yourself these questions:  

#1 What type of oil do you currently use?

If you already have a go-to cuticle oil that works great for you then stick with it! However, if not continue on testing.

You may think all cuticle oils are one and the same but they are extremely different when it comes to their formulation. Your skin will absorb whatever you put on it so make sure to do your research on the ingredients.

As a general guideline, mineral oil or oils containing Vitamin E are considered the most gentle and safe to use. If you prefer organic products then jojoba and grape seed oils would be your best bet.

#2 What is your skin type?

If you have very dry hands then you should look for an oil with emollients such as shea butter and lanolin that help retain moisture in the skin. 

Oils containing petrolatums (Vaseline) such as olive, coconut, and Almond oils can also help soften rough skin. 

#3 What is your cuticle type?

If your cuticles tend to peel or split then jojoba or avocado oil will work best as they contain essential fatty acids that help strengthen the skin barrier.

If your nails tend to become dry and brittle then opt for argan, grapeseed, and sweet almond oil as these penetrate deep within the nail plate to nourish it from the inside out.

#4 How often do you use oil?

Once a day is sufficient enough if you’re just starting off with using any kind of oil regularly. After a few feel free to increase the frequency.

In case you’re looking for an affordable yet effective cuticle oil, I recommend the Sally Hansen™ Nourishing Cuticle Oil. It’s a bit thicker in consistency so it can also be used as a hand moisturizer and there is no need to wash it off! 

Where to purchase cuticle oil?

Cuticle oil can be purchased at beauty supply stores, drugstores, places like Ulta or Sephora. Beautylish also sells cuticle oils.

Which cuticle oil would you recommend?

At the moment, I personally like to use cuticle oils that contain grape seed oil and vitamin E. The one I love is from a brand called ‘Creative Nail Design’, you can get it at beauty supply stores for around $5-$8.

How often should you use cuticle oil?

That depends on a lot of factors. I look at it like this: if you’re going to use nail polish, you need a base coat and a topcoat in your routine. 

Using cuticle oil is just like adding another step to your routine- it’s something that needs to be done regularly. 

For some people, once a week works well, while others may need to use it more often than that for maximum benefits.

I personally recommend using the oil about three times per week (twice per day), but if you can push yourself to use it every day do so! It will really help with strengthening and growing ut your nails and cuticles.

Recipes for making your own DIY cuticle oils

Step #1: 10 drops of your favorite essential oil(  I like lavender)

Step #2: Oil base-grape seed oil is my preferred, but any will do. You can even use olive oil or vitamin e oil if you want.

Step #3: Mix well in a glass dropper bottle using a metal dropper -extra points if they have rollers ;). 

Step #4: Apply 2 coats on nails per day for best results! A great way to use up small amounts is to do what I call “nail oil caviar” -dip your brush into the bottle and then paint it on each nail.

If you’re in hurry then check the below video:

Before and After Using Cuticle Oil

The best way to tell if the oil has been absorbed is by checking the nails. 

If they’re looking smoother already, that means that you’re doing a good job of it! The nail plate should always be the last stop for any excess oils from hydration to shine. It’s important not only because it helps your nails look better, but also because healthier cuticles mean healthier tissue generally. 

There are a few different ways you can slather on your oils – some people prefer brushes or q-tips while others prefer pouring them straight onto their hands and smoothing them on with finger motions. 


Do I need to use cuticle oil?

Oh yes! Oil is a great way to keep your nails moisturized and hydrated, which will help the growth of stronger, healthier nails. 

If you want to give your nails that extra “oomph” then try using cuticle oil too!

It’s basically oil for the cuticles, containing vitamins and nutrients which moisturize and feed the nail bed from underneath.

Do you put cuticle oil on before or after nail polish?

Some people put cuticle oil on before nail polish to help the polish adhere to the nail, while others put it on after to help moisturize and condition the nails.

Try both ways and see which gives you the best results.

Do you leave cuticle oil on?

It all depends on your skin type.

The only time I would recommend just applying it once is if you have dry, cracked skin. Otherwise, cuticle oil should be removed to avoid staining nails.

Can you put cuticle oil on toenails?

Yes, tuck the toenail under the nails of your big feet after applying cuticle oil.

It’s always best to apply cuticle oils with an unpolished nail because that helps prevent oil from transferring to other surfaces or clothes.

Once on, drop some on your toenails and tuck them under the nails of your big feet for a moment before wiping off any excesses. 

If you have little bunions use moisturizer or lotion afterward for added benefits of softening dry skin around those spots.

Does cuticle oil help with nail fungus?

I don’t think it will work to cure nail fungus, but it can be helpful in the treatment of existing nail fungus.

The most important thing is to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, I would also try some tea tree oil which has natural antifungal properties. 

There are plenty of different methods for removing dead skin with what are often called “nail files” or “nail buffers.” 

Some people swear by using a Mason Pearson brush. As always it’s best to be careful and use common sense when caring for your nails – avoid chemical-laden artificial polishes and gels. 

Does cuticle oil make nail polish last longer?

Yes, cuticle oil can help your nail polish last longer.

The oils in cuticle oil help to condition your nails and keep them healthy. This makes your nails less likely to chip or peel, which can cause your nail polish to come off sooner. 

Cuticle oil can also help to seal in the color of your nail polish, making it look more vibrant and lasting longer.

Should you paint over cuticles?

In the western world, it’s common to paint over cuticles with a clear polish.

In Japan and Korea, people keep their natural nails with thinner cuticles and don’t apply nail polish over them. People in these countries usually use a special hand cream instead.

Ingrown nails are extremely rare in the eastern world compared to almost epidemic levels of occurrence found in many Western Countries.

In Japan and Korea, they have an old saying that “it’s better to leave your face as it is than wear makeup on top of it” because “a girl who covers her skin conceals what God gave.” In other words, let our natural beauty show!

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