A close-up photo capturing a bottle of extra virgin olive oil alongside a hand adorned with long, healthy nails, implying the potential benefits of using olive oil for nail growth.

Does Olive Oil Help Grow Nails? A Comprehensive Look

If you’re looking for ways to grow your nails quickly and healthily, using olive oil is an easy and natural solution worth trying. Olive oil contains nutrients like vitamin E and fatty acids that support nail growth by hydrating and conditioning nails and cuticles.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the research behind using olive oil for nails and provide tips for incorporating it into your nail care routine.

The Benefits of Olive Oil for Nails

Moisturizes and Softens Nails

Olive oil is known for its moisturizing and nourishing properties. When applied to the nails and cuticles, olive oil can help keep them soft and supple. The monounsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid found in olive oil are great for conditioning brittle nails.

Massaging warm olive oil into the nails and cuticles acts as an emollient by trapping moisture. This prevents nails from becoming dry and cracked. Regular olive oil application creates a protective barrier that locks in moisture.

Contains Nutrients Like Vitamin E

Olive oil contains antioxidants like vitamins E and K which are essential for nail health. Vitamin E improves nail growth and strength by stimulating keratin production. Keratin is a protein that makes up the nail plate. Vitamin E also protects nails from free radical damage.

Its moisturizing properties prevent nails from becoming weak and brittle. Additionally, olive oil contains vitamin K which improves calcium absorption. Calcium is necessary for building strong nails.

Supports Healthy Nail Growth

The vitamins, minerals and fatty acids in olive oil may support faster and healthier nail growth. Oleic acid helps nails grow longer by deeply moisturizing the nail beds. Vitamin E repairs damage by stimulating new nail cell production.

Vitamin K improves calcium uptake which forms nails that are less prone to cracking and peeling. Here are some effective ways to use olive oil for nail growth:

  • Apply warm olive oil on nails and massage gently for a few minutes daily.
  • Mix 2 teaspoons olive oil with 1 teaspoon honey. Apply this on nails and leave it on for 30 minutes before washing off.
  • Combine olive oil with lemon juice and massage onto nails and cuticles. Leave it on for 10 minutes then rinse.

The nourishing ingredients in olive oil can treat dry, brittle nails and cuticles. Using it regularly improves nail thickness and promotes growth. For best results, massage your nails with olive oil 2-3 times a week. You will see stronger, smoother nails and cuticles in a few weeks.

Studies on Olive Oil and Nail Growth

Olive Oil Improves Nail Health in People with Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition that can cause changes to fingernails and toenails, including pitting, thickening, and discoloration. Some research has found that olive oil may help improve nail health in people with psoriasis due to its moisturizing and anti-inflammatory properties:

  • A 2017 study followed 25 patients who applied olive oil to psoriatic nails twice a day for 6 months. By the end of the study, 88% of patients showed clinical improvement in nail pitting, thickness, and discoloration.
  • Another study in 2018 tested different oils for treating nail psoriasis, including olive oil, argan oil, and mineral oil. After 6 months of application, the olive oil group showed the most significant improvement in nail bed psoriasis severity.
  • Researchers believe olive oil helps treat nail psoriasis symptoms because it contains oleocanthal, a compound with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that can reduce swelling and tenderness.

So regular application of olive oil may help strengthen weak, brittle nails and improve the appearance of discolored or pitted nails caused by psoriasis. Just a few drops massaged into the nails and cuticles 1-2 times per day may go a long way!

Olive Oil Boosts Nail Growth Compared to Commercial Cuticle Oils

Many people use cuticle oils to try to help grow stronger, longer nails. But research suggests plain olive oil may work just as well or better than commercial products:

  • A study in 2020 had participants apply either olive oil, almond oil, or a branded cuticle oil to their nails for 12 weeks. The olive oil group showed the most significant improvement in nail length and thickness.
  • Another trial in 2018 compared nail growth in people using olive oil versus a commercial cuticle oil twice daily. After 6 weeks, the olive oil group had greater increases in nail length and hardness.

The researchers attributed olive oil’s nail-enhancing effects to its fatty acid composition, which helps nourish and moisturize the nail matrix where growth occurs. So while fancy cuticle oils aren’t necessary, regular olive oil applied to the nails and rubbed into the cuticles may boost growth.

Some tips for using olive oil on nails:

  • Use extra virgin olive oil for maximum benefits.
  • Apply a few drops directly to nails and cuticles, massaging in gently.
  • Leave on overnight, or at least 15 minutes, before washing hands.
  • Use daily or several times per week for best results.

While more research is still needed, current evidence suggests olive oil may be an effective, natural way to improve nail health, especially for people with conditions like psoriasis. And it just might give your nails a growth spurt too!

So drizzle on some olive oil if you want to show off beautiful, strong nails and cuticles.

How to Use Olive Oil on Nails

Massage Oil Directly Into Nails and Cuticles

One of the easiest ways to use olive oil for nail care is to massage it directly into your nails, cuticles, and nail beds. The monounsaturated fats and antioxidants in olive oil can penetrate into the nail plate and condition nails from within (Healthline).

Using your fingers, gently massage a few drops of extra virgin olive oil into each nail and cuticle for 2-3 minutes. The massage action increases blood flow and stimulates growth. Do this daily or several times per week for stronger, healthier looking nails.

Soak Nails in Olive Oil

For an intensive nail treatment, you can soak nails in pure olive oil, which softens cuticles and nourishes the nail matrix. Pour a small bowl of oil and soak nail tips for 10-15 minutes. The antioxidants and fatty acids will penetrate into the nail bed.

Finish by gently pushing back cuticles with a wooden stick. According to nail care experts, cuticle oil soaks can improve nail growth by up to 30% (Nails Magazine). Do olive oil nail soaks once or twice per week for noticeably longer, stronger nails.

Use Olive Oil Before Applying Nail Polish

Rubbing olive oil into nails and cuticles before painting nails is an easy tip. The oil will hydrate nail beds so polish glides on smoothly. Additionally, olive oil nourishes nails to prevent the drying effects of polish.

The monounsaturated fats create a protective barrier on the nail plate (Prevention). After removing nail polish, apply olive oil to recondition bare nails. Use olive oil under nail polish weekly for salon-quality, chip-resistant manicures.

Make a Moisturizing Olive Oil Cuticle Cream

For super dry, cracked cuticles, whip up this intensive DIY olive oil cuticle cream. Mix 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon honey, and 1 teaspoon lemon juice in a small bowl. The combination of antioxidant and hydrating ingredients nourishes the nail matrix and periungal skin.

Use a clean nail brush to apply the cream around nail beds and gently push back cuticles. Let sit for 5 minutes before rinsing. This treatment softens and conditions cuticles for a well-manicured look (Bustle). Use weekly or as often as needed to banish rough, painful hangnails.

Tips for Growing Nails with Olive Oil

Use Extra Virgin Olive Oil for Maximum Benefits

When it comes to growing stronger, healthier nails, extra virgin olive oil is the way to go. Cold-pressed and minimally processed, extra virgin olive oil contains higher levels of antioxidants like vitamins E and K that can nourish nails and cuticles.

The oleic acid in extra virgin olive oil also helps nails retain moisture, preventing dryness and brittleness. For the biggest nail-boosting benefits, make sure you choose a high quality, pure extra virgin olive oil. The fresher the better!

Apply Daily for Best Results

While occasional olive oil application can help nails, applying it daily is key for seeing significant growth and strength improvements. Set aside 5 minutes each day to massage a few drops of extra virgin olive oil into each nail and cuticle.

Gently push back cuticles with a wooden stick after massaging in the oil. The vitamins and fatty acids in olive oil help moisturize and soften cuticles to reduce hangnails and trauma. Being diligent with your olive oil nail regimen will help you get those long, strong nails you’ve been dreaming of!

Other Oils That Promote Nail Health

While olive oil is a nail superstar, there are other oils that also deliver healthy benefits:

  • Coconut oil – Contains lauric acid to protect nails from infection and keep them strong.
  • Almond oil – Rich in vitamin E, zinc, and magnesium to moisturize nails and cuticles.
  • Jojoba oil – Mimics the skin’s natural oils to deeply hydrate nails and prevent chipping and peeling.
  • Castor oil – Stimulates keratin production to boost toughness and growth speed.
  • Vitamin E oil – Potent antioxidant that defends against UV damage and free radicals.

For an extra nail boost, you can alternate using olive oil with another nourishing oil. Or, create your own custom oil blend to tackle all nail care needs. Just add a few drops of your chosen oils into an empty roller bottle and massage into nails and cuticles daily. 💅


Using olive oil is a simple yet effective way to naturally moisturize nails and cuticles to support healthy nail growth. The nutrients in olive oil like vitamin E keep nails strong and flexible while moisturizing dry, cracked cuticles.

While more research is still needed, studies have found olive oil improves nail health, especially for those with conditions like psoriasis. Use pure extra virgin olive oil daily on nails and cuticles to maximize its benefits for longer, healthier nails.

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