What does toenail fungus look like?

Question of the day #askthefootpainreliefexpert 

what does toenail fungus look like

What does toenail fungus look like?

One of the most common questions i get asked as a Foot Health Practitioner is what does toenail fungus look like and how did i get toenail fungus in the first place.

Onychomychosis – Fungus of the nails

Is a bacterial infection that originated in our nail beds and you can get fungal toe and finger nails

Your Toes With Fungus Will Look

what does toenail fungus look like

  • Nails become very thick especially on the nail tips
  • Discoloured in appearance
    (White lines and spots)
    (Black/ Brown Lines and spots)
    (Large white patches)
  • Toenails become flaky and heavily calloused
  • White stuff under the toenails
  • Ridged and growth is upwards rather then outwards

Risk factors

  • Toenails become very thick and hard to cut with regular clippers
  • Thickness of nails may cause pressure and pain on your nail bed
  • A Foul Odour or Smell is caused by the bacteriatoenails smells like cheese
  • Toenail Fungus can spread to other toenails
  • Toenail may fall off from soft mushy dead fungus growth
  • Further infections to the skin and blood supply

Diabetics should seek immediate advice from a Foot Health Professional or Doctor to prevent infections to the foot.


The causative pathogens of onychomycosis are all in the fungus kingdom and include dermatophytes, Candida (yeasts), and nondermatophytic molds.

Dermatophytes are the fungi most commonly responsible for onychomycosis in the temperate western countries; while Candida and nondermatophytic molds are more frequently involved in the tropics and subtropics with a hot and humid climate. Resource wikipedia

The 3 most common reason for toenail fungus i believe are:

  1. Poor foot wear that is made of plastics or non breathable material
  2. Sweaty feet and athletes foot infections
  3. Nail Varnish


It is possible to have a microscopic biopsy using scrapping of your toenails but a visual diagnoses is the most common.

And this is what i do.

Also to be honest if your toenail shows the signs and symptoms as listed above i would say you most likely one of the 10% of the population that have toenail fungus.

Photos of Toenail Fungus

  1. white stuff under my toenail
    The nail appears to have white/ yellow stains on the nail. Often the colour starts at the base of the nail upwards.


what does toenail fungus look like
The Nail may split in large sections and a new soft flaky nail in found growing underneath


white stuff under toenail
Toenails become thick and hard to cut
what does toenail fungus look like
Yellow patches appear as the fungus on the nail bed gets worse, the nail will soon split and begin to SMELL.

What now?

So you have toenail fungus infection what can you do today to solve and treat the problem.

I would suggest you take immediate action and this is my personal treatment options i give to my patients.

But I would always recommend you talk to a health professional if you have any long term illness or conditions such as diabetes.

Cure nail fungus naturally a topical solution such as the Amoils Nail Fungus Treatment.

I like this treatment option because it is non aggressive and contains a strong powerful mixture of natural ingredients that will penetrate deep in the toenail bed and kill off the fungus from the root.

As the toenail is treated your nail may either fall off if the nail has lots of soft fungus underneath  it or you will notice as the new nail grows a pink healthy one coming from the cuticle.

You apply the oil 2 times a day and quickly the discolouration goes.

Other options to treat toenail fungus include using Vicks Vapour rub !

Yes apply to the toenails daily for 3 weeks and see a visible difference, the only problem this may cause the nail to lift off as it softens the bed quickly.

A new nail will grow if this happens.  Oh and it stinks of Viks!

Also if you just have a mild case of toenail fungus i like to try my patients on a bacterial cream like Daktarin or Mycota these are for Athletes foot conditions.

Ignore the instructions as such! rub the cream into the nails and around the skin of the toe. Max 10 days.

This is a good treatment when you have toenail fungus caused by acrylic nails and toenail varnish.

It draws out the discolouration fast.

Always read the instructions before applying.

Final point

Also make sure when you are treating the toenail fungus in your nails to trim and keep the nails short.

This will help cut out and encourage the nails to grow quicker.

Also repetition!

Please don’t expect miracles fungus takes many months to grow before you start to notice it on your nails.

It may take weeks and even months to totally heal so be patient.

So choose a product and plan that is easy to apply to your daily routine and one that will not only kill the fungus but protect you from the fungus returning.

I hope you have found this information helpful but if you have further questions or comments leave them below

or come to our Facebook page and #askthefootpainreliefexpert
a question and i will answer with free advice.

Further reading

Wikipedia Onychmycosis What does toenail fungus look like

Quick nail Fungus Treatment you can do today

Read more about my personal recommended treatment Amoils Nail Fungus 


Read This Gehwol Nail and Skin Cream Review


Gehwol Nail and Skin Cream Review…. Whats best the cream or the oil.


I have been using Gehwol products since 2001 on my patients and by far their range of foot creams and sprays really are the best on the market for foot problems.

My 4 favourite gehwol products i would 100% recommend include:

Gehwol Blue
For every day footcare, diabetes,dry skin and prevents bacteria infections

Gehwol Nail & Skin Oil/Cream
To cure fungal infections of the nail and skin

Gehwol Deodorant
Perfect to cure hot sweaty smelly Feet

Gehwol Red
This cream is used on cold feet it naturally increases the circulation and warmth to the feet.

How to get the best results when treating  toenail fungus.

If you are suffering from the early stages of toenail fungus then i would recommend either product to you.

But i believe the cream works faster.

The reason for this is because the cream is rubbed into the nail and skin around the toe and penetrates well into the toe ,

where the oil is dropped onto and around the toenails and soaks into the skin rather then being rubbed in.

How long will it take for the fungus to improve?

Im afraid i just can’t tell you this, every case is different,

But i will say within a month of using a toenail fungus product you will begin to see an improvement,

the nail will become pinker and healthier looking, and loose dry callus around the nail will have fallen off and the toenail will be easier to cut.

Daily application is required for the long haul when treating fungus.

Twice a day without fail is required.

1 Important factor to success

Foot hygiene is so important when treating bacterial fungal infections.

Washing your feet , changing your socks, throwing away old many shoes which contain bacteria.

If you suffer from athletes foot which is one of the causes of fungus treat the infection.

Simple daily foot care will speed up the healing process.

(2 Pack) - Gehwol - Nail & Skin Cream | 15ml | 2 PACK BUNDLE

Binding Personal Care
Brand Gehwol
EAN 6014714970263
Label Gehwol
List Price £13.99
Manufacturer Gehwol
MPN GEH-620301-2Pack
Package Quantity 1
Part Number GEH-620301-2Pack
Product Group Health and Beauty
Publisher Gehwol
Studio Gehwol
Title (2 Pack) - Gehwol - Nail & Skin Cream | 15ml | 2 PACK BUNDLE
Price Disclaimer

Leave me a comment or ask a question below or go over to the foot pain relief expert Facebook page and DM me or leave a question if you would like advice for your feet.

Gehwol nail and skin cream review post


What Is The Best Treatment For Fungus Nails Guide


Best Treatment For Fungus Nails: Prevention is the Best Cure

I get asked daily what is the best treatment for fungus nails  and my answer is always the same prevention.

Fungus nails are difficult to treat.

Even after treatment, the condition often returns.

Prevention involves keeping your feet dry and clean, cutting your nails regularly, washing your hands after possible contact with fungus and avoiding pedicures and manicures.

It is also best to avoid injuring your nails and to obtain sufficient sleep and exercise to keep your immune system healthy.

Fungi thrive in moist conditions. If your feet are sweaty, keep them dry. Change socks regularly or wear open toed shoes.

If you’re an athlete, take time to dry your feet and change socks during breaks in long competitions.

Fungus nails typically return, even after treatment with prescription medications.

Fungus nails – what are they?

Fungus nails are painful, thickened and deformed toenails caused by fungal infections.

The infection causes the nail to decay, leading to thickening.

Fungi are actually primitive vegetables that live in the body, in the air, on plants, in water and in soil.

Approximately 50% are harmful. As some fungi can reproduce while airborne, you might inhale them or they may land on your skin.

Fungus nails and fungal infections occur more frequently when you have taken antibiotics or have a weakened immune system.

Fungus nails – what causes it?

Fungal infections cause fungus nails.

Our body’s host a multitude of bacteria and fungi including the fungi that causes fungal nail.

The group of fungi most commonly responsible for toenail fungus is called dermatophytes.

Under certain conditions, these fungi can multiply quickly, leading to infection. Fungi thrive in moist, warm areas of the body.

Fungus nails is a contagious infection spread by direct contact (touching) or by indirect contact through towels, floors and shoes.

Yeasts and molds also cause Fungus nails.

Fungus nails may be a hidden presence on fingernails and toenails beneath a layer of polish.

If you have manicures or pedicures, bring your own instruments. Footbaths for pedicures are often a stew of bacteria and other organisms.

As luxurious as they feel, it’s best to pass on them. Fungus nails are difficult to treat and often reoccur – avoid them if possible by not placing your feet in warm water used by the public.

Fungus in nails

what are the symptoms?

Fungus nails often begin as a white or yellow spot under the tip of your toenail.

The spreading infection causes your nail to thicken and become ‘yellowish-brown.’

The edges of your nail may begin to crumble and the nails are unattractive and often become painful. Sometimes a foul odor is present.

How to avoid nail fungus

Fungus toenails Cure –common sense prevention methods and early treatments

Treatment of fungus nails at home involves a number of common sense actions.
Fungus can only grow in warm, moist conditions. If you take away these conditions, fungi have a difficult time multiplying.

Over the counter medications can be helpful, but oral medications prescribed by GPs are extremely hard on the liver and heart.

The best treatment is prevention.

•Wear synthetic socks (rather than cotton or wool) and change them whenever they become damp (at least twice daily)

•Wash feet every day and dry them completely prior to putting on socks and shoes

•Use a separate towel for your feet – do not use the same towel on the rest of your body or share with anyone else

•Take off your shoes whenever possible.

•Wear sandals when possible

•Use antifungal powder on your feet and inside your shoes

•Use antiperspirant powder on your feet

•Avoid wearing toenail polish

Related post: 7 Foot Health Ritals To Prevent Toenail Fungus

Best Treatment for Fungus Nails – home treatments and over the counter remedies

Treating fungus nails is very difficult.

If you have diabetes or a weakened immune system, see your doctor immediately.

You can treat fungus nails (toenail fungus) with over the counter antifungal powders, sprays, liquids and creams. However, over the counter medications are not very effective.

Prescription medications are very hard on the liver and heart. Sometimes surgery becomes the only option.

It takes a year for the big toe-nail to grow back into place. A surprising remedy that often works is using Vicks VapoRub, rubbing it deeply into, on and around the toenail.

The active ingredients are camphor, menthol and eucalyptus. You can also purchase fungal nail polishes containing fungicides.

Keep your feet dry and in the open air as much as possible to minimize conditions that cause and prolong fungus nails

What do i use on my patients?

Here is my top 5 best treatment for fungus nails that i have been using for the past 13 years on patients.

Im afraid theres not just one  “Super” Remedy that works for all Nail Fungus infections.


Toenail Fungus Myths You Need To Know about

Toenail fungus myths You Need To Know.

toenail fungus myths


What are the biggest toenail fungus myths out there!

I was asked by one of my subscribers what was the biggest myth i thought was out there about treating toenail fungus.

And i believe it is …Antibiotics for nail fungus

The problem with taking antibiotics to treat toenail fungus is that although they do work yes they do! but when you stop taking the antibiotics for the fungus the infection begins to return and before you know it the full blown toenail fungus infection is back again.

You will need to be taking antibiotics for toenail fungus for at least 6 months,

And thats a long time to be taking them and the damage they will do will be bad to your gut and kidneys.

So although some Doctors may recommend this treatment to you (the majority will not entertain the idea) Say NO!

I believe and know from treating toenail fungus infections from my patients feet is the way to cure the infection is by treating the nail bed.

So use a topical solution and i find that if you use a combination of two treatments like Amoils or Gehwol Nail Fungus Oil and Vicks Vaporub or Potassium Permanganate crystals that you can get rid of the fungus for good.

But remember to apply the 7 Foot Health Rituals so you prevent any reoccurrence when treating the toenails.

Read Related post here: 7 Foot Health Rituals You Must Do To Prevent Toenail Fungus


I hope you have found this post about toenail fungus myths helpful and sets you on track on choosing the best treatment for your nails.

Share on social media and Subscribe to our mailing list for treatment plans and leave a comment below if you need any personal help solving your fungal nails.


Quick Nail Fungus Treatment You Can Do Today


Quick Nail Fungus Treatment You Can Do Today And Get Results.

quick nail fungus treatment


Are you looking for a quick fix nail fungus treatment on your finger or toenails?, maybe you are going on holiday and want to get rid of your embarrassing  toe nail fungus.

Well hang on there because i have some quick nail fungus treatment options you can start at home today.

I am a Foot Health Practitioner and have been treating fungal toenails for the past 13 years and the one thing i can tell you is that fungal nails are very  stubborn very common and a real pain to cure.

Like warts and verruca, patience and repetition is necessary when treating the fungus and there is no such thing as a quick nail fungus treatment!

Im sorry but there really is not a 24 hour miracle cure,.

But knowing the warning signs of toe and finger nail fungus will ensure your nails remain healthy and fungus free.

What Does Nail Fungus Look Like?

The first signs of nail fungus on your toe or finger nails will begin as a white or yellow spot under the tip of your nail.

A ridge or split may occur with a white line along the damaged nail.
Nail fungus as it spreads causes the nail to thickened, dry and flaky.

As time goes on the nail will become yellowish-brown and the nail may begin to crumble and look heavily calloused and unattractive .

When the nails become rough and thickened this may cause some pain around the toe from pressure of the thicker infected nail.  Some nails may even give off a foul odour.

Prevention Is the Best Cure For Nail Fungus

I believe the best treatment for fungus nails is prevention.
As i have mentioned above curing nail fungus is very difficult
but not impossible!

When you have treated and repaired your nails back to a healthy looking condition don`t trust them!!!

Often the nails look great so you stop the treatment and within 3 months the fungi begins attacking your nail bed and before you know it the yellow fungus is back!

So  i would recommend you keep to a daily foot health ritual to prevent fungus returning.

Foot Pain Relief Expert Foot Health Rituals

  1. After showering each day make sure your feet and toes are totally dry before walking off and putting your socks on.
  2. Clean your feet everyday, a relaxing treatment is to soak your feet in a bowl of warm water with epsom salts for 10 minutes this will not only relax and distress you mentally the epsom salts are amazing for muscle repair and relieving cramps and aching muscles.
  3. Cut your toe and finger nails regularly. Splits or tears to the nails can be an entry point for the bacteria.
  4. Ladies! remove you nail varnish and allow your nails to breath. Wearing nail varnish suffocates the nails and is my #1 reason women get nail fungus. Im not saying don’t wear it but make sure you remove it and if possible have a few days off before reapplying.
  5. Change your socks daily. If you suffer from sweaty feet apply a foot deodoriser or powder for all day protection.
  6. At the gym or swimming pool wear flip flops in all the communal areas especially the showers!
  7. If you do have nail fungus do not share bath towels as you could spread the fungus to your partner!

The Biggest Nail Fungus Myth You Need To Know

Antibiotics are not a quick nail fungus treatment and is unlikely in my opinion to cure your nails of the dreaded fungus.

I meet so may patients who want to go on antibiotics to get rid of their nail fungus because they have read this works fast.

The minimum time frame you would need to be on antibiotics for nail fungus would be 6 months and over that period you could cause serious damage to your gut and kidneys.

So please don`t go down this route most foot health professional and general doctors would not recommend this course of treatment.

All the patients i have met who have tried this, the minute they stopped the antibiotics the nail fungus returns.

Want to get back your healthy nails?
Here are 3 Quick Nail Fungus Treatment ‘s You Can Start Doing TODAY!!!!!!

In my opinion the regular over the counter remedies for nail fungus are just not effective Curanail, Scholls, ClearZal….  

These are expensive and in effective and i would recommend you try these less expensive treatments which my patients benefit from.

1: Potassium Permengate Crystals

Potassium permanganate can act as an antiseptic. For example, dilute solutions are used to treat canker sores (ulcers), disinfectant for the hands and treatment for mild pompholyx, dermatitis, and fungal infections of the hands or feet. * wikipedia.

You can buy potassium permanganate for a few ££$$ £3.99 was the last tub 50g i purchased and it lasts for ages. It is available from most drug stores and as most things in life Amazon.

How to use Potassium Permanganate Crystals
When using Potassium Permanganate your feet will go a brownish colour! but this does wear off after a few days but try and tip the toes into the water so you only have minimal discolouration.

Add 1/2 teaspoon of PPC into a bowl of warm water, the water will go purple!.

Soak the nails for 10 minutes and dry with an OLD towel. Poor the water down a outside drain so you do not discolour your home or bath sinks.

2: Vicks Vaporub Rub

A surprising quick nail fungus treatment is Vicks Vaporub its ingredients include camphor, menthol, eucalyptus oil, cedar leaf oil, nutmeg oil, petrolatum, and thymol and turpentine oil, encourages natural healing of nail fungus.

Vicks themselves do not advertise this fact but several trials have been completed and results are proven.

How to use Vicks Vaporub on nails with  fungus

Apply to the effected nails daily, by rubbing a small amount of the Vicks on and around the nail trying to get some under the nail if possible (this is where the fungus is within the nail bed)

Make sure the nails are dry before applying.

Trim your nails, this encourages the nails to grow quicker. And the Fungus to go faster.

3: Anti-fungal Creams ( Daktarin- Lamasil- Mycota-Mycil- Canasten)

You probably have a tube of one of these creams hanging around the house.  Commonly used for athletes foot conditions but also contains anti fungal agents that will kill the fungi bacteria,

You will defiantly notice using a anti fungal cream the discolouration of the nails improving, the yellow or white patches can clear up pretty quick 10-14 days.

How to use an anti fungal cream on fungal nails.

Rub a little cream on and around the nail 1-2 times a day when dry.
If possible try and get under the tip of the nail as this is the root of the fungus.

How I treat fungal nails my treatment plans

As mentioned i wish there was a quick nail fungus treatment out there i could say to buy and be guaranteed that it will work and heal the fungus for good.

But unfortunately there isn’t one guaranteed product.

But, what i have found is using a combination of treatments speeds up the recovery time of nail fungus and stops it returning.

Related Post: My Recommended Treatment plans

I believe choosing two treatments and ensuring you start a daily foot health ritual will give you the fastest results.

For example…….

Apply Vicks Vaporub once a day for 14 days and then start over the next 14 days with an anti fungal cream and repeat for 6 weeks.

I think you need to allow 4-6  weeks to be honest to start seeing real changes to the nails especially toe nails.

Finger nails are always much quicker and within 2 weeks the nails discolouration will improve.

If you are treating toe nail fungus then i my preferred treatment plan is to
apply Daktarin Cream for 7 days and then Amoils Toe Nail Fungus Oil.

Amoils is an all natural treatment containing essential oils which have no harsh chemicals or additives and i use on my patients who suffer from :

Finger nail fungus
Toe nail fungus
Yeast Infections of the nails

I have found over the past few years natural remedies much more effective to cure foot conditions like plantar warts and fungal nails then over the counter chemical based treatments.

I think this is because our bodies respond to natural remedies and do not respond so well to pharmacy based drugs like antibiotics and anti fungicides.  Often by increasing our vitamins and minerals we can heal so much faster naturally.

I hope you have found this post helpful and has given you some new ideas and possible treatment options to treat you nail fungus.

If you have a question please leave me a comment below and i will be happy to respond,

And if you have found this post beneficial i would be grateful if you would share it on your social media sites.


Quick Nail Fungus Treatment Resources

My treatment plans blog post

My preferred toenail fungus oil for my patients Amoils Natural toenail fungus Treatment

[tweetthis]How to get healthy nail fungus free nails 3 easy tips that really work.[/tweetthis]