DIY Cuticle Oil With Essential Oils to Strengthen Nails & Dry Cuticles

Country Hill Cottage
by Country Hill Cottage

Strengthen and moisturise your nails and cuticles with a nourishing DIY cuticle oil with essential oils. This natural nail care recipe is an excellent homemade remedy to soften dry cuticles, to care for cracked, brittle nails and to promote healthy nail growth. Plus, you only need 5 minutes to make this easy homemade cuticle and nail serum.

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DIY Cuticle Oil with Essential Oils – What are the benefits of using cuticle oil?

A cuticle oil is used to condition, heal and protect the cuticles, nails and the skin around the nails. It provides moisturization and nourishment for the nails. A cuticle serum is a good dry cuticle remedy and an important step in nail care, and you can easily make your own at home.

What does a cuticle oil do?

The formula of this easy cuticle oil recipe is perfect for revitalising nails and torn cuticles. This homemade clean beauty product penetrates deeply, softening cuticles and promoting strong, flexible nails. The pure, natural ingredients are vegan and suitable for sensitive skin – no harsh or harmful chemicals to be found here.

What causes dry cuticles and split nails?

We use our hands every day to perform countless tasks. Exposure to water, soap, dry air, cold, nail polish remover, and stress can lead to dryness, damaged cuticles and weak, brittle nails. My personal pet peeve? Washing dishes.

Vitamin deficiency can be another cause for extremely dry cuticles and rigid nails. This internal problem is something that this homemade beauty recipe won’t be able to repair. You should speak with a physician or medical caregiver to find out what nutrients might be missing from your diet.

For more hand and nail care recipes, have a look at my  homemade hand scrub and  clay hand mask. And if your looking for a moisturising soap recipe, then check out this  cold process soap for dry skin.

What ingredients do I need to make DIY cuticle oil?

This homemade cuticle oil is a powerhouse of different oils and vitamins that nourish, moisturise and protect nails and cuticles from dryness and cracking. So, what is the best oil for dry cuticles? Rather than using a single carrier oil as a base for this DIY cuticle serum, I decided to use a selection of different oils and ingredients that act together to provide the best health benefits for your nails.

However, you can formulate your own cuticle balm with just one or two of the oils listed below. Just maintain a ratio of 6 tsp / 30 ml carrier oil to 30 drops essential oils.

Apricot kernel oil

Apricot kernel oil is a good source of fatty acids and vitamins A and E. As an effective emollient, apricot kernel oil has excellent restorative properties that help to soothe and rehydrate dry cuticles.

Safflower oil

Safflower oil keeps the skin hydrated, reduces the appearance of rough cuticles and strengthens the elasticity of your nails. Because of its antioxidant characteristics, safflower oil is also an effective ingredient to fight signs of premature skin ageing.

Sunflower seed oil

Sunflower seed oil has a high content of vitamins A, C, D, and E, as well as linoleic acid. The oil has soothing and emollient properties that help to retain moisture, keeping the skin hydrated for a longer period, which is especially beneficial for the sensitive areas around the nail plate.

Rice barn oil

Rice barn oil is made up of nourishing fatty acids, vitamin E and squalene. This light-weight oil doesn’t feel oily on the skin and absorbs quickly. It’s an excellent skin and nail nourishment, useful on dry, damaged cuticles.

Wheat germ oil

Wheat germ oil has a nourishing mixture of vitamins A, B and E, folic acid, and trace minerals that are essential nutrients for cell regeneration, nail growth, and a remedy for psoriasis.

Horsetail extract

The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits of  horsetail extract, a herbal concentrate made from horsetail grass, can relief inflamed, injured and bleeding cuticles, while it’s silica and minerals also strengthen thin nails and promote nail growth.

Because horsetail extract can be difficult to source, it can be substituted with more apricot kernel oil.

Vitamin E oil (tocopherol)

Vitamin E oil is one of the best ingredients to nourish, hydrate, and rejuvenate your cuticles and nails. It’s also a natural antioxidant and a wonderful treatment for dryness, proven to soften skin and reduce the appearance of hangnails and chapped cuticles.

The best essential oils to use for DIY cuticle oil

Now, can we improve the cuticle oil formula with essential oils? The short answer: Absolutely! Essential oils are useful to keep your nails and cuticles strong and healthy. Below I have put together a list of essential oils that are great additives for a DIY cuticle oil and nail-strengthening serum.

I recommend choosing either a single oil or a combination of two to three essential oils to enhance the moisturising properties of this repairing nail and cuticle serum. I usually use 15 drops tea tree, 7 drops lavender and 7 drops lemon oil. You can easily swap these essential oils according to your personal needs.

Tea tree essential oil

Tea tree essential oil has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties, making it one of the best essential oils for natural nail care. This versatile oil can protect the cuticles from infection and alleviate several skin issues, from red, inflamed cuticles to nail fungus.

Lemon essential oil

Lemon essential oil’s anti-bacterial characteristics can sanitise torn cuticles and pesky hangnails. Over time, lemon oil will also brighten yellow nails and make them look shiny.

Lavender essential oil

Lavender essential oil restores moistures and reduces thinning and breakage, while also being antibacterial and anti-infectious.

Myrrh essential oil

Myrrh essential oils are deeply moisturising, which helps to increase nail resilience and flexibility. This oil is also said to be the best essential oil for nail growth.

Frankincense essential oil

Frankincense essential oil is an excellent oil to strengthen weak nails, stimulate healthy nail growth and fights off nail fungus.

German chamomile essential oil

German chamomile is a good choice to soothe an inflamed nail bed. For severely inflamed cuticles, use only 3 drops of each tea tree and chamomile oil in the recipe.

Geranium essential oil

Geranium essential oil is another deeply hydrating essential oil that can protect the delicate skin around your nails and help to prevent cuticle peeling.

Wintergreen essential oil

To numb painful nails, add 3 drops  wintergreen essential oil to the serum.

Package and store the DIY cuticle oil

I store the cuticle balm in a small  dropper bottle on my nightstand to use before I go to sleep and in 10 ml  roll-on bottles, which are incredibly useful to keep the cuticle oil in your purse and to apply on to go. I also find that these roll-on bottles are excellent and thoughtful natural skincare gifts for your gal friends.

Since sunlight deteriorates the therapeutic properties of essential oils, either store homemade cuticle oil in a dark place or fill into dark glass bottles (e.g.  cobalt or  amber bottles). To label the oil, download the printable cuticle balm labels at the end of the post.

How to apply the nail-strengthening DIY cuticle oil

First wash your hands and nails under running, warm water. With a dropper or roll-on bottle apply a small amount of the serum onto each cuticle. Then massage the oil gently into the cuticle and rub over the entire nail.

How often should I use a cuticle oil?

For the best result, use the nail cuticle oil daily. Apply the nourishing serum before bed, so the oil stays on overnight to hydrate and repair your nails and cuticles. Follow up with a hand cream or balm.

You can also use the nail oil as the last step of a manicure, and after removing nail polish to replenish the moisture that your skin was stripped off.

Can cuticle oil be applied over nail polish?

Yes, this homemade cuticle oil can be used over nail polish and acrylic nails.

How long does it take for DIY cuticle oil to work? When can I see results?

As with all-natural skin products, results may not be immediate but depend on the overall health of your nails and cuticles. If you’re suffering from dry cuticles, you will mostly like feel and see an improvement after a few applications. Nails that have become thin, weak and brittle after wearing acrylics over long periods of time can take several months to heal and regrow strong.

Cuticle oils to buy

No time to DIY? Girl, I got you covered. I have bought and tested the following cuticle and nail oil products and loved them a lot. Just note that the applicators aren’t always the best, so I transfer the oil into a dropper bottle to apply the cuticle oil – so much better!

 I also like this  nail strengthening cream from Onyx Professional.


DIY Cuticle Balm Recipe with Essential Oils

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Strengthen and moisturise your nails and cuticles with a nourishing DIY cuticle oil with essential oils. This natural nail care recipe is an excellent homemade remedy to soften dry cuticles, to care for cracked, brittle nails and to promote healthy nail growth.


5 minutes


5 minutes




DIY cuticle oil

Essential Oils

Packaging and gift giving


  1. Fill a dropper or roll-on bottle with the carrier oils, horsetail extract, and vitamin E oil.
  2. Add the essential oils, screw the lid on tightly and shake well to combine.


  • The amounts are enough for 1 2-oz / 30-ml dropper bottle or 10-ml roller bottles.
  • The oil has a shelf life of 6 months.

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 1 comment
  • Anne Anne on Mar 04, 2023

    Thank you for the recipies! I have been spending too much money

    Ordering pre-made cuticle and nail oils on-line. These sound great...

    I have several oils on hand!