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How to get rid of nail ridges

Nail ridges can be frustrating if you have them not just because of what they look like but because they are more susceptible to snagging and breakage. It's tempting to buff them off or fill them in but what causes nail ridges in the first place?

What they look like

Ridges can be vertical or horizontal and can have one ridge or multiple ridges across the nail. You may have found that you will get the odd ridge now and then or it might be a constant feature of your nails.


Vertical ridges are quite common as we age as the nail starts to have difficulties retaining moisture. Ridges that appear vertical can also indicate health conditions like vitamin deficiency or rheumatoid arthritis.

Horizontal ridges are less common and can be an indication of disrupted growth due to illnesses associated with high fever, measles, diabetes or a zinc deficiency. If you have been fighting a cold you might have the odd horizontal ridge or if you have a prolonged illness the ridges might be reoccuring.


Keep your nails moisturised during the day and use a regular vitamin E oil on the cuticle and nail bed. Eat a healthy balanced diet rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. Be careful not to buff the ridges off as the ridges are the thinnest spot on the nail and buffing can cause the nail to split. Use a ridge filler as a base coat on your nails to keep them looking smooth. Every now and then go nail varnish free so the nail bed can breathe and you can keep on eye on your nail health.

If you have persistent nail ridges seek medical advice from a professional to ascertain if you have a vitamin deficiency or whether it's an indication of a more serious health condition.

Hope this article has helped!

Sarah x

Have you suffered from nail ridges in the past? What worked for you? Are there any other nail conditions you would like me to cover in my posts? Leave a comment below..

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