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What Causes Dark Spots on Toenails and How to Get Rid of it?

Every person desires beautiful nails, which you can flaunt it to others. But with the problem of onychomycosis, also termed nail fungus, the nails becomes dark and flaky, which looks quite ugly. Simply said, dark spots on toenails can be a concern, hence it is important to know the causes of dark spots on toenails and ways to get rid of it. There are different types of nail fungus, which includes yeast and a mold. This yeast or mold eventually grows and causes the situations to worsen, as one will experience a more intensified dark color on the toe.

Here are some conditions when you can notice dark spots on toenails.

  • A person will have dark or black toenails, when blood or any other fluid gets accumulated beneath the nail. This leads to a change in color.
  • Another reason which can lead to change of color to a darker shade of black is any injury.
  • Your toenails also changes colors, when there is a growth of any fungus on the toenails.

The procedure of recovery is pretty slow but for simple cases, you can try some home remedies to get rid of the problem. However, if problem persists or appears to worsen, medical attention may be required.

What Causes Dark Spots on Toe Nails?

What Causes Dark Spots on Toe Nails?

Talking of the prominent causes of dark spots on toenails, there are certain factors, which can result in this condition. Some of the common causes of dark spots on toe nails include

  • Trauma Injury: One of the most important cause of dark spots on toenails is injury or trauma to the toes. The prime cause behind this is that, the blood which runs under the body tissues collects at one place, causing dark toenails. In medical terms, this condition is known as subungual hematoma, which basically refers to the discoloration of the nails. There are some cases, in which the person not only experiences a dark spots on toenails, but also experiences severe pain.

Some of the most common situations, which can cause such nail injury, include playing sports, like soccer, hiking, jogging and many more. When a person wears athletics shoes, there is a little scope for movement, resulting in constant touch with the inner surface of the shoes. Sports people, especially athletes, who do not cut their nails, have to go through a lot of trouble, as the conditions, is more prominent with them.

In an injured toenail, along with discoloration of nails, the shape of the nail changes, gets lifted, making the nail look very ugly.

  • Nail Fungus: Another common cause of dark spots on toenails is the growth of any type of nail fungus. Equipment and devices used during the manicure and pedicure increase the chances of growth of fungus on toenails. The problem of nail fungus is also very common when a person walks barefoot in public areas. Such fungal infections can result in dark spots on toenails.
  • People who are suffering from the diabetes, can also experience a change of color or dark spots on toenails.

How to Get Rid of Dark Spots on Toenails?

People having dark spots on toenails, feel conscious about wearing open toed footwear. If the condition is painful, it can also make a person feel un-easy. If there is pain or other symptoms, it is necessary to seek medical treatment to prevent the situation from getting worse.

However, for most dark spots on toenails, without symptoms, home remedies can work well.

Here are some home remedies to get rid of dark toe nails:

  • Vinegar Soak: The quantity of acetic acid is pretty good in vinegar, which controls the problem of dark toenails. Mix some vinegar with water, and soak your feet in the diluted vinegar solution. After that, just dry the feet, and wipe it with a towel. Repeat this step twice or thrice to get rid of dark spots on toenails.
  • Baking Soda: Another effective remedy to get rid of dark spots on toe nails is by making use of baking soda. Add some baking soda in another bowl and mix some water in it, to make a dilute solution. After soaking the feet in vinegar solution, soak your feet in the baking soda solution. As baking soda is an effective anti-fungal, it does wonders to the problem of dark toenails, which are caused due to fungal infection.
  • Tea Tree Oil: The antimicrobial properties of tea tree oil, act as a perfect home remedy to get rid of dark spots on toenails. It is known as a wonder remedy to treat skin and hair problems. Put three-four drops of tea tree oil in a bowl, then adds sufficient water to it, then soak your feet in water for around twenty minutes, and you are good to go. This will help you to get rid of dark spots on toe nails.
  • Epsom Salt: It is another effective home remedy, which you can use to get rid of dark toenails and also the pain associated with it. Mix some amount of Epsom salt, around one-fourth of cup, with ten cups of lukewarm water. After that soak your feet, in the solution for around fifteen to twenty minutes. If this procedure is performed regularly, you can easily get rid of the problem of dark spots on toe nails and the pain.

So, if you wish to get rid of dark toe nails, then you should definitely try out these home remedies for dark spots on toe nails.


  1. American Academy of Dermatology Association. (n.d.). Subungual Hematoma: Diagnosis and Treatment. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/a-z/subungual-hematoma-treatment
  2. American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. (n.d.). Fungus Infections: Tinea Unguium. https://www.aocd.org/page/TineaUnguium
  3. Mayo Clinic. (2021). Nail Fungus. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/nail-fungus/symptoms-causes/syc-20353294

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:September 1, 2023

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