What is a Nail Brush?

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

A nail brush is a small, rectangular brush that is intended for use on the fingernails. Nail brushes are usually made with short, strong bristles that can slough away dirt that has collected on the nails, around the nail bed, and underneath the fingernails. Nail brushes can be used daily by people who simply want to keep their hands looking as neat as possible. However, they are particularly useful for those who happen to dirty their hands on their job or while working on crafts or hobbies.

A nail brush is a small, rectangular brush used to clean fingernails.
A nail brush is a small, rectangular brush used to clean fingernails.

Nail brushes can be used to help remove stains from the skin. They can be especially useful for people who work on car engines. Painters and gardeners can also use nail brushes to help clean their fingernails after finishing their work. In order to remove stubborn stains or dirt from the skin, it is best to also use soap when scrubbing the nail beds with a nail brush. Soap can help to draw the dirt out of the skin.

Because using a nail brush can dry out a person's skin, they should moisturize their hands before using one.
Because using a nail brush can dry out a person's skin, they should moisturize their hands before using one.

There are a number of creams and soaps that are formulated specifically to remove dirt and stains from the skin. It is helpful to use these products if the hands become particularly dirty. Using these along with a nail brush should remove most, if not all, of the stains and dirt from the skin. Be sure to also use warm water which will soften the skin and allow for more thorough cleaning.

Nail brushes are particularly useful for those who dirty their hands while working or while doing crafts or hobbies.
Nail brushes are particularly useful for those who dirty their hands while working or while doing crafts or hobbies.

One of the drawbacks of using a nail brush is that it can leave the skin rather dry. Scrubbing the skin around and just under the nails with the firm bristles of a nail brush can remove moisture and natural oils from the skin. In order to avoid dry and cracked skin, it is good to use a hand moisturizer or a hand salve once the skin and nails have been cleaned. It is especially important to use some kind of emollient if the nails are scrubbed on a daily basis.

In order to treat very dirty hands, try using a moisturizer or salve before using a nail brush. First, wash the hands thoroughly with soap and hot water. Then apply an emollient. Once it has been absorbed by the skin, begin cleaning the fingertips with soap and a nail brush. The emollient will help to soften any dirt and grime that has become embedded in the skin, allowing for an easier cleaning process.

Before using a nail brush, a person should thoroughly wash their hands with soap and warm water.
Before using a nail brush, a person should thoroughly wash their hands with soap and warm water.
Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

In addition to her work as a freelance writer for wiseGEEK, Diane is the executive editor of Black Lawrence Press, an independent publishing company based in upstate New York. She has also edited several anthologies, the e-newsletter Sapling, and The Adirondack Review. Diane has a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and an M.A. from Brooklyn College.

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Discussion Comments

Acracadabra

This might sound a bit obvious but don't forget to disinfect your nail brush from time to time. This is especially important if you share it with other people. Even a good rinsing will improve the job it does on your nails the next time.

CaithnessCC

These days I hardly see nail brushes in shops, but when I was a kid everybody seemed to have one by the kitchen sink. I have fond memories of my mother scrubbing my little fingers with one after we'd made pastry!

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