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Is Vaseline Good For Your Nails? [Should You Be Using It Here?]

If you’re like most nail aficionados, you have a lot of nail-care products in your arsenal. From nourishing base coats to put on before your color coat, to cuticle oil, to files and clippers, there’s a lot on the market. But there’s one product that you may have to hand, but are not sure about using; Vaseline. Should you, is it safe or even beneficial? Here is what you need to know.

So, is Vaseline good for your nails? Vaseline is great for nails, helping to keep them strong and moisturized. It’s also great for hangnails and the areas around your nails. As such, you can regularly apply Vaseline just you would use cuticle oil or other nail product. In fact, it can compete with more expensive products at a much smaller price tag.

Vaseline, the most famous brand of petroleum jelly on the market, is something you should actually look to use. 

You can find it in almost any store. You’ll likely have it somewhere in your households already.

It’s just so versatile. And cost-effective too!

Let us now take a closer look at why you can, or should, look to apply it to your nails.

We’ll also look at how you should do so for optimal results.

So keep on reading.

This could transform the health of your nails and save you a lot of money in the process!

Why Is Vaseline Good For Your Nails?

Vaseline and other petroleum jellies act as a moisturizer, keeping the cuticles nourished and protected from the drying effects of external stimuli (such as weather and other products). This results in better, healthier nails.

If you’ve ever used Vaseline before, then you know that it has one major quality: it moisturizes. 

The thick, rich oil jelly is one of the best ways to add some moisture to dry skin and fast. 

For those with dry skin, it’s something you’re already very familiar with. 

And even those with oily skin will probably have considered it for chapped lips at one point or another. 

With so many uses, is it any wonder that you can use it on your nails, as well? 

It’s the amazing moisturizing quality that makes Vaseline one of the best nail treatments available. 

Bonus: it’s also one of the cheapest! 

Petroleum jelly can be found at any grocery, drug, or department store, and it will cost less than even the cheapest of cuticle oils.

And if you buy it in bulk, such as from Amazon, you can get it even cheaper!

To understand how it works, you have to understand how dry cuticles can relate to brittle nails.

It’s actually very simple: dry cuticles are less likely to protect the nail bed. 

They allow bacteria and germs in, where they make themselves at home. 

Eventually, this can cause infections that can be hard to remedy. 

Meanwhile, your nails will become brittle, thin, and discolored. Not a very good look, after all.

This can be dealt with by making sure that your cuticles are cared for. 

Normally, this means applying cuticle oil to the area. 

But cuticle oil can be finicky to apply, especially if you’re busy at the office or running errands. 

Vaseline offers all of the good and none of the bad of cuticle oil. 

It helps to hydrate your nails while making it easy to apply on the go. 

By moisturizing your cuticles (and hands) with petroleum jelly, you’ll be ensuring that they stay healthy and your nails stay beautiful.

Does Vaseline Help Brittle Nails?

Absolutely! Vaseline can help brittle nails by moisturizing them. As new ones grow in, they’ll be stronger and better protected than they were before.

Brittle nails can be a huge problem. 

Without strong natural nails, you run the risk of a bad outcome any time you get acrylic or gel nails. 

And, of course, just putting polish on your own won’t have beautiful results. 

Breaking and peeling are all signs that your nails aren’t at the level that you need them to be. No one wants that!

Petroleum jelly will help you to combat this. 

By keeping the cuticle and your hands moisturized, it helps to protect the most delicate, vulnerable parts of the nail. 

With microscopic beasties trying to make their way to your nail bed, you need all of the protection that you can get. 

And Vaseline provides this. It keeps the nails strong so that breakage becomes a thing of the past.

There’s a less-notable way that it helps, as well. 

One that a lot of people overlook: it makes nail care easy. 

You can carry small tubes and jars of Vaseline with you almost anywhere. 

Because it’s not a liquid, it won’t spill into your purse. 

And the “jelly” form it comes in makes it a cinch to apply, even when you only have a moment. 

This means that you can do your nail care on the go, despite a packed schedule and only a few minutes of free time.

How Do You Apply Vaseline To Nails?

Wash your hands thoroughly. Then, apply the Vaseline to your nails. Be generous! After 3-5 minutes, rinse.

Now that we’ve found out why Vaseline is good for nails let’s move on to the next big question: how to use it? 

Nail care instructions can sometimes be confusing and rather subjective. 

This one isn’t. 

The instructions are fairly straightforward, with no real consequences should you make a mistake. 

The process is very forgiving. 

All that you need to get it done is some petroleum jelly, a sink, some soap, and five minutes of free time. 

You can do this over a coffee break if you want!

Start off the way that you would before any type of nail care: washing your hands! 

It’s important to get as many of the germs and bacteria off of the skin as possible. 

Because microorganisms can cause dry, brittle nails, you want to avoid coming in contact with any, if you can. 

The presence of dirty hands is a huge factor in whether you’ll come out of this healthier or with weaker nails.

After you’ve dried your hands, apply the petroleum jelly. There’s no need to be conservative here: you’re not going to use too much. 

Any that isn’t used on your nails will only go to moisturizing your hands. 

It’s a win-win situation. 

Massage the Vaseline into the nails, paying special attention to the cuticle. Hangnails, too, should get a little extra TLC.

Then, you wait. It doesn’t take long for the moisturizing to begin. 

When 3-5 minutes have passed, you can be sure that the Vaseline has done its job. 

Rinse your hands again, being careful to get as much of the jelly off of your fingers. 

The moisture will remain while the sticky Vaseline goes down the drain.

How Often Should You Apply Vaseline To Your Nails?

The answer is subjective. However, most people won’t need to do this more than every two weeks.

There really is no clear-cut answer to this question.

It all depends upon your nail type and what you’re trying to achieve. 

What works for one person won’t necessarily work for the other, making it difficult to predict how often you should be applying Vaseline.

A good estimate of the number of times to use petroleum jelly on nails is once every 2-3 weeks. 

This lets you moisturize without leaving your hand oily and sticky. 

If you have nails that seem to be normal, this is probably the right time frame for you. 

It will give you the nails of your dreams and not interrupt your life too much.

But, if your nails aren’t perfect, it might be a different story. 

Nails that are dry, cracked, or peeling often show that your nails need more moisture than what you’re giving them. 

In that instance, petroleum jelly should be used more often to compensate for your dry skin. 

It’s worth a little trial-and-error to figure out just the right amount of Vaseline you need for gorgeous nails.

Of course, some people do have the opposite. 

It isn’t as common, but it’s possible for hands to be too moisturized. 

If that’s the case, then you would want to reverse what was written above. 

Cut back on the Vaseline, maybe only applying it once a month. You’ll eventually find yourself with a routine that you can enjoy.

Do be careful not to become too dependent on Vaseline! 

It’s possible that your skin may stop producing enough oil to naturally keep itself moisturized if you use petroleum jelly too often. 

Keep it a once-in-a-while treatment, not an everyday one, and you’ll fare better than you would otherwise.

Vaseline vs. Petroleum Jelly

There is no real difference between Vaseline and other brands of petroleum jelly.

As you can tell, we keep jumping from the term “Vaseline” and the term “petroleum jelly”. 

That might be confusing to some. (We even referred to it as oil jelly once!) 

You might be concerned that you’ll get the wrong thing or that there is a difference between Vaseline and other brands. 

But don’t worry: they’re the same thing! 

While the company behind Vaseline has since put out different kinds of creams and jellies, the iconic product is really no different than standard drugstore petroleum jelly. 

If you have the name-brand Vaseline, great! 

If you don’t, don’t worry about it. Plain ol’ petroleum jelly is still a good choice.

Of course, before buying, you’re going to need to check the label thoroughly. 

Because so many products are now including petroleum jelly, it can be easy to mix up a multipurpose cream with a jar of Vaseline. 

Often, these products have other ingredients and can be intended for specific use. This might end up with it not working as well. 

So, for the most part, it generally pays to opt for the standard Vaseline for your nails.


Vaseline is great for your nails. It’s great for your finances too.

It’s just such a versatile product, and it doesn’t cost too much either.

Plus, it’s easy to apply.

But less is definitely more with petroleum jelly. 

Be sure not to overdo it, and you’ll soon find your nails are in a much more healthy, hydrated state than before.