Why Do My Cuticles Itch? Reasons & Solutions!!

You’ve done a good manicure in the hopes to impress your friends. But after a while, you found out that your cuticles are itching.

You thought of ignoring the itchiness as it’s a minor issue. But then it started to itch severely. To the point where it became unbearable.

So you’re wondering, why do my cuticles itch?

Well, it can happen that your nails and cuticles are overly dry. So the cuticle cracks and starts to itch. Or it can be a bacterial attack that resulted in an infection. Or any of your manicure products may have irritated your cuticles. So that it became itchy.

These are pretty much the reasons why your cuticles itch. But to know how to detect what happened and how to solve it, be with us.

Why Do My Cuticles Itch- 3 Reasons! Why Did it Happen? 

Cuticles are the tiniest and sensitive part of your fingernail. But as we forgot to mention it’s super SENSITIVE. 

Because of this sensitivity, they’re the root of problematic nails. So, when they start itching, you know the problem is serious. 

So let’s share with you what might have happened to your cuticles.


One reason can be that your cuticles got dried up. This happens when you skip moisturizing. 

If you’ve recently ignored your cuticles, this is what you get in return. Dry wrinkled cuticles that look like dead tree roots.

This happens because you haven’t moisturized your cuticles enough. So lack of moisture turned your cuticles dry. Which resulted in them cracking. 

So the root of the cuticles starts itching, and it then spreads to the nails. Even if you ignore it in the first place, it will become a serious problem. 

Allergic Reaction

Another reason behind irritated cuticles is an allergic reaction. Our nails go through a lot of procedures. For example, during one single manicure, 10-12 products are applied on nails. Among all these products, one or two can irritate your skin.

If irritation happens, the cuticles and nails turn red. Then the allergy makes your cuticles itch. 

This can be due to excessive nail product usage. Or the application of low-quality products.  Which can damage the skin underneath and making it itch.


So another reason is infection. Remember you might have struggled between long or short nails. And ended up choosing long nails. But there’s a lot of disadvantages here.

Long nails can hold bacteria inside them. Which are totally unnoticeable. But it turns into a problem when you try cutting your nails.

Because while trimming nails or hangnails, you might’ve cut your nails a little. The skin becomes visible and the remaining bacteria enter the open-cut.

Then they slowly start multiplying in numbers. As a result, the nail condition worsens along with that of the cuticles. Thus resulting in itchy cuticles.

Now, you know what went wrong and the reason for it. So, let’s move on.

How to Detect What The Problem Is?

You’ve been through the part why your cuticles can itch sometimes. But the thing is from the outside, many symptoms can look the same. And it can be pretty difficult for you to detect the real cause.

As all symptoms are close enough, it’s easier to misunderstand the cause. But you may think that learning the reasons is enough.

If that’s what you think, then take a step back. Because you may be proved wrong by us. But to be sure of the cause, you’ll need to bear with us.

How to Know if The Cuticles are Dried Up?

Let’s start with the easy to identify option. To be sure, you’ll need to go through a self-test. So that you can know for sure if it’s the reason that made your cuticles itch.

So, first, look at your cuticles. See if it’s visible enough or not. One sign among others for dry cuticles is overgrown cuticles. So if you’ve been wondering why your cuticles grow fast? Or why do they even itch?

There could be a single answer for both. That is dry cuticles. But you’ll need to look for some more signs to be actually sure.

The next sign would be extra white cuticles. If dryness is the main problem, then you’ll see extra whiteness. The cuticles will look like white veins as if it’s dead. Sometimes you can even encounter cracked cuticles. That can only happen due to over dryness.

If you can’t identify by seeing, you can do another trick. Rub your fingers on the cuticle and feel if it’s harsh. Dryness can be the reason if your cuticles are hard and scratchy. And you’ll be able to feel it while rubbing your cuticles.

You might have found so, then be sure that dryness is the culprit. It’s behind all the itchiness you’re feeling. If it’s not, then let’s look at what else is there.

How to Tell if An Allergic Reaction is Causing Itchy Nails?

You already know that it can be another reason. But we haven’t put all the cards on the table yet. So here we are. Before we start talking, know that it can be really tricky to differentiate between allergic reaction and infection.

We even heard that some consider them the same. And that’s when things get serious. Without proper identification of the cause, you can’t be sure about the healing procedure.

So let’s guide you a little here. When an allergic reaction happens, it normally spreads. And it’s likely that you’ll see multiple nails get affected.

One important thing to tell you is that in case of an allergic reaction, the overall nail gets hampered. As a result, itchy cuticles show up. So the first sign is, you’ll see redness around the nail and outside the nail fold.

You may even find out that the skin under your nail is turning red. And the cuticles turn pinkish as they are irritated.

 It’s possible you’ll feel a strong irritation on the nail, especially on your cuticles. And if you consider this normal, then you’re so wrong. Because it will irritate to a level that you’ll feel like ripping your cuticles apart.

You’ll also see your fingers swelling. And it won’t happen to only one nail. Mostly it will affect multiple ones. 

The reason why multiple nails are affected is the usage of the same nail products. That may have been what caused the allergic reaction.

Another issue might be your cuticles got irritated by the artificial nails.

But if these are not your signs, then it can be an infection. So go through that section as well.

How to be Sure if It’s An Infection?

We’ve already mentioned that allergic reactions and infections are quite similar. As their symptoms are alike, you’ll have a hard time identifying them.

So here’s what to look for. First, see if there’s any bruise on your nail around the cuticles. 

That’s the minimum sign. In the worst cases of infection, the nail might come off. Or the infected part might fall. But mostly when it’s an infection, it only affects one nail and cuticle.

There’s not much chance for the infection to spread in multiple nails. Rather it might spread in that particular nail. So while the infection is spreading to the cuticles, it can make them itch.

Another sign is that you’ll see that they are filling up with pus. And that’s when the pain starts. There’s a chance that you’ll feel constant pain in that area.

Soon enough, the pain will make you feel numb. So if you’re feeling this kind of pain, check the signs to know that it’s an infection. 

We’ve now stated everything that you need to know to find the reason. So you must be certain what’s the reason behind your itchy cuticles.

But if you still have any confusion, just consult with your doctor. And you’ll be all good.

How to Make The Itching Stop?- 4 Reasons!!

So you’ve just figured out the condition of your cuticles. And you’re certain why the cuticles itch. But there’s nothing you can do without knowing how to get rid of them. 

So we thought you could use some help. Hence. We’re presenting you with the solutions. 

Soak Hands in Warm Water

 For an infection, this is your solution. For that, you’ll need-

  • Bowl
  • Warm water
  • Chamomile oil
  • Salt

So what you need to do is, bring a bowl. Then add 2 cups of warm water to it. Now add 1 teaspoon of salt. And give it a light stir. Then put 3-4 drops of camomile oil to it. Again mix it with the water.

soak hands in warm water
Source: healthkadose.com

Now you’ll have to soak your hands in it. Especially the nail that’s infected. Repeat it thrice a day. It will help with the healing process as well as calming the cuticles. So that it won’t be itchy. The chamomile helps with irritation and salt works as an antibacterial agent.

So you have to soak your hands for 10 minutes at a time. No need to wash your hands afterward. You can let the fingers dry naturally. Or you can take a clean towel and wipe the fingers lightly. Under any circumstances, you shouldn’t rub your nail or cuticles no matter how they itch.

Because rubbing the cuticles will make situations only worse.

Now if you’re more into DIY stuff, check out the next solution.

DIY Solution

Whether it’s a bacterial infection, dryness, or allergic reaction, DIY solutions are always here. We made these ones for ourselves. And we thought that you’ll be benefitted from them as well. So let’s see how to make them.

Banana & Honey Mixture

To make this, you’ll need half a banana. Mash it with a fork. Now add 1 teaspoon of honey and 1 teaspoon of organic turmeric powder.

Now let it sit on your fingernails for 15 minutes. Make sure to wash it off with water just after 15 minutes. Otherwise, your finger and nails will be stained by the turmeric.

banana and honey
Source: manukahealth.co.nz

Turmeric has antibacterial properties. And honey is also a natural moisturizer. Whereas, a banana is filled with antioxidants. So it helps in bringing moisture and disinfecting your cuticle. So that they won’t itch.

Milk and Oats Mixture

If you’re suffering from dryness, use this one. For that, you’ll need to grind whole-grain rolled oats. Take ½ cup milk and 2 tablespoons of ground oats. 

Now put that in the oven for 30 seconds. Take it out and stir it. Now dip your nails into the mixture for 5 minutes. Then take them out and let the remaining solution dry on your nails.

oats and milk
Source: thriftyfun.com

Touch your nail and see if it transfers to your nail. If not then understand that it’s dried up. So place your hands under the water and it’ll wash off automatically.

Oats and milk have a highly moisturizing effect. If dryness has been the reason behind the itchy cuticle, it will be solved in no time.

Oil Mixture

Yes, you’re going to make your own cuticle oil. Well, it’s actually a mixture of different oils. It’s a mixture of antibacterial, anti-inflammable, and moisturizing oils. So let’s dig in.

Take a pan and pour half a cup of organic coconut oil in it. Now add 2 tablespoons of almond oil. Place it on the stove and put it on medium. Let it boil for once then add 5 cloves. Let it boil again. Now take it down from the stove. Let it sit for 5 minutes.

Then add 12 drops of tea tree oil and 4 drops of lavender oil. Now mix it. Then add ¼ teaspoon of chamomile oil and mix again.

Keep mixing it for 5 minutes. Now your miracle cuticle oil is ready. You can store it in a glass bottle with a dropper head. So that whenever you need, you can just put 2 drops of oil mixture to each cuticle. And it will be moisturized and itchiness won’t bother you anytime soon.

Use this oil and you’ll be thanking us right after. 

Remove Fake Nails

Another thing you need to do is remove your acrylic nails. Because if it’s an allergic reaction, it can be because of your fake acrylic nails.

So take them off, before they damage your cuticles even more. Most chemicals used on acrylic nails are harmful. If you have sensitive skin, these fake nails are causing you trouble.

So carefully take them out. Wash your hands and dry them. 


Another thing you can do is moisturize your nails and cuticles. You can use store-bought solutions. For that, why don’t you check these?

cuccio natural milk

Cuccio Natural Milk & Honey Cuticle Revitalizing Oil

yes to coconut ultra hydrating moisturizing hand & cuticle cream

Yes To Coconut Ultra Hydrating Moisturizing Hand & Cuticle Cream for Dry Skin

Or you can use any one of the above DIY solutions to moisturize. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Why do cuticles itch after getting nails done?

When nails are done, it gets exposed to various chemicals. So some of the chemicals can hamper your skin. And make it irritated.

How do you treat itchy cuticles?

To treat itchy cuticles, first dip your fingers in soapy water for 15 minutes. Then dry your fingers with a clean towel. You can repeat it twice a day. The exact measurements will be 2 cups of warm water with 1 tablespoon of liquid soap.

How to make a homemade tonic for itchy cuticles?

Boil 1.5 cups of water. When it reduces to 1 cup, add 10 drops of tea tree oil and 5 drops of chamomile essential oil. Then stir it. And soak your cuticles init. Let it dry naturally.


We’ve shared all we got in our heads about itchy cuticle hacks. So the answer to why do my cuticles itch is clear to you.

And we thank you for having the patience to go through it.

So let us know what solution you applied. Comment on how that turned out for you.

Thank you & good luck.

Katharyn Riedel

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