Over-the-Counter Nail Fungus Treatments


When fungi infect your toenails or fingernails, they can become thick, discolored and unhealthy looking. It can also lead to painful symptoms. Treating this condition can be difficult with prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) medications, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, there are options.


ZetaClear is a topical, homeopathic nail fungus treatment available without a prescription. It combines the skin cell regeneration power of tea tree oil, almond oil and jojoba with vitamin E and the natural herbicidal properties of clove oil to destroy fungus. ZetaClear also contains lemongrass oil to discourage the growth of bacteria.

ZetaClear is applied on the nail and can be brushed under the edge of the nail. According to nail-care website Cure-Nailfungus.com, the formula penetrates deep under the nail to destroy the environment fungus can thrive in.


Nail-Rx is another all-natural formula that claims to be free of side effects, according to Cure-Nailfungus.com. The oils in the topical formula are similar to the ones found in ZetaClear, with the addition of lavender. Nail-Rx also uses clove oil to fight fungal growth. The website comparison of the two products shows them as equally effective, clearing up the problem somewhere between two weeks and two months and without side effects. Both remedies claim to be safer and more effective than leading prescription brand Lamisil.

Fungus Rx

Fungus Rx is a very mild topical solution for nail fungus that uses Tolnaftate, the same FDA-approved anti-fungal drug used in OTC athlete’s foot and jock itch remedies. While it is a safe medication for nail fungus, it is not a very potent one. Its effectiveness, according to Cure-Nailfungus.com, ranks just above home remedies like vinegar, but below other nonprescription treatments. Fungus Rx is effective on mild cases of nail fungus, but may not be powerful enough against severe fungal infections.

Prescription Options

If over-the-counter remedies do not cure the fungal infection, you may choose to see a doctor for prescription drugs. Brands such as Lamisil, Fulvicin and Sporanox are considered the most effective, but may have serious side effects, including risk of liver damage.

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