You might see your family’s dog groomer using nail grinders to cut down Fido’s nails to a more acceptable length, but have you ever considered using a similar grooming tool on yourself? If you struggle with particularly thick and difficult-to-cut toenails, or you just like giving yourself a lot of at-home manicures, you might want to invest in a nail grinder.
9 Best Nail Grinders:
Bluetop Electric Nail Drill Komorebi
Grace Electric Manicure and Pedicure Kit
Fatuxz Portable Electric Nail Drill
Seamind Professional Manicure & Pedicure Set
Beurer 24-Piece Professional Nail Drill
MelodySusie Portable Electric Nail Drill
Beautural Professional Manicure and Pedicure Kit
Alle’s Professional Electric Nail Drill
Makartt Professional Nail Drill
What is a Nail Grinder?
If you’re unfamiliar with nail grinders and have never used them to trim your dog’s nails, they’re pretty simple to use. But don’t make the mistake of thinking human nail grinders are the same as pet nail grinders. Dog owners, put that dog nail grinder away!
The human variant of these trimmers is basically just a handheld tool outfitted with a rotating head on one end, similar to a drill — only smaller. You can usually attach different heads or drill bits to the tool’s body as needed, depending on your intended use.
Most nail grinders are either battery-operated or rechargeable, though higher-end, professional and high-power grinders are usually equipped with a cord that you then plug into an outlet.
Related: How To Avoid Getting Razor Bumps: Step-By-Step Shaving Guide
Do You Need a Nail Grinder?
You may need a nail grinder for your basic nail care if you have particularly thick, yellow or problematic toenails. Thick toenails are usually an issue for the elderly, but they aren’t necessarily a sign of any health-related issues.
Rather, the thick toenails form as aging leads to decreased blood supply to the toes. In these instances, just like proper dog grooming requires you to file down your pooch’s nails for the sake of their comfort and safety, you might need to do something similar to your own toenails for optimum comfort.
However, it’s not just the elderly who might need to use a nail grinder every once in a while. Nail grinders are very popular with those who give themselves a lot of at-home manicures or intend to pursue their cosmetics license and need to practice their nail art skills at home. Nail grinders are a must for anyone who frequently works with acrylics or gel nail polishes as well.
Here are the 9 best nail grinders.
Ava Hathaway, owner and CEO of a beauty business called Dashboard Beauty, “the advantage of grinders is that its cut is more precise when used in thick nails than a file. Based on my experience I do not see any drawbacks in using nail grinders.”
So, is a nail grinder exactly what you need in order to show your feet or fingers a little TLC? Here are our nine top picks for our favorite nail grinding options. We hope this helps you choose the perfect tool for your toes.
Budget-Friendly Nail Grinders
Just starting out in the world of nail art? No need for anything super fancy? Want something that is beginner-friendly? Go with one of these budget-minded and easy-to-use options.
1. Bluetop Electric Nail Drill
If you’re looking for something that’s really on the budget-friendly side, you might want to opt for this nail drill that costs 25% less than the prices of some of these other options on our list. A great choice for those who aren’t really sure if they’ll find a lot of value in a nail grinder or drill, this option comes with five heads, making it feasible for grinding, polishing, buffing and more. As a battery-powered option, the drill requires two AA batteries, neither of which are included.
2. Komorebi Grace Electric Manicure and Pedicure Kit
Another budget-friendly nail grinder, this portable and lightweight kit runs on two AA batteries. It also comes with eight grooming tools and a storage box. In addition to the heavy-duty nail grinding tip, the kit also includes attachment heads for shaping, filling, polishing, buffing and cuticle polishing. Plus, this beginner-friendly, semi-professional tool is gentle enough to not cause injuries if you accidentally take the heavy-duty grinder to your delicate cuticles.
3. Fatuxz Portable Electric Nail Drill
Shape acrylic nails, remove gel nail polish, grind down thick nails — whatever it is you need to do, this beginner-friendly, easy-to-use nail drill and rotary tool can get the job done. Reviewers appreciate the low noise and the way the drill body dissipates heat, and a variable speed control button on the side of the drill body makes it easy to increase or decrease the drill speed without pausing your work.
Ready to level up from one of the above beginner-friendly files or grinders? Here are a few that are just a little more high-end, with a bit more functionality and power.
4. Seamind Professional Manicure & Pedicure Set
This ergonomic electric nail file can be used either on your fingernails or toenails and it comes with an array of various detachable heads. Pick the best fit for your use, and not only thin or trim your fingernails or toenails, but use the other included heads to shape and polish nails, or even remove calluses or dead skin. The file works at five speed settings, so you can go as gentle or rough as you like. The cordless file charges via a USB cable charger.
Related: Does Vegan Collagen Really Work? 7 Supplements For Healthy, Radiant Skin
5. Beurer 24-Piece Professional Nail Drill
If, though, you need more options, you can opt for this nail trimmer and bit grinder that comes with 10 different head attachments and 10 sandpaper bands. It all packs away into a handy carrying case. There are 18 drill settings and, combined with the various head attachments, you’ll have exactly what you need for grinding, cutting, filing, shaping, polishing and more.
Break one of the attachments? Even though there’s no warranty, Beurer sells single-head replacements on Amazon.
6. MelodySusie Portable Electric Nail Drill
For something that’s an upgrade but still not at all intimidating, you can try this handheld, portable cordless nail grinder and grooming kit that’s touted for its lightweight feel and quiet motor. It’s beginner-friendly, and comes with six interchangeable drill bits and six sanding bands. Reviewers love the price and say the drill gives them salon-quality results, especially when working on acrylic nails at home.
7. Beautural Professional Manicure and Pedicure Kit
Edging closer to pro level, but still at an affordable, mid-level price point, this handheld nail grinder kit comes with an LED light and 15 adjustable speeds that you control from two sets of buttons on the drill’s body. You can change the direction of the grinder rotation via another button toward the bottom of the drill. The replaceable attachments can be used for trimming, removing cuticles and ingrown hairs, grinding down calluses and more.
But what if you’re looking to swap out your normal salon care for at-home treatments? What if you think you can give yourself (or others) a mani or pedi worthy of pro status, all on your own, no trip to the salon required? If so, go with one of these pro-level options.
8. Alle’s Professional Electric Nail Drill
While it is a little pricier, this grinding tool is seriously impressive. Rather than being entirely handheld and either battery-powered or chargeable, like the options on our list thus far, this variant comes with a full control panel, which the grinder connects to via an electrical cord.
The control panel features a speed knob, which allows for a powerful grind, ideal for working on acrylic and extension nails, though you should probably start out at the lowest speed if you’ve never used a nail drill before. In addition to the six interchangeable drill heads, this option also comes with 100 grinding bands.
9. Makartt Professional Nail Drill
Similar to the above option from Alle’s, this Makartt professional-grade nail drill is the real deal, with a control panel that monitors speed, forward and reverse turns and more. It even hooks up to an included foot pedal, so you can control the drill by foot while you work with both hands. Recommended for both home and salon use, it’s definitely a good pick if you find yourself working on others’ nails more often than your own.
Related: The 10 Best Natural Skincare Products [Bye-Bye Toxins!]
How to Pick the Best Nail Grinder for You
According to Looking at all of the above options and still not sure of your perfect pick? Here are a few things to consider as you shop around for the best nail grinder for your needs.
While it’s typically safe to assume that the beginner-friendly nail grinders like those we listed above are on the less powerful side, you don’t want to just assume before making a purchase. Check out all the product details. You can find nail grinders with power levels that range from 1500W to 3000W.
If you’re a professional or if you’re working with acrylic nails on a regular basis, you’ll likely want a more powerful grinder. If you’re working with natural nails on a more regular basis, or if you’re brand-new to these types of tools, you likely want to go with a less-powerful option.
In general, the more powerful the grinder, the more expensive.
How do you plan on using your nail grinder? If you’re going to be doing a lot of basic nail care, you might not need as many attachments. On the other hand, if you’re doing more specialty, at-home manicures and pedicures, you may want more attachments, so that you have more options for your nail art.
If you frequently do others’ nails or want to be able to do your nails on the go, you’ll want a grinder that’s easily portable. Opt for a cordless version, as well as a grinder that runs off batteries versus needing to be plugged in or recharged frequently.
Related: TheraBox [Reviewed] Because We All Deserve Extra Self Care
Tips for Using Your Nail Grinder as a Beginner
If you’re just starting out using a nail grinder for the first time, you’ll want to follow a few handy tips, until you become more comfortable and confident.
Definitely don’t be afraid to go slow. In fact, starting at a slow speed (the slowest your grinder runs at) is recommended, so that you don’t inadvertently injure yourself. A powerful, fast grinder used incorrectly can cause serious damage to your cuticles and nails, leaving you with painful injuries that take weeks to heal. As you become more accustomed to the way your nail grinder runs, you can increase the speed at which you work.
Remove Dead Skin First
You’ll want to do any extra nail trimming that’s needed first, and then remove dead skin and push back your cuticles, before you begin grinding away at any nails. Some drills come with special attachments for this purpose, but if your drill did not, you can use an old-fashioned cuticle stick.
Hold Your Drill Horizontally
Hold your drill either horizontally or parallel to the nail you’re working on at any given time. This will help you control the drill more accurately and ensure that you’re not applying too much pressure on any individual nail. Be sure to work in small, circular motions.
Remember to Buff and Moisturize
After drilling your nail surface, remember to follow up with the buffing process. This will ensure that your nails look their best after being treated with a nail grinder. After buffing, use nail or cuticle oil to moisturize your fingers and prevent your hands from drying out in a painful way.
Taking Care of Your Nail Grinder
It’s very important that you take care of your nail grinder and keep it clean. This is true for your other adjacent tools, like your favorite nail clippers. It is the best way to avoid spreading germs and bacteria.
Each time you use your nail grinder, disinfect the used nail file bits. This is essential no matter what, but it is especially important in the event that you use the grinder and bits on other people’s nails as well. Clean the drill itself with a toothbrush, soap and water.
Remove nail polish from both the drill and the bits using your favorite nail polish remover. After cleaning all of the items, dry them completely before storing them to prevent the build-up of mold and mildew.
Give Your Nails a New Life
Whether you want to thin out thick toenails and sand down some rough edges, or shape your own acrylic nails at home without making an expensive trip to the salon, nail grinders can make that a reality for you. Even if you just want to learn how to buff and shape your nails as a little act of self-care, you can do all of this and more with the help of a new nail grinder.
Make sure to pick the best option for your needs and then practice using it. You might just find that achieving salon-perfect results is easier than you think!
You might also be interested in: How To Get Rid Of Yellow Toenails [With 7 Home Remedies]
9 Nail Grinders to Elevate Your At-Home Grooming:
- Bluetop Electric Nail Drill Komorebi
- Grace Electric Manicure and Pedicure Kit
- Fatuxz Portable Electric Nail Drill
- Seamind Professional Manicure & Pedicure Set
- Beurer 24-Piece Professional Nail Drill
- MelodySusie Portable Electric Nail Drill
- Beautural Professional Manicure and Pedicure Kit
- Alle’s Professional Electric Nail Drill
- Makartt Professional Nail Drill