Tonail clippings

OK, this has been driving me crazy for some time:
How did people trim their toenails before toenail clippers/scissors?


A simple answer isscissors, which are dated back to 1500BC.

Anecdote but there is an old Popeye cartoon from the 1930s where Popeye uses scissors to cut his toenails. Kinda puzzled me as a kid.

Really? I’ve always used scissors.

Humans have been around for about four million years, well before the development of metal-working.


They could have easily filed them down with some suitably hard, rough object, like a rock. Certainly hasn’t been any shortage of rocks in human history, and they don’t require any fancy metalworking or other craftsmanship. Just walk around until you find one the right size and texture, and rub it on your nails.

I still very rarely use nail clippers, on fingers or toes. I just use another finger nail to make a nick in the side and then tear across. Easy. Occasionally you end up tearing a bit too low though, which hurts.

I don’t use clippers/scissors - I always use a nail file.

And the basic design of a nail file has existed in nature since rocks were invented. I concur that this is the most likely answer.

Ok, then start a thread asking what people used before scissors to clip their toenails.

GAHHHH! That just made my stomach flip.:stuck_out_tongue:

I assume that, before we wore shoes, toenails just wore down from exposure and possibly use.

I would think that to. They would probably grow thicker and heavier, and more likely would be trimmed by abrasion than cutting. But we only have to address the OP, which asks about the invention of nail clippers, which may only have been a couple of hundred years ago.

Gets my vote.

This is me as well. Don’t even own clippers.

This is probably still the preferred method, for some.

Old timers used a knife. Bits of nail were pared away, then the rock-as-emery was probably employed to get rid of the rough edges.

FWIW. My daughter just brings her foot up to her mouth and chews them off.

What are you on about? The OP asks about scissors, which makes your 1st, 3rd and 4th posts somewhat odd.

When I was a kid and considerably more flexible, this is what I did. Now I file.

Actually nothing, and I apologize to the OP (and others) for the intrusion.