How Did They Cut Nails in Ancient Times?

Have you ever wondered how people in ancient times managed to cut their nails without the modern nail clippers we use today? Well, it turns out that they had some interesting and creative ways to keep their nails trimmed. In this article, we’ll explore some of the methods used by our ancestors to cut their nails.

Scissors and Knives

One of the earliest methods of nail cutting was using small scissors or knives. These were commonly made from bronze or iron and were often used by the wealthy. The blades were sharp and strong, allowing for precise cuts, but they were also dangerous and could easily cause injury if not handled properly.

Bite Them Off

Another method that was commonly used was simply biting off the nails with one’s teeth. This was a common practice in many cultures, although it is considered unhygienic today. However, in ancient times, it was a practical way to keep one’s nails short.

Files and Stones

Some ancient cultures used files or stones to shape their nails. These were typically made from rough materials like sandstone or pumice stone. They would rub the file or stone against their nails until they achieved the desired shape.

Animal Claws

Believe it or not, some people in ancient times used animal claws to trim their own nails. For example, the Ancient Egyptians used lion claws as nail clippers! They believed that using lion claws would give them strength and courage.


In conclusion, while we take our modern nail clippers for granted today, our ancestors had to rely on creativity and resourcefulness to keep their nails trimmed. From scissors and knives to animal claws and stones, there were many different methods used throughout history. It’s fascinating to imagine what other tools people have come up with over time for everyday tasks that we now take for granted.