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Callouses ... care and maintenance ... any suggestions ??

Finger callouses ...


This is a topic I haven't see discussed here much, if at all.  But, it's certainly an important issue for everyone who plays guitar.  Especially steel string acoustic.


We all know that developing callouses takes time and perserverance.  Pain is probably one of the chief culprits in causing beginners to give up and quit trying to learn guitar.


My question though, is once you have developed nice calloused fingertips, what is the best way to maintain them ??


I play 1-2 hours per night and my callouses are thick and tough.  Almost too tough, if that's possible.  They're kind of rough and have string "grooves" worn into them.


Subsequently, I find that the callouses are so rough and uneven, that they tend to drag and hang up on strings during chord changes.


Should I "sand them down" ??  Is there any sort of lotion or anything of the sort to smooth them out ??


What (if anything) do you folks do to care for and maintain your hard-earned callouses ??

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Hi Jud,

I use a callous tool that is made for using on feet. It is basically a round pumice stone flat on one side with a handle. I just lightly smooth down the rough edges. It has worked fine for me. Got it at Walmart.

Good idea - my callouses get hard and shiny and slip on the strings particularly my pinky finger - I'll use the pumice stone to fix that.  My callouses could be so prominent because I am pressing too hard on the fret board.  Maybe I should ease off a bit.
Use one of your wives Emery boards . the thing she does her nails with .

So ... Looks like the consensus here so far is that sanding them down is the wise thing to do?




I was a little hesitant to grind away what took so long to create, but I suppose that a little "grooming" would be benficial.

I believe that a gentle stroking not a grinding would be best.
 i have tried guitar hands skin treatment samples that is nice, but have not bought a tube because its pretty $$$ for my taste ,I would buy it if it was reasonable.  Im not sure if its not just hand cream  but it does keep my fingers comfortable while plying  

What gauge of strings are you using?  That would make a difference...

Lights ...

Sounds like the rosin bag would be an excellent idea - I'll have a go with this and see if it helps.


Ok. Callouses happen when you play a lot. Just like getting a sun tan happens when you're outside
A lot. Callousing and tanning are NOT activities (lol!!) They are just a nice by-product
that happens when you're doing something else. In other words....worry about 
Something else. : )

For many, if not most people, callouses get thicker and rougher the more you play.  For some of us, that thickness and roughness begins to inhibit our playing to the point that we need to do something.  Not all people tan ... some people just burn if they don't pay attention.

Yep ain't that the truth, file them down and you'll find also that eventually they kind of stop building later in life and it also helps to not press so hard. That will help those callouses from building to thickly but if they do a nice older emery board that your wife/girlfriend is getting reay to throw out works wonders.

As for a Rosin bag well thats suppose to help the pitcher to hold onto the ball maybe be not to great for guitars and the strings as they also have some stickyness to them??????? ouch .ship


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