One thought on “Guitar 101: 5 Tips for Dealing With Calluses

  1. Managing guitar calluses is part of guitar playing. I play a lot of acoustic guitar, and my calluses get dented to the point of twanging my strings as the string slides off the hill of the callus into the groove. I spend a lot of time conditioning my fingertips with pressure to keep the callus flat. When my hands are wet, it really helps to pressure flatten the callus out, but you must do it all the time to maintain the condition of your fingertips. (However, do not play guitar until your fingertips are dry, or they really get grooved.) I also use nail clippers to cut the edges of the calluses to smooth them out. I have tried to use sandpaper and files, but they do not get the grooves out without taking too much of the callus, so I learned to just constantly use the pressure flattening technique to keep my calluses manageable. On occasions when I cut too much callus off, I use super glue to make like a fingertip bandaged to help with the pain. I also want to add, that over fifty years of playing, I still get grooves and pain in my fingertips after hours of playing.

    One other thing is that if you play the same few chords over and over, they can really cause grooving, so varying your notes/chords helps keep the callus grooves mostly smooth.

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