nail file

See synonyms for nail file on
  1. a small file of metal or cardboard, for trimming, smoothing, or shaping the fingernails and sometimes having a point for removing dirt from under them.

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Origin of nail file

An Americanism dating back to 1870–75

Words Nearby nail file Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use nail file in a sentence

  • The nail file and nail scissors must be used as often as possible.

    The Complete Bachelor | Walter Germain
  • I had my nail file out and was touching up a cuticle, holding it out for inspection before I said anything.

    The Misplaced Battleship | Harry Harrison (AKA Henry Maxwell Dempsey)
  • He flung himself down in a chair before his dressing-table and picked up a nail-file.

    The Black Moth | Georgette Heyer
  • It was a dagger consisting of a sharpened nail file, about three inches long, driven into a roughly rounded piece of wood.

    No Clue | James Hay
  • I havent seen it since she borrowed it, and Ive ruined my nail-file trying to open the box of cake mother sent.

British Dictionary definitions for nailfile


/ (ˈneɪlˌfaɪl) /

  1. a small file, chiefly either of metal or of board coated with emery, used to trim the nails

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012