Go up 1/2 a shoe size.
My shoes are 1.5 sizes bigger than street shoes, my nails are short as they can be, but I still get sore, and sometimes black, nails on the second toe when my long runs are more than ten-twelve miles.
I think it's just the repeated striking on the ground.
I was told to fit 2 fingers behind your heel and the shoe. I haven't had a problem since...
Sometimes, my street shoes are a 6 or 7. My running shoes are an 8...
Another one is to push your heel back in your shoe and there should be a thumbs's width between the end of your longest toe (not always the big toe) and the front of the toe box.
Cutting the toe nails short so there's no white and having your shoes 'top laced' so it cups the heel to prevent excessive movement can help.
Sometimes it's the pressure of footstrike though, not the toe actually bashing the end of the shoe.
The toe box on a running shoe needs to fit for length, width and height. If you've got the correct size of Kayano and your nails are short then I would guess you should try a different shoe (start with the comparable shoe from other brands). Alternatively get some Thorlo socks because they're quite padded around the toe area.
The other thing i've found is that black toe nails don't disappear very quickly even if you sort out the cause of the problem.
just let them fall off and make a necklace out of the bits....
Or leave it on the side of the bath so your other half picks it up thinking it's a plaster...
It could be that your toe-nails are hitting the top of the toe-box, rather than the end.
Or it could be your socks. I have one toe-nail that gets bruised by my sock rubbing on it when I run really long distances.
A big thank you everybody who took the time to respond, there are so many tips and suggestions, and I'm sure that between them I'll find a way to lessen, if not totally cure, my black toenail problem. The suggestion from M.ister W sounds very plausible. Some of the suggestions and comments are very funny like the 'making a necklace out of the toe nails' from Karl "nice one Karl", and the NB comments from Fat Buddha and from ploddingOn. Again a big thanks to all who took the time to respond.
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