Gel nail polish is amazing because it lasts SO long, but unfortunately, they can be a little hard to remove. Of course, the best and safest way to remove gel nail polish is having them taken off at your local nail salon, but if you don’t have the time we’ll show you how to remove gel nail polish at home! It will take a little time and patience, but if done right, your nails should be free of gel polish and still look healthy!

How to Remove Gel Nail Polish at Home – a Step by Step Guide

buffing gel nail polish

This is the best and easiest way to remove gel nail polish at home:

  1. File off the top layer of the gel polish.
  2. Soak cotton balls in acetone.
  3. Place the cotton balls over each nail and cover with aluminium foil.
  4. Leave on for at least 15-20 minutes.
  5. Remove by bushing onto the nail.
  6. Gel polish should now be gone, but if not, use an orange stick to push the rest of the gel polish away.

You’ll Need:

  • Acetone
  • Cotton balls
  • Aluminium foil
  • Nail file
  • Nail buffer
  • Orange stick
  • Cuticle oil
  • Nail strengthener

#1. File Off The Top Layer

In order for this to work, you’ll first need to remove the glossy top layer of the gel polish. Do this by filing the top layer using a nail file. Make sure you don’t file too much as you don’t want to damage the actual nail bed. File until you no longer see the shininess of the gel polish.

#2. Preparation

Prepare your acetone, cotton balls, and aluminium foil. Cut 10 small squares of aluminium foil. Rip each cotton ball in half (an entire cotton ball would be too much). Fill a small bowl with some acetone.

#3. Cotton Balls + Aluminium

foil method

Dip a cotton ball into the acetone and play directly onto the nail. Wrap the nail in aluminium foil and do the same for the rest of your nails. Let sit for at least 15-20 minutes.

#4. Removal

Remove the cotton balls and aluminium by gently pushing upwards. The gel polish should mostly be off, but if not, use an orange stick to remove the rest of the polish. If that doesn’t work, you may have to repeat the process one more time.

#5. Buffing + Care

Buff your nails gently to remove any leftover residue from the gel polish. Wash your hands and apply a strengthening polish as well as cuticle oil around the nail beds.

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Remove Gel Nail Polish at Home