How to Remove Gel Nail Polish at Home Without Acetone


Getting a great manicure is difficult. Often,  if you go to a nail salon,  the nail polish looks wonderful for a few hours or maybe even a day. But after a few days,  it begins to chip and look bad. For this reason,  gel manicures have become amazingly popular. Gel nails look so perfect,  and the polish stays on so well. The only problem is that the gel polish can be very hard to get off!


What Is Wrong With Acetone for Removing Gel Nail Polish?

If you have gel nail polish that you are having trouble getting off,  don’t fret. There are things you can do to take that gel nail polish off,  and you can even do it at home without using acetone. Acetone is a highly flammable and toxic chemical that can cause health problems if you are exposed to it for long periods of time or put it on your skin,  so not using acetone to take off your gel nail polish is a big plus. Let’s look at how you can do this. Read on to learn more about removing gel nail polish without the need to use dangerous acetone or acetone based products.

Remove Gel Nail Polish Without Acetone

There are several basic ways that you can remove nail polish without the need for acetone or acetone based nail polish removers.


1. Filing and Buffing to Remove Gel Nail Polish and Gel Nails

  • Start by trimming your nails to make them a smaller size. This lessens the surface area that you will need to remove the gel polish from. You can use a small pair of scissors or nail trimmers to shorten your nails. Make sure to trim your nails as short as possible,  but do not get too close to the nail bad or your nails may bleed,  and you don’t want that.
  • Once you have cut or trimmed your nails,  if you have snagged edges,  file the sharp edges down so that they are smooth. You can find a file at any pharmacy or online at a beauty website. Use a rougher file first to get snagged edges off quickly,  then use a fine file to finish smoothing the edges.

Using Just a Small Amount of Nail Polish Remover

  • Finally,  use a nail buffer to file and buff the surface of the nails. You can also find nail files online or in drug stores. There are usually three or four sides to a nail buffer. Each side has a number,  and you should follow the numbers,  using them to buff the surface of the nails. Slowly,  you will see the gel polish start to come off.

2. Peeling to Remove Gel Nail Polish and Gel Nails

  • Some of the gel nail polish can be peeled off,  so instead of filing and buffing,  you can simply strip the polish by easy peeling. You will notice chipping after about a week of the polish being on,  and you can take advantage of the chipping in a few weeks by taking hold of the chipped pieces and peeling them.
  • If the nails are not chipping by themselves,  feel free to use a cuticle stick or orange stick to try to dig under the gel polish and lift it up. Never dig too hard. If you will be using this method,  you can use some oils or conditioning fluid to help this process along.
  • Remember to be careful when pulling at chips and peeling off the gel polish. You need to make sure that you are gentle because if you pull too hard,  some of your natural nail could get pulled up.

3. Soaking Will Also Help These Processes

If you find that you are having trouble removing your gel nail polish with filing,  buffing and peeling,  you might consider taking the time to soak your nails first.

  • Gather the things you will need to soak your nails. You will need a small bowl for each hand,  filled with warm water and a drop of dish soap in each bowl. You can also put a teaspoon of salt in each bowl. You will also need a timer and a hand towel.
  • Put the water,  dish soap and salt in each small bowl. Make sure the water is warm enough. Set a timer for 15 or 20 minutes,  and put on a television show or movie if you like.
  • Make sure that your hands are washed and free of lotions or other topical ointments. Put your hands in the bowls and wait for the allotted time. When the time is up on the timer,  wipe of your hands with the hand towel and continue with the filing,  buffing and peeling to get the nail polish off.

Finally,  remember that in some cases you will need a small amount of nail polish removal to get that last bit of gel nail polish off. The point of this article is to help you so that you don’t have to take all of your gel nail polish off with an entire solution made up of acetone. This is too dangerous.

For this reason,  you can either use a nail polish remover that does not have any acetone in it or you can use a polish remover that just has a very small amount of acetone in it. The nail polish remover without acetone can be found at health stores or online.

Using a small amount of acetone in a regular bottle of nail polish remover or just a little bit of pure acetone on a cotton swab will not harm you,  and it can help you get those last little bits of nail polish off your nails. Make sure that you don’t get the acetone on your skin. You can prevent this by putting petroleum jelly on the skin around your nails. Depending on how long your manicure has been on and where you got your nails done,  you might need to use this step in addition to the rest of the steps above.

As always,  I’d love to hear your thoughts,  comments,  or questions below.