How To Remove Gel Polish With Zero Damage

And you don't even need to visit your salon and pay for it


Most of us would agree that the gel manicure is one of the best inventions of this decade. I mean, shiny, perfect, chip-free polish for two weeks... we were sold from the get-go.

But we're not so hot about the removal process. Firstly, having to pay the nail salon another fee for the removal, on top of getting the pricy gel manicure in the first place, is just not ideal. The other downside is the beating our nails take during this gel polish removal process.

Surely there's a better way, you say. Yes, there is. And there's no better way than to do it yourself. Here's how.

Firstly, you will need lots of heavy-duty acetone remover. So to minimise damage to the surrounding skin of your fingertips, do yourself a favour and swab on a layer of hand cream using a Q-tip so you can avoid it getting on the nails itself. Make sure to cover the skin of each fingertip well. 

Next, you need to file off the hardy gel surface layer so whip out the coarsest, roughest nail file you've got. Buff away until the gel polish loses its shine. Don't worry, the gel polish is still thick enough so your nails won't be damaged by all this buffing.

Then cut your cotton pad squares into quarters and prepare some aluminium foil too, cutting the later into squares of roughly five centimeters.

Soak the cotton pads in strong acetone nail polish remover and place one on each nail. Wrap each fingertip with the foil to keep the acetone-soaked cotton pad in place on the nail. Next, wait for up to half an hour for the acetone and foil to do the trick.

After 30 minutes, remove the foils and cotton pads. The cotton should already be able to take off some of the gel colour. Most of the remaining polish colour on your nails would have softened by now and you can gently push it off your nail beds using a wooden cuticle stick. Do not scratch or peel any stubborn colour that still lingers. Just use a bit more acetone remover on a clean cotton pad to remove it like your would regular polish.

Make no mistake about it, acetone remover is harsh on skin and nails alike. After this process, wash hands thoroughly with warm water and soap before replenishing nails and skin with a nourishing cuticle oil and rich hand cream. Your D.I.Y gel mani removal process is complete.

Manicure image @starfme via Instagram

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