Gel nail polish is known for its long lasting nature and its shiny and glossy finish. This is the reason why many of the gel manicures have become so popular amongst women of all ages. We love the way it radiates shine and warmth. We absolutely love the complements that we receive when wearing gel nail polish. Problem with gel nails is removing them can be a headache and you don’t always have time for the salon. What do you do in this situation? The answer is very simple; you remove the nail polish at home. Here is a step by step guide on how to do it.
Preparing the Nails.
First, use a nail file to scratch and roughen up the top coat a bit. The top coat is designed to protect the finished product so that what makes it so difficult to remove. Once you break that protective layer things become easier. You have created a bigger surface area for the next stage to work on. If you are able to pick any loose bits off without damaging the nail below then go ahead and do so but be careful not to pull off anything that’s part of you.
Get some acetone. Pure acetone is cheaply available by the gallon so there is no need to pay a premium for the stuff sold for nails because it’s all the same. *WARNING *Acetone which is also known as Propanone is a flammable solvent so keep away from naked flames or anything that might cause it to ignite and also use it in a ventilated area. Follow all safety instructions that come with this and all chemicals.
A Few Options.
There are a few ways to go from here but they all work in a similar way. Your aim is to dissolve and soften the gel as much as possible until you can peel the majority of it off then wipe the residue away.
The simplest way is to just soak your fingers in the acetone for as long as it takes, after about ten minutes you should see some softening at least.
Another way is to warm the acetone. Chemical processes generally occur more rapidly the higher the temperature. If you put your bowl of acetone in another larger bowl of warm water the acetone will be warmer and so the process will be quicker but be careful that you follow the safety rules that come with the acetone if you try can heat it.
The third way is to get 10 small cotton balls or however many fingernails you are removing the gel polish from, dip them in acetone and then keep them on your nails. Because there is a smaller amount, the acetone will be heated by the fingers a little, speeding up the process.
Also, using some foil cut into small pieces, wrap the nails. This would make a cap like appearance for the nails and keep the liquid in. You could use a tape or some other method of keeping the cotton and solvent in place but make sure it won’t dissolve in the acetone.
After 10 minutes, you can carefully remove the foil and the cotton from one nail, preferably the thumb. See if acetone has worked or not. You will have to swipe the nail with the cotton ball once or twice in order to clean the gel nail polish. If it comes out easily, remove the foil from the other nails and repeat the same procedure.
If the gel nail polish doesn’t come off easily, wrap it all back up again and leave it a bit longer and repeat the process until everything can be wiped off.
Precautions while removing gel nail polish at home.
- Apply Vaseline/Petroleum Jelly on your fingers and around the nail to protect from the possible effects of prolonged contact with acetone.
- When the gel is removed, wash the petroleum jelly and any other residues that are left. Now simply condition your nails, a lot. As gel nail paints don’t give any space for the nails to breathe, the nails can get dry, weak and brittle. Therefore, use a good hand cream after washing it properly with cold water.
- Now, take proper care of your nails and make sure that you file the nails properly. Use a buffer and a good quality nail file for this purpose. Try to remove any rough edges as well.
- If possible, don’t use polish on the nails for the next few days. This will give your nails a chance to breathe before you are ready for another session of nail paints.
Leaving it to the professionals at the nail salon is probably the most recommended way of doing this but needs must and this method is certainly better than picking them off or biting them.