How To Remove Gel Nail Polish

Getting gel nails has so many benefits – the shine, the lasting power, the fact there’s no drying time – but, there is a very widespread bug-bear about them, and that’s removing them once they have either started to chip, or you have had too much nail growth.

With gel nails, a simple wipe with some polish remover just won’t suffice. It’s important that you understand how to remove gel nail polish properly at home, so that you don’t resort to the nail-damaging habit of peeling it off.

Tools – You will need a nail polish remover that contains acetone, cotton pads, tin foil, an emery board nail file and a cuticle pusher.

Step 1 – Start with your first nail, and gently buff over the surface of all your nails with an emery board nail file to remove the top coat of polish.

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Step 2 - Then, soak a cotton pad in your acetone nail polish remover. Wrap this cotton pad around your nail, then cover in tin foil. This will stop any of the remover from evaporating and it will all be concentrated on breaking down the polish on your nail.

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Step 3 – Work through the rest of your nails, doing Step 1 on each, then leave your nails wrapped up for around 20 minutes. This is a great opportunity to pop a face mask on an sit back and relax.

Step 4 – Remove the tin foil and cotton pads from your nails and you will see that the nail polish has broken down and is now in bits on your nails. Take either your cuticle pusher to gently scrape the remainder off, or file the nail surface gently with an emery board nail file, to remove the remainder of loosely attached polish.

Step 5 – Once all the polish is off your nails, wash your hands thoroughly as they have been exposed to a lot of nail polish remover, which can be toxic.

Step 6 – File your nails back into your preferred shape and length, then massage in some cuticle oil to prepare your talons for their next gel fix.

Quick Tips

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  • If this all sounds like too much work, you can grab easy gel nail polish removal kits from the likes of NAF! Salon (£18), where everything you need is contained in one easy packet!

  • There really is no quick fix when it comes to removing gel nail polish safely. You need to have patience and follow each step. Trying to take the polish off any other way will severely weaken your nails and cause them a lot of damage.