Your home has been your local practice studio, office and pub for a few weeks – so you can add a nail salon to the list too! If you regret receiving this gel manicure a few weeks ago, you are not alone. With all of your sacred halls closed, it’s up to you to take care of the maintenance yourself. And while it’s tempting, please don’t let go of your gel! If you’re wondering how to safely remove nail polish at home, we have direct answers from renowned nail artist Alex Yachno.
How to Remove Gel Paint Safely: Step-by-Step Guide
What you need to remove gel polish:
- Polish remover or acetone
- Coarse nail file (100 or 180 grit)
- Small bowl
- Cotton balls
- Aluminum foil packaging or removal foil
- Cuticle pusher or orange wooden stick
- Cuticle oil
- Towels for easy cleaning
Professional advice: Do all the steps with one hand at the same time. Once you have completely removed the nail polish from one hand, repeat the steps with the other hand.
Step 1: File the gel down.
Remove your towel to avoid confusion. File the tip of each nail with a coarse nail file. “This step is very important because you have to even out the surface layer and break the gel seal for the paint remover to penetrate,” says Yachno. Don’t completely remove the polish, but scratch the surface to make it visible.
Step 2: Dip your nails in nail polish remover.
Once it’s dropped, it’s time to soak the gel. You can do this in one of three ways:
Method 1: Dip your nails in a bowl of nail polish remover or pure acetone for at least 10 minutes.
Method 2: If you really want to feel like you’re in a nail salon, you can place a cotton ball soaked in nail polish on each nail and wrap it in aluminum foil.
Method 3: Even professionals like Yachno find it difficult to apply method two on their own, so the backing is Orly’s gel-removing film. “You already have a cotton swab on it, so just apply some remover to the pads and wrap each finger,”. The longer they act, the easier it will be to remove the gel.
Step 3: Remove the Gel
Remove the foil or nails from the remover. Using a metal cuticle stamp or an orange wooden stick, press the nail at an angle to squeeze out the gel – the key word is gentle. “Don’t force it – if it doesn’t come off easily, let it soak for another 10 minutes before trying again,”.
Step 4: Smooth nails.
When you’ve come this far, your nails will be free – congratulations! Once the gel is completely removed, your nails will feel very rough. Take a buffer of fine sand and gently rub the base of your nail until smooth.
Step 5: Rehydrate with cuticle oil.
Gels damage your nails, so now is a good time to let your nails breathe. Cuticle oil can help restore and maintain healthy nails. “Dryer varnish is very dry, so use plenty of cuticle oil to revive your nails,”.