How to remove gel nails at home

How to remove gel nails at home

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Gel or acrylic nail treatments can last more than a month, remaining intact regardless of the work you do on a daily basis. It is, therefore, a quite effective and comfortable alternative for all the people who do not manage to have a natural length of nails or do not have time to take care of them every week. However, one of the most avoided moments of the entire process is going to the center to remove the gel nails after several weeks. Many people choose to remove gel nails in the comfort of their home.

How to remove gel nails at home

What is needed to remove gel nails at home

As always when we try to remove a product from the nail, one of the essential steps we must take before knowing how to remove gel nails at home is to protect the nail. We must provide it with the nutrition and strength that it may have lost due to enamel. To do this, we can use any moisturizer or olive oil that helps us moisturize the cuticles and nails.

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Additionally, we must choose whether we want to remove the gel nails with the help of acetone or, failing that, try less aggressive procedures. In any case, to know how to remove gel nails at home without a drill, we will need:

  • A bowl
  • Cotton
  • a file
  • Foil
  • Hot water

Before you remove this product from your nails, you may be wondering how long gel nails can be worn. We tell you about it in this other article: How long do gel nails last.


The first thing you should do to remove gel nails with acetone is to start filing the gel, being careful not to damage your natural nail. Try to do it with movements that always go in the same direction, achieving a thinner layer of gel. This way, the acetone will be able to access more easily and remove the enamel.

Once the area is well filed, fill a bowl with acetone and soak the nails for at least 30 minutes for it to take effect. After that time, you should check how the acrylic begins to rise until it goes to the surface of the nail. Once this happens, the nail must be repaired and hydrated with the help of oils or Vaselines.

Acetone and aluminum foil

If you want to make the process a little faster and more precise, one of the tricks you can use is to use aluminum foil. To do this, we follow the same process of filing and removing the enamel. We can also cut the length of the artificial nail to delimit its removal.

Also, when using acetone, instead of dipping the nails in it, we can soak a cotton ball with acetone, place it on top of the nail and wrap it in aluminum foil to cause a heating effect. After 15 minutes, remove the foil and you will see how the acrylic is gone as well.

This is the best method to remove gel nails at home, but how to remove porcelain nails? Find out in this other article.


You may not want to expose your nails and skin for so long to acetone, as while it’s a fairly effective remedy, it can be a bit harsh. In such a case, other techniques can be used to remove gel nails at home without acetone. To do this, you must file and trim your nails as in the previous cases to thin the artificial layer and delimit the area.

Next, dip your nails in a bowl of rubbing alcohol and water and let them sit for at least 30 minutes. Over time, with the help of cotton, remove the remains that have been softening and rising. If it doesn’t all come off the first time, repeat the soaking until your nails are clean.

Hot water

If you are wondering how to remove gel nails with water, you can do that too. This is one of the most natural and respectful methods with our nails and our skin, since we will only use hot water. To do this, we must put water to heat, leaving it at a temperature that we can withstand on our skin, but that tends to be hot, so that it softens the skin and the acrylic material.

Before immersing the nails in hot water, we must file them, trim them and start making the shape of the cuticle with an orange stick. Thus, the gel will rise and the water will be able to penetrate more easily. We leave our hands to soak for about 40 minutes and, after that time, we begin to remove the gel with the help of the orange stick until the nail is clean and free of debris.

Now that you know how to remove gel nails at home, it is very important that you treat your nails to restore their beauty and vitality. Discover How to strengthen my nails after removing the gel ones in this other article.

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