What if I don’t have time to go to the store to get my gels removed?’ ‘Surely, I can just do it at home by myself?’ We’ve all had this thought and luckily, we are not deluded! Gels can be removed safely and doesn’t have to just be done in store (although highly recommended as your technique is everything!)

Although gel manicures promise a chip-resistant look and although we are informed they will last up to 14 days, this is not always the case. Whilst peeling and picking off the polish seem to be a convenient and good way to remove the polish at home, it is also really bad for your nails!

The salon method of removal is effective, as the technicians know what they are doing and will more often than not, not damage your nail bed, but it can be costly. To save you time and money, using a file, acetone and tin foil at home is an alternative option.

Instead of peeling the gel polish off, file the shiny layer of top coat off instead using an emory board. After doing this, the gel polish should be left with a powdery finish. Make sure you don’t file the nail so much though! You want to avoid filing the polish down to your nail bed. Over-buffing the nails leave them scratched and damaged which is why you need to be careful! As long as you file the top layer so your nails are no longer shiny, the acetone can soak through and penetrate the gel to help remove the rest of the polish off.

To start the removal process, you want to soak a cotton ball in acetone and saturate the nail for about five to ten minutes. To do this, you place the soaked cotton ball on your nail (you only need a bit of cotton), and then wrap your finger nails with tin foil to ensure the cotton stays in placed and the gel soaks up the acetone! (You may need help with this part, do not worry if you can’t do it all by yourself!)

If the colour hasn’t completely lifted after you soak it, you may use a wooden stick or a proper stainless steel dual cuticle pusher, which you can use to gently scrape the rest of the gels off.

To smoothen your nails, you can use a nail buffer to ensure you don’t have any ridges and to increase the blood circulation to the nail bed.

The final step is to ensure that any lost moisture from your nails is replenished! To re-hydrate the nails from the dehydrating impact of acetone, wash your hands and apply cuticle oil to the nail and cuticles. This will keep them strong and healthy.