Having long and shapely nails is a matter of pride for many women. However, not all women are lucky enough to have long natural nails. If your nails don’t grow well or break often since they’re weak, acrylic nails can be a great option to enhance the appearance. Acrylic nails are charming and delightful. They hold well and endure through the trials and tribulations of the day.
Acrylic extensions are applied with the help of a professional who is trained in this task. The good news is that, removing acrylic nails is an easy task and you can always do the job yourself without going back to the salon.
Removing Acrylic Nails
Procedure 1: Using Acetone
Things required: Medium-sized glass bowl, pure acetone, nail clippers, nail buffer, petroleum jelly, olive oil or a strong hand moisturizer, and waste newspaper.
1. Find a comfortable, steady, flat work area, like a kitchen table where you’ll have a lot of space and a strong support to rest your hands on.
2. Spread 2 – 3 sheets of newspaper on the table to prevent damage due to acetone spills. You can also use a plastic sheet to cover the area.
3. Clip your nails as short as possible. Using a filer, file any gel or top coat on acrylic nail.
4. Pour the pure acetone into your glass bowl. Use enough acetone so that your fingers can be completely submerged.
5. Apply petroleum jelly on the skin around your fingernails and any skin on your fingers that will be in contacts with the acetone. This will provide a barrier to protect against the harshness of the acetone. Make sure your nails don’t get any petroleum jelly on them because it will prevent acetone from reacting to your nails.
6. Dip your fingers in the bowl. Make sure the nails are completely submerged. Leave your fingers for 15-20 minutes. This is extremely important because acetone works by loosening the nail glue that was used to apply your nails. Gently rub your nails against one another while they’re soaking to help loosen the glue.
7. Take your fingers out after the 15-20 minutes, and try to gently peel the nails off. It’s extremely important that you don’t use excessive force to peel the nails off. Your natural nails may suffer. If the nails don’t come off easily, soak your fingers in the bowl for 5-10 more minutes.
8. If a small amount of nail glue is still left on your hands, use the nail buffer to remove it. Be sure to use a light touch to prevent your nails from getting damaged.
9. After the entire acrylic coat is scraped off your nails, wash your hands thoroughly with warm, soapy water to remove even the slightest trace of acetone. After this, pat dry your hands with a clean towel.
10. The whole process or removing acrylic nails tends to dry the skin, as you will be dipping your fingers in acetone. Also, scrapping your nails and washing hands removes moisture. To replenish your skin with the moisture that was lost, apply olive oil or hand moisturizer and gently massage into your hands.
Alternatively, instead of soaking your fingers in acetone, you can take 10 cotton balls dipped in acetone and then place one on each fingernail. Wrap each fingertip with foil wraps to hold the cotton balls in place. Leave them for 15-20 minutes. Continue with the above mentioned acrylic nail removal procedure.
Procedure 2: Acetone-Free Lacquer Removers
Instead of soaking your nails in acetone, you can always go for other commercially available products most of which are acetone-free. The products works by breaking down the glue that sticks acrylic nails to your natural nails.
Follow the previous method (1) of acrylic nail remover as discussed above but this time use acetone-free lacquer remover instead of pure acetone.
Procedure 3: Using a File
This method requires some patience since you need to wait until your naturals nails grow long enough to show more than the acrylic.
Requirements: acrylic nail clipper, 4-sided buffer, cuticle clipper, nail buffer, cuticle oil and hand moisturizer.
1. Once your natural nails are long enough, use the acrylic nail-clipper to shorten your artificial nails. Avoid using a regular nail clipper, since this can crack the nails midway.
3. Using the large-grain side of your 4-sided buffer, file the acrylic nails down. Continue filing away as much acrylic from the nails as possible. This might take some time. Your nails should now appear as simply a stronger layer of your natural nail.
4. There will still be a tiny gap between your natural nail and the acrylic. If you’re worried about nail damage, you can stop for now. Simply wait until your natural nails grow, and clip as they grow.
5. If you wish to continue, use the clipper to clip the edges of the acrylic, and move towards the center. Continue clipping until the entire acrylic nail is gone. Be very gently as too much prying can damage your natural nails.
6. Buff your nails with a nail buffer to smooth out the last layer of acrylic so it blends with your natural nail.
7. Wash your hands with clean, soapy water and then dry with a towel. Apply your cuticle oil and hand lotion on your hands and fingers and you’re done.
Procedure 4: Using Dental Floss
This process requires a partner because you will need extra hands to work with the dental floss.
Requirements: cuticle stick, dental floss, nail buffer, cuticle oil and hand cream.
1. Using a cuticle stick, gently pry up the bottom edge of acrylic nails.
2. Let your partner slide the dental floss under the bottom edge of your acrylic nails. For best results, your partner needs to face you while slipping the dental floss. He/she will then hold the 2 ends of the floss.
3. Your partner will then start working the dental floss back and forth under the acrylic nail, so that it begins to loosen. Continue working until you remove acrylic nails from your natural nails.
4. Buff your nails with a nail buffer to smooth out any layer of acrylic.
5. Wash your hands and apply the cuticle oil and hand cream on your hands and fingers.
CAUTION! Be very careful when using dental floss to scrape off acrylic nails. This method can be painful and might damage the surface of your natural nails.