How To Remove Acrylic Nails at Home

hand acrylic nails

Acrylic nails are a great way to add length and durability to your natural nails, but they do require maintenance and upkeep. One of the most important steps in the process is removing them properly. If you don’t remove your acrylic nails correctly, you risk damaging your natural nails, so it’s essential to know how to do it properly.

In this article, we’ll walk you through how to remove acrylic nails at home, step by step.

Supplies You’ll Need

Before you get started, you’ll need a few supplies. Here’s what you’ll need:


    Cotton balls or pads

    Aluminum foil

    A nail file

    A buffer block

    Cuticle oil


Step 1: File Your Acrylic Nails

The first step to removing acrylic nails is to file down the top layer of the acrylic. Use a coarse-grit nail file to file down the surface of the nails until they are no longer shiny. Be careful not to file down too much, as you don’t want to damage your natural nails underneath.

Step 2: Soak Your Nails in Acetone

Next, you’ll need to soak your nails in acetone. Acetone is a powerful solvent that will dissolve the acrylic nails. Fill a bowl with enough acetone to cover your nails, and then soak your fingertips in the acetone for 10-15 minutes.

To help the acetone penetrate the acrylic nails more easily, you can wrap each fingertip in a small piece of aluminum foil. This will create a sealed environment around your nails, which will help to speed up the process.

Step 3: Remove the Foil and Acrylic

After 10-15 minutes, remove the foil and acetone from your fingertips. Use a cotton ball or pad to gently wipe away the softened acrylic. You may need to use a little bit of pressure to remove the acrylic, but be careful not to force it off, as this can damage your natural nails.

If you’re having trouble removing the acrylic, you can soak your nails for a few more minutes and try again.

Step 4: Buff Your Nails

Once you’ve removed all of the acrylics, it’s time to buff your natural nails. Use a buffer block to smooth out any bumps or ridges on your nails. Be gentle, and don’t buff your nails too aggressively, as this can thin out your nails and make them more prone to breakage.

Step 5: Moisturize Your Nails

Acetone can be drying to your nails and cuticles, so it’s essential to moisturize them after you’ve removed the acrylic nails. Apply cuticle oil to your nails and cuticles to hydrate them and prevent them from becoming brittle.

Tips for Removing Acrylic Nails

Here are a few additional tips to keep in mind when removing acrylic nails at home:

  • Use pure acetone: Acetone is the most effective solvent for removing acrylic nails, so be sure to use pure acetone rather than a nail polish remover that contains acetone.
  • Be patient: Removing acrylic nails takes time, so don’t rush the process. Soaking your nails for longer than 10-15 minutes can be more effective, but don’t leave them in acetone for more than 30 minutes, as this can damage your natural nails.
  • Be gentle: When removing the acrylic, be gentle and patient. If you force the acrylic off, you risk damaging your natural nails underneath.
  • Take breaks: If you start to feel any discomfort or pain while removing your acrylic nails, take a break and give your nails a chance to rest before continuing the process.