Learn how to properly remove gel polish at home

Gel polish has transformed the nail industry. Traditional polish tends to chip quickly, making frequent touchups a necessity. In contrast, gel polish looks fresh for weeks. Although the increased wear time is convenient, the polish can be difficult to remove safely at home without expert guidance.
The following video offers helpful advice and tips for protecting your nails during the process. Acetone, the active ingredient in nail polish remover, can be very harsh on surrounding skin, so apply cuticle oil as recommended before attempting to remove gel polish.
- Coarse nail file
- Cuticle oil
- 100% acetone
- Cotton balls
- Aluminum foil
Fierce League
1. File the tops of the nails with the file to remove the shiny surface. You should almost be able to see through the polish. (This will make the polish porous enough for the acetone to penetrate.)
2. Protect cuticles from the acetone with a liberal coat of cuticle oil all around the nails.
3. Soak a cotton ball in acetone and place it on the nail, and wrap the tip of each finger with aluminum foil. Repeat on each finger.
4. Wait 10 to 15 minutes for the acetone to soften the gel polish, and remove the foil to see if the polish is crumbling or peeling. If it is, proceed to the next step. If not, rewrap the foil and check again after a few minutes.
5. Remove the foil and cotton balls. Lightly buff away the peeling polish with the nail file. Don't file too aggressively because you'll damage the nail bed.
6. Wash and dry your hands to remove excess nail dust, and apply cuticle oil once more to restore the cuticle's moisture.