how to take off acrylic nails at home without acetone
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Nail Guide: How to Take Off Acrylic Nails At Home Without Acetone

Acrylic nails have become very common among women across the world mainly because of their outstanding designs, colors, and ability to add length to short, natural nails. But even as more women continue to accept these artificial nails, some concerns have been raised over the severity of chemicals like acetone that is used to remove them.

That’s why many women are now looking for better ways to remove their acrylic nails without these chemicals. This article tells you how to take off acrylic nails at home without acetone.

What Are Acrylic Nails?


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Also referred to as artificial nails, fake nails, nail extensions, nail enhancements, or fashion nails, acrylic nails are the extensions attached to your natural fingernails to add length and for other aesthetic purposes. Some of these fashion accessories come in designs that mimic your fingernails, while others are deliberately designed with unique shapes to give your fingernails an artistic appearance.

Unlike your natural fingernails, acrylic nails require consistent maintenance, with some nail artists advising women with artificial nails to go for nail upkeep every two weeks.

The good thing about acrylic nails is that they are comparatively more durable and offer better versatility concerning shape, length, and design than natural fingernails. It’s important to underscore the fact that artificial nails are just extensions attached to your fingernails, not replacements. These nail enhancements come in two main varieties: tips and forms.

Tips are light in weight because they are made from plastic plates and are normally attached to the tips of your fingernails. That’s why they are referred to as tips. They are available in numerous shapes, lengths, designs, and colors.

For instance, you can find tips in solid colors, such as gel or regular nail polish, and artistic colors like animal prints, metallic colors, and more.

Forms, on the other hand, are nail-shaped sheets with adhesive edges that are wrapped around your fingernails. They can be cut, shaped, or filled into different shapes, including rounded, almond, stiletto, square, ballerina, and squoval.

In general, acrylic nails are made from acrylic glass (PMMA) mixed with a melted monomer to form a malleable bead.

Is It Safe to Remove Your Acrylic Nails at Home?


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Despite the numerous vlogs, articles, blogs, and social media posts advising women on the benefits of wearing acrylic nails and how to take care of them, many women still don’t know how to safely remove their artificial nails at home.

Some even resort to biting and pulling off their acrylic nails. This is distressing because the first thing you should be concerned about before getting artificial nails is how to remove them safely.

But is it even safe to remove your acrylic nails at home? Although the short answer is yes, it comes with a caveat. You need to know how to remove your nail enhancements properly without putting your fingernails and the skin around them at risk of damage. Therefore, if you are not an experienced nail expert, you shouldn’t attempt to remove your acrylic nails at home.

The best solution is to go to your nail technician because they have the necessary skills and experience to remove your artificial nails without injuries. Seeking the help of a professional nail technician is important because your natural nails continue to grow even with the extensions. If you check your cuticles carefully a few days after getting artificial nails, you’ll notice signs of growth.

So, you should go to your preferred salon to have your artificial nails removed by professionals, especially if you’re not ready to have your acrylics restored immediately. If you are too busy to go to a salon, you should start by going through several useful acrylic nails removal tutorials before you start removing them yourself at home. These tutorials will give you an idea of how it should be done to avoid injuries.

How to Take Off Acrylic Nails At Home Without Acetone: 3 Ways

Although many professional nail technicians use acetone to remove acrylic nails, many health experts have raised concerns over its safety, claiming that it can easily cause the skin to dry out and crack. This is what medical experts refer to as dermatitis. So, you should avoid using acetone to remove acrylic nails at home. Here are the alternative ways of removing artificial nails at home.

1. Warm Water

Warm water has proved to be an effective solution to many cosmetic concerns, including removing artificial nails and getting rid of sticky makeup from your face. Many women refer to it as their “knight in the shining armor” for their nails. If you want to try it, you just need to pour warm water into a clean basin and add several drops of liquid soap to it.

Wait a few seconds for the soap to be dissolved completely and then soak your acrylic nails in the solution for about 20 minutes. Remove your nails from the solution and check if the glue attaching the artificial nails to your natural nails has loosened up. If it’s loose, use a stick to peel the nail enhancements off. But if the glue doesn’t loosen up in 20 minutes, warm the solution and soak your nails for another 10 minutes.

2. Cuticle Oil

This technique is comparatively more advanced than warm water and soap as it not only helps to remove acrylic nails but keeps your natural nails healthy and nourished. You just need to cover your acrylic nails with Q-tips that are soaked in cuticle oil for at least five minutes. Make sure the oil gets to the most hidden parts of your acrylic nails.

After five minutes, your artificial nails will start to come out and you should be able to remove them with an orange stick. You can even speed up the process by soaking the whole cotton ball in cuticle oil and instead of placing it on your nails, wrap it around the nails with tape. If you have tin foil, use it to cover your acrylic nails for a few minutes. This helps to loosen the artificial nails faster.

3. Dental Floss

A string of dental floss can help you to remove your acrylic nails, especially when you combine it with the other two methods mentioned above. You can either soak your fake nails in a mixture of warm water and liquid soap or cuticle oil for about 20 minutes and then slide dental floss under your acrylic nails. Move your floss from side to side to loosen your nail.

Once the nail is loose, pull it out slowly. Since the floss might damage your natural nails, treat them appropriately with some cuticle oil or any other nourishing lotion to keep them moisturized.

Tips for Caring for Your Nails After Removing Acrylics


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Your natural fingernails will need to be cared for when you remove the fake ones. This upkeep is important because acrylic nails can easily run down your real nails, leaving them looking weak and prone to breakage. Here are some quick tips on how to take care of your fingernails after removing the fake ones.

1. Trim Them

Once you remove your acrylic nails, you’ll notice that your natural nails have grown too long. Unfortunately, such nails are likely to break off because they are still weak and some of them are already dead. So, the best thing is to trim them to the right length and allow them to grow uniformly and with the right strength.

2. Harden Them

As mentioned above, your fingernails will feel too weak when you remove the artificial ones. Therefore, you need to find a way to harden them to prevent them from breaking off. Fortunately, there are many nail hardeners that you can use on your fingernails. Professional nail technicians advise their clients to apply a nail hardener daily for two weeks.

If you wear nail polish, you can apply it over the hardener and continue to use the hardener as your topcoat. After applying the hardener continuously for two weeks, you can reduce the application to at least once a week for a few months. This will bring your natural nails back to life.

3. Shape Them

Although you may be tempted to keep your natural nails in the shape of your preferred acrylic nails, you should not entertain that thought because your nails need to retain their natural shape. Shaping your fingernails in their natural form will enable them to grow quickly without defects.

4. Be Wary of Your Hyponychium

The hyponychium is beneath your nail bed that attaches your nail bed to your nail. The growth of this skin will be affected by your acrylic nails. So, you’ll be left with an overgrown hyponychium when you remove the fake nails. You shouldn’t remove this skin because it might become loose from the nail plate if you dig under your nails.

5. Hydrate Them

Since your natural nails will be left feeling weak when you remove the fake ones, you should hydrate them regularly with nourishing lotion. You should also moisturize your fingers and cuticles by drinking enough water daily.

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