How do I remove poly gel nails? Safely and Effectively

Poly gel nails have gained popularity in recent years for their versatility and ease of application. However, just like any other nail enhancement, there comes a time when you need to remove them. Unlike traditional acrylics or gels, poly gel is a bit different in terms of removal. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to safely and effectively remove poly gel nails.

Understanding Poly Gel Nails

  • Poly Gel: Poly gel is a hybrid nail enhancement product that combines the flexibility of gel and the strength of acrylic. It is typically applied using a slip solution and cured under a UV or LED lamp.

Step-by-Step Guide to Removing Poly Gel Nails

1. Gather Your Supplies:

  • Acetone
  • Cotton balls or pads
  • Aluminum foil
  • Nail file
  • Buffing block
  • Cuticle oil

2. Prepare Your Work Area:

  • Ensure you are working in a well-ventilated space to reduce the fumes from the acetone.

3. Buff the Surface:

  • Use a nail file or buffing block to remove the top shiny layer of the poly gel. This helps the acetone penetrate better.

4. Soak Cotton Balls in Acetone:

  • Cut the cotton balls or pads into pieces that will fit over your nails.
  • Soak each piece in acetone.

5. Place the Acetone-Soaked Cotton on Nails:

  • Place each acetone-soaked cotton piece over a nail.
  • Wrap each finger with aluminum foil to secure the cotton and prevent acetone evaporation.

6. Wait for Soaking:

  • Allow the nails to soak in acetone for approximately 15-20 minutes. This softens the poly gel for easier removal.

7. Check the Progress:

  • After the soaking time, gently press on the nails to check if the poly gel is loosening.

8. Gently Remove the Poly Gel:

  • Use an orangewood stick or a cuticle pusher to gently push off the softened poly gel. Be careful not to force or damage your natural nails.

9. Buff Any Remaining Residue:

  • If there's any residue left, gently buff the nail surface to remove it.

10. Moisturize and Apply Cuticle Oil:

  • Wash your hands and nails thoroughly to remove any acetone residue.
  • Apply a generous amount of cuticle oil to nourish and moisturize your nails and cuticles.

Tips for a Successful Removal

  • Avoid Force: Never force or pry the poly gel off your nails, as this can damage your natural nails.

  • Be Patient: Allow the acetone to do its job and soften the poly gel thoroughly before attempting to remove it.

  • Moisturize: After removal, ensure to moisturize your nails and cuticles to counteract the drying effects of acetone.


Removing poly gel nails can be done safely and effectively with the right tools and technique. By following this step-by-step guide and being patient during the removal process, you can maintain the health and integrity of your natural nails. Remember to moisturize and care for your nails after removal to keep them strong and beautiful.

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