At 14 Day Mani we've been asked many times whether its safe or ok to remove gel nail polish at home, and what the risks are (if any). We completely relate to any fears or apprehension around this topic as salons make it appear like a complex and rigorous task that can't be completed by anyone but a qualified professional.
However, this is not the case! It is totally possible to remove gel polish at home on your own, as an unqualified novice without risking any harm to your natural nail. In this blog we sit down with professional manicurist Julita to answer some of your most asked questions and help quell any anxieties around the subject of risks of removing gel polish at home, by yourself.
1. How can I best remove gel polish myself, at home?
Julita says: "Removing your gel polish at home can be done quickly, and safely, when using the correct products and tools.
The first step is to file away the shiny or matte Topcoat that was applied to act as a protective barrier, aiding in the extended wear of your gel polish application. This can be done using a 180 grit file or buffer.
After removing the Topcoat layer, you can then apply your removal method of choice. The most widely used method of gel polish removal is an acetone soak. This is done by placing your acetone in a glass bowl and soaking your nails for a few minutes to begin the process of removal. Foil wraps are also a very popular alternative for gel polish removal, and also prevents unnecessary waste of product. 14 Day Manicure’s Gel Polish Remover Wraps and Acetone Remover are amazing for this process as you simply soak the cotton pad in the acetone and wrap this around your nail beds.
After a few minutes, you can gently scrape the gel polish away using a Cuticle Pusher. Repeat this process as needed until all gel product has been removed".
2. What are the risks of removing gel nails at home?
Julita says: "If done incorrectly, gel polish removal at home can cause the nails to become thinner, weaker and/ or more brittle. This can occur when gel polish is peeled off of the nails as, in doing so, layers of the nail plate are also being peeled away as well. This can take months to recover from and will also lead to product retention issues - your next gel polish application may not last as long as the product cannot properly adhere to your nails. An acetone soak or gel remover, like 14 Day Mani's, is always recommend to maintain natural nail health".
3. If I've picked my gels off and my nails are looking damaged underneath, what steps can I take to improve my nail health?
Julita says: "Damaged nails will need time and care to recover and regain their strength. Using Cuticle Oil 2-3 times daily will greatly improve your nails over period of time; keeping your nails hydrated will greatly contribute to your nails recovery. At this stage, it is recommended to keep the nails at a manageable length to avoid further damage to your nail beds due to its weakened state.
Using Builder Gel is an amazing way to add extra strength to your gel polish manicure. While Builder Gel is not a cure for weak or brittle nails, its strengthening properties assist in a longer lasting enhancement for the duration of wear.
14 Day Manicure has a large range of Builder Gels and Gel Polishes to choose from, as well as the relative kits which will include all products needed for your Builder Gel or Gel Polish application, as well as the accompanying removal products. This is a great and affordable range to add to your at-home nail journey".