Acrylic nails look fantastic when you first leave the nail salon but they aren't impervious to wear and tear. Some people find that acrylic nails make them feel smothered or even numb the nail beds in an uncomfortable manner. If you've decided to remove your acrylic nails, it's best to revisit the salon but removing them yourself is possible. The goal is to remove the fake nails while reducing damage to your true nails. You can accomplish this through the soaking method.
- Find a cozy spot to work at. You'll be soaking those nails for a while so sit in comfy chair.
- Cover the table or work area with a towel to protect it from the acetone. This common product is easy to find at a pharmacy or a beauty shops but you still need to use caution with it. Only use it in a well-ventilated and don't spill it on fabrics - it will discolor it.
- Wash your hands and dry them well. Rub the cuticle area of the nail with petroleum jelly. Don't rub the jelly on the nails. The petroleum jelly will provide a protective barrier to your skin.
- Pour the acetone in a shallow glass bowl. Soak your fingernails in the acetone but don't immerse your entire hand in the liquid. If you have a cut or scrape on your fingers near the nail bed, you should wait until this heals. Acetone will burn if poured into a wound.
- Soften the nail bond in the liquid for about 15 to 20 minutes. Pry the nail from the nail bed using a cuticle stick. You may have to wedge from both sides, the left and right. If the nail is stubborn and won't budge, soak the nail another 10 minutes and try again.
- Use a cotton ball soaked in acetone to wipe away some of the acrylic glue from the nail bed after you remove the nail.
- Wash your hands and dry them with a soft towel.
- Buff away bits of acrylic glue with a nail buffer but don't bare down too hard. The nail will naturally be brittle and won't hold up to much more wear and tear.
- Rub your hands, especially the nail areas with a moisturizer.
Allow your nails to strengthen before replacing the nails or applying several coats of nail polish. A protective clear coat will be okay but don't overload the nail while it's trying to heal.
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