Ways to Remove Acrylic Nails Without Acetone at Home - Tips and Tricks

Do you have acrylic nails that need to be removed? If so, you may wonder how to do it without acetone. Acetone is a harsh chemical used to remove fake nails and can cause skin irritation or damage if not used properly.

Fortunately, some great alternatives are available if you want to take off your acrylic nails at home without acetone. In this blog post will explore some of the best ways to safely and effectively remove your false nails, whether glue-on or gel nails.

What is Acetone?

Acetone is a solvent commonly used in nail polish removers and other cleaning products. It's also known as propane-2-one or dimethyl ketone. The primary purpose of using acetone on false nails is to dissolve the glue that holds them in place.

However, it can dry and damage your skin and nails if used improperly or too often. Acetone also has a strong smell that can give some people headaches.

Why Use Acetone?

The main reason acetone is such a popular choice for removing fake nails is that it dissolves the adhesive quickly and easily. It also helps clean up any excess nail polish or debris on the surface of the nail bed.

Acetone removes acrylics quickly and effectively, but it's essential to use caution when handling this solvent as it can cause irritation or damage to the skin. Some people are allergic to acetone, so it's helpful to know what's available to use instead.

What Kind of False Nails are Available?

Acrylic False Nails

Acrylics are possibly the most well-liked artificial nail. The acrylic brush, used to apply the polymer and monomer combination, is where acrylic nails get their name. Acrylic false nails are tough and robust, making them a popular choice for those who want false nails that will last.

Gel False Nails

Another type of false nails is false gel nails. These false nails consist of a resin-based polymer gel (which contains no liquid monomer) formed over the natural nail with a UV or LED lamp during the curing process. Gel false nails provide excellent strength and flexibility while maintaining an ultra-glossy finish.

Press-on False Nails

Press-on false nails are perfect if you want a quick fix to spruce up your manicure. These pre-made false fingernails come ready with adhesive backing pre-applied, and they're easy to remove without needing any special tools.

Nail Wraps

Nail wraps are for people who like natural-looking nails. These nails are often shorter and made from expensive materials like silk and linen combined with nail glue. Nail wraps allow your false nails to look as natural as possible, lasting up to two weeks.


Shellac is more of a treatment, it is not false nails, but it is a great way to extend the life of your manicure. You can use shellac by adding an extra layer of protection over the nail with a base coat, colour and top coat. The shellac will make your false nails last longer.

All these types of false nails need to be removed at some point. Read on to find out how…

How to Remove Acrylic Nails Without Acetone

Fortunately, there are several ways you can remove your false nails without using acetone. Here are some of the most time and money-saving ways to do it:

1. Non-Acetone Nail Polish and False Nail Remover

Non-acetone remover is made of an alcohol-based solution and is less harsh than its acetone counterpart. Non-acetone remover dissolves the glue on your false nails without causing too much damage to the underlying skin and nail bed.

Non-acetone nail polish removers may contain less harsh chemicals, but you can still use them to remove false nails. Do bear in mind that they may take a bit longer than acetone.

To use this method, apply a generous amount of non-acetone remover onto the surface of your acrylic nails and wait for it to dissolve the glue. Once it does, you should be able to peel off the fake nails easily.

We love Elegant Touch Nail Polish Remover Pads because they are simple to use and don't contain any acetone.

2. Hot, Soapy Water

Soap and water are another great way to remove acrylics without harsh chemicals or solvents. Simply fill a bowl or sink with hot, soapy water and soak your nails for about 10 minutes. Soaking will help soften the adhesive and make it quicker to remove the false nails.

Once you've soaked your nails, use a cotton pad or swab to peel off the fake nail from its base gently. If any stubborn bits are left over, you can use tweezers or a cuticle pusher to remove them.

We love Elegant Touch Professional Cuticle Pusher and Nail Cleaner to help remove the nails, and if you need a tweezer, we suggest Elegant Touch Professional Slanted Tweezer. In fact, the entire Elegant Touch range is fantastic.

3. Cuticle Oil

Cuticle oil is a blend of natural oils such as jojoba and almond, which helps to soften the glue on false nails.

Cuticle oil is excellent if you want something gentler than acetone remover, soap, or hot water. Cuticle oil keeps your cuticles healthy and moisturized, but removes acrylics without damaging the skin underneath.

Apply a few drops of cuticle oil onto the base of each nail and wait for it to soak in. This should help soften the glue and make it easier to peel off the false nails.

4. Nail File

If you don't have access to any of the above methods, you can also try using a nail file. A course-grit file will help break down the acrylic and allow you to remove it more easily without resorting to acetone or other harsh chemicals. Use your nail file in a back-and-forth motion until all of the acrylics have been removed from your nails.

Using a nail file on its own has to be a last resort, as it will damage the natural nail underneath. So, you should always try to use a gentler method first before resorting to this one.

Not all nail files are made equally. The best nail files are Elegant Touch Professional Nail Files (two in a pack) and Nail HQ Coloured Nail Files (four in a box).

Here are some other tools you might need…

5. Combine All Four Steps

There's nothing to say you can't use all four steps together to take off your acrylics. If you have access to all the materials and want to complete them as quickly as possible, try combining them!

For example, start by soaking your nails in hot, soapy water for a few minutes. Once they are soft, use a cotton pad or swab with non-acetone remover or cuticle oil to help dissolve any stubborn bits of glue that may remain.

Once the adhesive is removed, you can use a nail file to remove any remaining acrylic bits from your nails. This combination of steps should make it easier and less time-consuming for you to remove your false nails without acetone.

Final Thoughts on How to Remove Acrylic Nails Without Acetone at Home

At this point, we should stress that you should visit your nail technician to have your salon-applied gel nails removed. In theory, removing gel nails without acetone is possible, but in reality, it may cause more damage than is good for your natural nails.

Removing other false nails (acrylics and stick-on) without acetone is possible using the correct methods. Non-acetone nail polish remover, hot soapy water, cuticle oil and a nail file are all great options that won't damage your skin or natural nails. Bear in mind that some of these methods (like using a nail file) may take longer than acetone, but they'll help keep your nails healthy.

So, it's up to you which method suits you best! With the above techniques, there's no reason you can't remove acrylic nails without acetone. Just remember to be patient and gentle when removing your false nails, and don't forget to follow up with an excellent moisturizer to help keep your skin healthy.

Now your fingers are naked; it must be time to introduce you to our favourite Kiss Nails Collection. We love all of these…

We love Kiss because, according to their LinkedIn profile - KISS is a Korean-American business with its headquarters in New York. KISS takes excellent satisfaction in being the world's leading provider of high-quality beauty goods, especially false nails and their renowned kiss lash collection.

John Chang founded KISS in 1989 as a small business selling beauty supplies. The KISS founder's goal is to create DIY beauty products that help women save time, money, and effort.

We love KISS, but we also adore Ardell Nails, Elegant Touch, SOSU Nails, Nail HQ and W7 for every kind of stick-on nails in every colour and design.