How to Remove Acrylic Nails at Home

Today I wanted to share how I remove acrylic nails at home. The process is simple, cheap, and only took an hour so I decided to share with you!

Over my winter break I got an acrylic manicure for the first time in a long time. When I got back to school I quickly realized acrylic nails weren’t going to work. Although I would love to wear acrylic nails all the time, fills get expensive and I’m on a law school budget. Also, part of being successful on law school exams is the ability to type fast. Stiletto nails are beautiful but they slow down my word per minute lol. I needed to remove my acrylic nails fast.

I thought about going back to the salon but had flashbacks of the last two traumatic times I had acrylic nails removed. Once time the nail tech broke my acrylic nails with jewelry pliers. Yes. Pliers. Another time a nail tech slid a fake nail tip between my real nail and acrylic nails until the acrylic nails came off. Both experiences resulted in emotional trauma and ruined nails. I decided rather than pay for emotional and physical abuse it would be better to remove my nails myself.

You’ll need the following things to remove acrylic nails at home. 100% acetone nail polish remover, cotton balls, a coarse nail file, nail clippers, a nail buffer, and a small bowl to soak your nails in (I use an old shot glass). You can find all these things at your local beauty supply or have them delivered to by Amazon.


To prep my nails for acrylic nail removal I removed my nail polish with the acetone nail polish remover and cotton balls. I also clipped my nails shorter, although that step is mandatory. Next, I filed the entire acrylic nail with the coarse nail file. I do this in order to remove the nail color, remove some of the thickness of the acrylic, and make it easy for the acetone to do it’s work.


Once my acrylic nails were cleaned, shortened, and filed it was time to soak. I pour my acetone nail polish remover in a shot glass because that makes for the easiest clean up. Make sure you use something the acetone will not eat through and you won’t be eating or drinking out of.

I typically soak each hand separately for at least 30 minutes. I make sure to only dip the part of my nail covered in acrylic into the acetone. Although you may need to file some stubborn sections of acrylic off, after 30 minutes your nails should be acrylic free.

If you’re pressed for time, you can warm the acetone up, by running under hot water. This will speed up the whole process.


To finish up the process I buff my nails and apply a coat of Sally Hansen Maximum Growth Treatment. (Sally Hansen Maximum Growth Treatment is a product I ALWAYS use because it makes weak nails strong). I finish with a coat of top coat and a little cuticle oil. What’s your favorite method of acrylic nail removal? Would you ever remove acrylic nails at home? Let me know below!


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  • Reply Jeannette

    Live your site, look seeing more of your work.

    March 5, 2018 at 11:14 AM
  • Reply Nelly B.

    I don’t get may nails done often admitted, but would removing the arcylic at home be as effective as getting it removed at the salon?

    March 6, 2018 at 11:49 AM
    • Reply

      Yep! Using my method the acrylic came off easily and much more pain free than they would have at the salon!

      March 6, 2018 at 12:27 PM
  • Reply Shauna

    I hate getting acrylics for this reason! I have no patience! LOL

    March 6, 2018 at 1:55 PM
  • Reply Shelby

    I’ve gotten them removed both at home and in the salon. i prefer the salon because I’m too impatient when doing it myself! But I hate the process either way!

    March 6, 2018 at 5:15 PM
  • Reply Sydney

    Hm I’ve never thought of doing that last step. I need to hip myself

    March 6, 2018 at 10:57 PM
  • Reply Ashtyn

    I needed to read this! I always take my own acrylics off and it never looks pretty. Hopefully I have the patience to do this the next time I get them done lol

    March 7, 2018 at 2:31 PM
  • Reply kanchipuram silk sarees

    nice post

    August 6, 2018 at 10:13 AM
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