at home builder gel removal.

Quick Links:
supplies  •  instructions  •  video tutorial

Here are two kits that include everything below EXCEPT FOR THE ACETONE & CUTICLE OIL:

If you want to buy items separately....


Note - many of these items I could not find at my local pharmacy (tried CVS & Target), so recommend ordering online to be sure you have what you need.

1. 2 Nail Files: 1 Super Gritty (100/180 Grit) & 1 Smoother Grit (200+ Grit)


2. 100% Acetone (this will not work with a non-acetone remover)


3. Tin Foil

If you don't have tin foil at home and don't want to buy any:


4. Cotton Balls or Pads/Rounds - I prefer Pads. (if pads - cut into quarters, if balls - pull apart to divide into halves or quarters depending on size)


5. Metal Cuticle Pusher or Orange/Birchwood Stick

6. Cuticle Oil


Bonus Items:

7. Nail Buff/Shine Block or File

8. Cuticle Remover

 how to soak off your gel at home: 
I recommend working one hand at a time for steps 1 - 6.

1. Start by shortening your nails. Use the grittiest side of your highest-grit file to remove some of the length. You do not need to be worried about shape here, just get some of the length down


2. Take the same file and buff as much of the shiny top coat and color off of your nail as possible. You don't want to break through to your natural nail, but you do want to get most of the gel color off.

3. Soak a cotton ball or a quarter of a cotton round in 100% acetone and place it on the nail.  Take a clip, or a square of tin foil (my preference) 

4. Wait AT LEAST 15 minutes.

5. Check the first nail you wrapped.  Remove the foil or clip and using your cuticle pusher or orangewood (or birchwood) stick, run it along the surface of the nail, using gentle pressure to scrape off the gel.  If it is not budging at all, soak new cotton in acetone and wait another 5-10 minutes.  If it is starting to come off easily, work one nail at a time, removing the foil and gently scraping off as much gel as you can.

6. Once you have gotten as much gel as will come off without a lot of force, if there is still a lot remaining, you may soak your nails again.  If there is only a little gel remaining, grab your next file (medium grit of 200+) to gently buff the surface of the nail to remove what is remaining.  Working from lowest grit number to highest grit number continue to gently buff the nail with your medium, then fine grit files until the nail plate is relatively smooth. You DO NOT need to remove all the gel - if there is some left on the nail plate that is OK.

7. Repeat on your other hand.

8. (Bonus Step) Take Sally Hansen cuticle remover and liberally apply it to the cuticle area on all 10 fingers.  Wait about 30 seconds then use your cuticle pusher to gently push back your cuticle.  Wipe away with a paper towel once complete.

9. Apply cuticle oil ALL over nail & cuticle including on and under your nail plate.  Repeat this step EVERY DAY, several times a day for eternity.

 video tutorial: