How Do Salons Remove Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails have been a popular fashion trend for years, enhancing the beauty of countless hands with their stylish designs and durability.

However, there comes a time when you may need to part ways with your acrylics and get them professionally removed.

In this article, we will explore the step-by-step process of how salons remove acrylic nails safely and effectively.

What are Acrylic Nails?

Before delving into the removal process, let’s first understand what acrylic nails are.


Acrylic nails are artificial enhancements applied to natural nails using a mixture of polymer powder and liquid monomer.

Nail technicians sculpt the mixture onto the nail, creating a sturdy and long-lasting extension that can be shaped and colored to suit individual preferences.

The Process of Applying Acrylic Nails

To appreciate the removal process fully, it’s essential to know how acrylic nails are applied. Nail technicians typically follow these steps:

  1. Nail Preparation: The natural nails are cleaned, trimmed, and filed to create an ideal base for the acrylic application.
  2. Applying the Acrylic Mixture: Using a brush, the nail technician applies the acrylic mixture to the nail, sculpting it into the desired shape.
  3. Curing: The acrylic mixture air-dries and hardens, forming a strong and durable extension.
  4. Shaping and Polishing: Once cured, the nails are shaped, buffed, and polished to achieve a glossy finish.

Advantages of Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails offer several advantages, making them a preferred choice for many:

  1. Durability: Acrylic nails are known for their resilience and can withstand daily activities better than natural nails.
  2. Versatility: They can be customized with various shapes, lengths, and designs to match individual styles.
  3. Longevity: When properly maintained, acrylic nails can last for several weeks, reducing the need for frequent touch-ups.

Potential Risks of Acrylic Nails

While acrylic nails have their merits, they also come with certain risks:

  1. Nail Damage: The filing and application process can weaken the natural nails, leading to thinning and breakage.
  2. Allergic Reactions: Some individuals may be allergic to the chemicals present in the acrylic mixture.
  3. Fungal Infections: If water or debris gets trapped between the acrylic and natural nails, it can lead to fungal growth.

How Do Salons Remove Acrylic Nails?

Now that we understand what acrylic nails are and how they are applied, let’s focus on the main topic: How do salons remove acrylic nails safely and professionally?

Professional Nail Removal vs. DIY

While some may attempt DIY methods, it’s highly recommended to visit a professional salon for acrylic nail removal.

Trained technicians possess the expertise and proper tools to perform the process without causing damage to your natural nails.

Steps for Safe Acrylic Nail Removal

The following steps outline the safe and effective process of removing acrylic nails at a salon:

Step 1: Filing the Acrylic Nails

The first step involves filing the surface of the acrylic nails. This helps to break the seal and removes the shiny top coat.

Step 2: Soaking the Nails

Next, the technician soaks the nails in acetone for about 15-20 minutes. Acetone is a nail-safe solvent that helps to soften the acrylic, making it easier to remove.

Step 3: Gently Removing the Acrylics

After soaking, the nail technician uses a cuticle pusher or a gentle scraping tool to lift and remove the softened acrylic gently.

Aftercare Tips for Healthy Nails

Once the acrylic nails are successfully removed, taking care of your natural nails is crucial to ensure their health and strength:

  • Keep the nails moisturized with cuticle oil to promote hydration and prevent dryness.
  • Avoid excessive use of nail polish immediately after removal to allow the nails to breathe.
  • Give your nails a break from acrylics for a few weeks to promote natural growth.

Do all nail salons remove acrylic nails

Not all nail salons remove acrylic nails. While many nail salons offer acrylic nail services, some may specialize in other types of nail treatments and may not have the necessary tools or expertise for acrylic removal.

It’s always a good idea to check with the salon beforehand or inquire about their services to ensure they provide acrylic nail removal.

If a salon does not offer this service, they may be able to recommend another nearby salon that does.

Additionally, some individuals prefer to remove their acrylic nails at home using proper techniques or seek professional help from a specialized nail technician or nail salon that specifically offers acrylic nail removal services.

How to remove salon acrylic nails at home

To remove salon acrylic nails at home, follow these steps:

  1. Gather Supplies: Get acetone-based nail polish remover, a nail file, aluminum foil, cotton balls, and cuticle oil.
  2. File the Nails: Use a nail file to gently thin down the top layer of the acrylic nails.
  3. Soak Nails in Acetone: Soak cotton balls in acetone, place them on your nails, and wrap each fingertip with aluminum foil.
  4. Wait and Remove: Leave them on for 15-20 minutes, then remove the foils and cotton balls.
  5. Gently Scrape: Gently scrape off softened acrylic with an orange stick or cuticle pusher.
  6. Moisturize: Apply cuticle oil to hydrate your nails after removal.

Remember, be patient and avoid forceful techniques to protect your natural nails.


Acrylic nails are a fantastic way to achieve beautiful and glamorous nails. However, their removal requires care and precision to prevent damage to the natural nails.

By visiting a professional salon and following proper aftercare, you can enjoy healthy and stunning natural nails.

FAQ – How Do Salons Remove Acrylic Nails

Can I remove acrylic nails at home?

While it is possible to remove acrylic nails at home, it is advisable to visit a professional salon for safe and damage-free removal.

Will removing acrylic nails damage my natural nails?

When done correctly, professional removal minimizes the risk of damage to your natural nails. However, improper removal techniques can lead to weakening and breakage.

How long does it take to remove acrylic nails at a salon?

The removal process usually takes around 30 to 45 minutes, depending on the complexity and condition of the acrylics.

Can I get new acrylic nails immediately after removal?

It’s best to allow your natural nails to breathe and recover for a few weeks before getting new acrylic nails.

How long should I soak my nails in acetone?

The recommended soaking time is usually 15-20 minutes. However, the duration may vary depending on the thickness of the acrylic and the specific brand of acetone used.

Is it safe to use an electric drill at home for acrylic removal?

Using an electric drill at home for acrylic removal can be risky, as it requires skill and caution to avoid damaging your natural nails. It is best to leave electric drill usage to trained professionals in a salon setting.

Can I reapply acrylic nails immediately after removal?

It’s advisable to give your natural nails a break after acrylic removal. Wait at least a week or two to allow your nails to recover and strengthen before applying a new set of acrylics.

Will removing acrylic nails damage my natural nails?

When done correctly, the removal process should not cause significant damage to your natural nails. However, improper or forceful removal techniques can lead to nail thinning and brittleness.

Can I use regular nail polish remover to take off acrylics?

However, acetone-based nail polish removers are more suitable for this task. Regular nail polish remover is not effective for removing acrylic nails, as it lacks the necessary strength to dissolve the acrylic material.

Are there any natural alternatives to acetone for removal?

While acetone is the most effective option for removing acrylic nails, some natural alternatives like vinegar or lemon juice may help soften the acrylic, but the removal process may take longer.

Can I use the electric drill for other nail treatments?

Yes, an electric drill can be used for various nail treatments, such as shaping nails, removing gel polish, or reducing thickness. However, it should be used with caution and proper training.

Can I cut the acrylic nails instead of filing or soaking them?

Cutting acrylic nails is not recommended, as it may cause the acrylic to splinter or crack, making removal more difficult. Filing or soaking the nails is a safer and more effective method.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x