How to Remove Acrylic Nails with Hot Water and Acetone

Acrylic NailsSource:


Acrylic nails have become a popular trend in the world of beauty and fashion. They offer a long-lasting and flawless manicure, making them a favorite choice for many individuals. However, there comes a time when you need to remove your acrylic nails and give your natural nails some breathing space. While there are various methods available, one effective way to remove acrylic nails is by using hot water and acetone. This article will guide you through the process, step-by-step.

Step 1: Gather the Required Supplies

Nail Polish RemoverSource:

Before you begin, make sure you have all the necessary supplies at hand. You will need:

  • An acetone-based nail polish remover
  • A bowl or basin
  • A kettle or pot to heat water
  • A towel or cloth
  • An orange stick or cuticle pusher
  • A nail file or buffer

Step 2: Prep your Nails

Prepping NailsSource:

Start by filing down the top layer of your acrylic nails using a nail file or buffer. This will help break the seal and allow the acetone to penetrate more effectively. Be gentle and avoid filing too aggressively, as it may damage your natural nails.

Step 3: Heat the Water

Heating WaterSource:

Fill a kettle or pot with water and heat it until it reaches a comfortable temperature. You want the water to be warm, but not scalding hot. Test the water using your wrist to ensure it is safe to use.

Step 4: Pour the Water into a Bowl

Water BowlSource:

Transfer the warm water into a bowl or basin that is large enough to accommodate your hands comfortably. The bowl should be deep enough to submerge your fingertips completely.

Step 5: Add Acetone to the Water

Acetone Nail Polish RemoverSource:

Pour an ample amount of acetone-based nail polish remover into the warm water. The acetone will help break down the acrylic nails, making them easier to remove. Ensure that the concentration of acetone is high enough for effective results.

Step 6: Soak your Nails

Soaking NailsSource:

Place your fingertips into the bowl, ensuring that the acrylic nails are fully submerged in the acetone-water mixture. Let your nails soak for approximately 15-20 minutes. This will give the acetone enough time to soften the acrylic nails.

Step 7: Check the Progress

Checking ProgressSource:

After the soaking time, gently try to lift the edges of the acrylic nails using an orange stick or cuticle pusher. If they are easily lifting, it means the acetone has done its job, and you can proceed to the next step. If the nails are still firmly attached, continue soaking for a few more minutes.

Step 8: Remove the Acrylic Nails

Removing Acrylic NailsSource:

Once the acrylic nails have sufficiently softened, carefully lift them off using the orange stick or cuticle pusher. Start from the sides and gently pry the nails off. Be patient and avoid forcing the nails off, as this can cause damage to your natural nails.

Step 9: Clean and Moisturize

Cleaning NailsSource:

After removing the acrylic nails, you may notice some residual adhesive or polish on your natural nails. Use a cotton pad soaked in nail polish remover to clean off any remaining residue. Once clean, thoroughly rinse your hands with warm water and pat them dry with a towel. Apply a moisturizer or cuticle oil to nourish and hydrate your nails.

Tips for a Successful Removal

Nail Care TipsSource:

Here are some additional tips to ensure a successful acrylic nail removal:

  • Use a high-quality acetone-based nail polish remover for better results.
  • Be patient during the soaking process to allow the acetone to fully penetrate and soften the acrylic nails.
  • Apply petroleum jelly or a protective barrier around your cuticles and fingertips to prevent excessive drying from the acetone.
  • Avoid forcefully pulling or ripping off the acrylic nails, as this can cause damage to your natural nails.
  • After removal, give your nails a break and allow them to recover before applying any new nail enhancements.


Removing acrylic nails with hot water and acetone is a simple and effective method. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can safely remove your acrylic nails at home without causing damage to your natural nails. Remember to take your time, be patient, and prioritize the health of your nails throughout the process. With proper care, your natural nails will be ready for their next manicure in no time!