How To Remove Press-On Nails

Written by Shalini Roy

Press-on nails are false nails that are applied to the cuticle (the skin at the end of the nail) to create a professional-looking manicure. While they are fun to flaunt, removing them can be a hassle. Improper removal can thin out your nails or cause splitting. Also, you do not want to rip them off or damage your natural nails. Worry not! We have got 10 easy ways to remove your press-on nails safely. Let’s check out what they are. Keep reading.

How Do Press-On Nails Work?

Press-on nails are generally made of acrylic, gel polish, or other hard substances, glued onto the fingers with nail adhesives. They work by using an adhesive activated by air, so all you need to do is press them on. Ensure you buy the same brand, so they fit well. Peel the top layer of paper, and gently press it down onto your natural nail until you hear a click.

It is best to use a nail file to push back the cuticles and clean up the skin around your natural nails before applying press-on nails. The good thing about these fake nails is they are peelable and easy to remove. Also, since they are very thin, you can easily file them off.

These nails are made from a special plastic resin that makes them easy to wear and remove. So, when you need them off for some reason, like if they break or get too dirty (which can happen more frequently than you might think), follow the methods in our next section.

10 Ways To Remove Press-On Nails

1. Use Cotton Balls

One of the most difficult things about removing press-on nails is ensuring the base coat has been fully soaked so that it can detach from the natural nail. One trick is to cut a cotton ball into thirds, soak them in acetone, and wrap them around each nail with tin foil. The sharp tip will keep your fingers out of trouble, and the acetone will work its magic while you go about your day.

2. Use Nail Glue Remover

Clean the glue on your natural nail with some cotton balls soaked in acetone. Apply adhesive tape on the glued parts and wait for about 15 minutes. Take off the tape and soak the nails in acetone to remove adhesive residue. This method is easy and convenient. However, it can damage your nails if not done the right way.

3. Use A Nail Clipper

This method may sound crazy, but it works well if your nails are not too thick. Cut off as much of the glue as you can and use a nail file to remove any leftovers. Finish by removing the glue residue with an alcohol swab.

4. Buff Your Nails

This is the fastest way to remove press-on nails, but be careful not to damage your nails. While taking off the nail polish, use a nail file to gently rub down the top layer of your natural fingernails to remove excess glue and make them even.

5. Try A Nail Drill Machine

No matter how good you are with your manicure, it is almost impossible to safely remove press-on nails without cutting yourself with nail clippers or scissors. If you are going to do this anyway, why not use the machine to make it safe and easy? The process is much easier than you might think.

6. Use Olive Oil

Olive oil is great for removing glue residue from natural nails without irritating your skin or fingers. Soak some cotton balls in olive oil and secure each nail with one. Let them sit for 10 minutes. Lift your press-on nails from the nail beds using a gentle rocking motion.

7. Use An Orange Stick

Use a pair of tweezers to pull each fake nail away from the sides of your fingernails. Then, gently push them out using an orange stick. When you are done, use an alcohol swab to remove the glue residue.

8. Use Soap And Water

Fill a bowl with warm water and add a bit of liquid dishwashing soap. Hold each fake nail down in soapy water for 5 to 10 seconds. Slide them off carefully, along with any leftover glue residue. Finish up by washing your natural nails in soap water to remove traces of solvent.

9. Use Baking Soda

Mix two parts baking soda and one part water until it takes the shape of thick cream. Rub this cream on your fake nails with an orange stick and wait for five minutes. Let the cream soak into glue residue. Slide off each press-on nail with glue residue. Wash your natural nails with soap and water to remove any trace of residue.

10. Visit A Nearby Salon

If you are not sure if you can take off your fake nails safely at home, visit a nearby salon and let the experts help you out. They are experienced in what they are doing and will ensure that your natural nails are in good condition.

The Takeaway

Unlike acrylics or gels, removing press-on nails is convenient at home. However, the challenging part is getting them off without hurting yourself or damaging your natural nails since they are not really attached. If you want to get them off, just wet them with your fingers and peel them off in one piece – it is a lot easier than filing off fake nails.

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

How long do press-on nails last?

The average lifespan of press-on nails is one week. However, you can make them last longer by not wearing them during long hours at work. But the longevity will vary widely depending on your use.

Can you shower with press-on nails?

Yes, you can shower with press-on nails. However, don’t soak your false nails for more than 10 minutes. Also, do not use harsh soaps or chemicals while wearing press-on nails.

Do press-on nails damage your natural nails?

No, press-on nails do not cause any damage to your natural fingernails or cuticles when applied the right way. However, if your fake nails are too long or you are applying them unevenly, you may experience nail damage.

Should I cut my nails before putting on press-on nails?

Yes, you must cut your natural nails before putting on press-on nails. Your fake nail needs to sit on top of a flat nail bed to adhere properly. If there’s a hangover from your natural nail, the press-on will be less secure. Remember, shorter nails are easier to maneuver while applying fake nails.

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