How to Remove Press On Nails – 3 Easy Steps with Pictures

Updated on September 21, 2023
Tatiana Cooper By Tatiana Cooper
Tatiana Cooper

Expert writer, copywriter, and well-versed beauty and wellness enthusiast.

Table Of Contents

    How to Remove Press On NailsPIN

    How to Remove Press On Nails – 3 Easy Steps with Pictures

    Press-on nails can be a God-sent if you’re hoping to get funky nail patterns and color without the extra time and patience, long fake nails without breaking the bank, and perfectly manicured-looking hands without having to leave the comfort of your home.

    We all strive to upkeep some form of our beauty routines. For some people, it’s weekly face masks; for others, it may be having impeccable nails. Press-on nails are great; they cut price and time drastically, but everything comes with a cost, and removing press-on nails the right way is essential for your nail’s overall health.

    Regardless, having something over top of your natural nails isn’t great for them. However, properly removing press-on nails and keeping your natural nails clean and primed will ensure their health doesn’t deplete over time.

    Zohna Tip

    Instead of using press on nails every day, switch them out for a nail strengthener polish to ensure the health and strength of your nails.

    How to Take off Press On Nails

    Removing your press-on nail set is one of the most critical parts of the entire process, from putting them on, wearing them, and taking them off. It’s time for you to channel your inner nail technician and get to work, but first, we want to ensure you have all the right equipment to get the job done as safely and efficiently as possible.

    What You’ll Need How To Use
    A Bowl Use a bowl to concentrate the removal solution of your choice and soak your pretty but soon-to-be nakey nails.
    Nail And Cuticle Clippers If you don’t plan to reuse your press-on nails, sometimes it’s helpful to trim them if they’re a bit longer.
    Nail File If you’re having trouble removing the adhesive from your nails, you might have to file it down.
    Removing Solution The removing solution is the essential piece to the puzzle as it’s what’s going to loosen the adhesive.
    A Metal or Wooden Pusher If you’re having trouble removing the press-on nails, one of these pushers is excellent for helping to lift them off.
    Nail Strengthener And Cuticle Oil After successfully removing the press-on nails, you should apply a nail strengthener polish and cuticle oil to let them breathe and give them much-needed nutrients after hibernating under the fake nails.

    Now that you have all your proper fake nail-removing instruments, it’s time to dethrone those old ones. There are many different ways and alternatives to remove press-on nails. However, this step is a great and efficient way to do it with items you likely already have in your bathroom cupboard.

    Removing Press On Nails Step 1

    A easy and convenient way to remove press-on nails is by using nail polish remover. Whether or not you are a manicure junky, you likely already have a remover in your home. The first step is to add some nail polish remover into a bowl and dip your nails into it, letting them soak for a few minutes.

    Zohna Tip

    It's essential to use a nail polish remover with acetone, as it helps break down the adhesives used to keep the fake nails pressed to your real ones.

    Removing Press On Nails Step 2

    If soaking them didn’t loosen them entirely, and you want to ensure they come off as efficiently and painlessly as possible, soak a cotton pad or cotton ball and lightly rub around the edges to help loosen the nails more. You want zero tugging on the natural nail as they come off.

    Removing Press On Nails Step 3

    If they aren’t entirely coming off, take a metal pusher or a wooden stick, stick it under the lifted corners of the nail, and lightly lift up. If you soak them long enough, they should unstick pretty quickly. If they are giving you a hard time and causing pain, stop immediately and go back to steps 1 or 2.

    The last thing we want is any damage or pain caused to your natural nail. It’s essential, however, to remember that it’s very seldom that any fake nail wearing and removing will cause zero damage.

    How to Soak off Press On Nails

    One of the most effective ways how to remove press-on nails is by soaking them. It allows the adhesive sticking the fake nails on top of the real ones to become loosened, making it easier for the nail to slide off.

    Soak off Press on Nails Step 1

    Removing press-on nails by soaking them in warm water and whichever removing solution you choose is an ideal route you can take to ensure the safety of your natural nails and the press on ones in case you want to reuse them.

    The different options for removing solutions to choose from are

    1. Nail polish remover (preferably with a high acetone concentration)
    2. Pure acetone
    3. Rubbing alcohol
    4. Hand soap

    Hand soap is probably the least effective route; however, it will help to loosen the glue and will just take more time and patience.

    What you’ll need for how to soak off press on nails

    • Bowl of warm water
    • A sufficient pour of your choice of removing solution

    Soak off Press on Nails Step 2

    Soak your fingers in the solution for about 10 minutes. The warm water and removal solution should begin to loosen the stubborn glue.

    Soak off Press on Nails Step 3

    Once the adhesive has loosed enough on those press-on nails, they should slip right off. However, if not, the wooden or metal pusher will be extremely helpful to lift them that last little bit, and can help get any remaining nail glue off your skin

    How to Remove Press On Nails With Adhesive Tabs

    If you are worried about your nail’s overall strength and health, some people may choose to switch out the glue for nail adhesive tabs. These little clear tabs lay between the fake and the natural nails, helping to hold the former down. This method takes a different approach than the past two alternatives for removing press-on nails.

    Steps For How To Remove Press On Nails With Adhesive Tabs:

    1. Use rubbing alcohol around the edges of the press-on nails and wait for about 30 seconds, helping to loosen the adhesive tabs.
    2. Next, you’ll want to gently move the nails side to side to help get them lifted.
    3. Once those press-on nails and the adhesive tabs have been removed, use a moisturizing lotion or cuticle oil to help with the dryness potentially caused by the rubbing alcohol.

    Zohna Tip

    While you make the rocking motion, you can reapply the rubbing alcohol to help with the removal process if needed.

    If you want to reuse your fake nails again later, perhaps after using nail strengthener polish for a few days, take some more rubbing alcohol and remove any possible leftover adhesive on the backs of the nails.

    What a nail strengthener can offer you:

    • Protect and nourish
    • Reinforce the natural structure of your nails
    • Provide necessary vitamins
    • Promote growth and strength

    How to Remove Kiss Press On Nails

    If you use any beauty products, you likely know about the brand Kiss. Kiss sells a wide range of beauty items. If you are one of the many who use and love their press-on nails, you might be curious about how to remove them. How to remove Kiss press on nails is the same as how to remove press on nails from any company. Following the steps above, your Kiss press-on nails should come right off.

    Kiss Press On Nails Removal Steps Description
    Step 1 Mix warm water and your removing solution and soak your nails for 1-5 minutes.
    Step 2 If the nails feel loose enough, start to wiggle them around, and they should come loose.
    Step 3 If the nails don’t come loose then use a metal or wooden pusher to help lift the nails.
    Step 4 Apply a nail strengthener and cuticle oil to help replenish the nail and surrounding skin.

    Things to Avoid When Removing Press On Nails

    When using fake nails, it’s important to remember that even though they look rockin, they can cause damage to your natural nails. Using fake nails to cover up the previous damage is also never a good thing. Avoiding these three things when using and removing your press-on nails is essential.

    1. Avoiding damage when removing press-on nails all starts from the very beginning. When removing them, just remember the slogan, “no glove, no love,” and make sure you avoid going completely raw under those fake nails by applying a protective polish layer to nourish and protect them from any harmful chemicals in the adhesive.
    2. Tugging at your nails when the glue isn’t wholly dissolved is a huge no-no when it comes to removal. Pulling at them when they aren’t ready to come off can cause damage to your natural nail.
    3. Trying to remove your nails by picking them off without using any of the steps provided is not the vibe and can cause significant damage. No matter how tempting it might be, please don’t do it!


    • "How to Remove Press On Nails to Reuse?"

      The only difference in how to remove press-on nails if you want to reuse them is the time it might take. The longer you soak your fingers in whichever solution you choose will make the glue looser, and the looser the glue, the easier it will be to take them off and remove any residue left on the fake nails. If any adhesive is left over, you can use alcohol, and a cotton pad or Q-tip to scrub it away.

    • "Best Way to Remove Press On Nails With Glue?"

      The best way to remove press-on nails with glue is to soak them. It’s ideal to wait as long as possible before attempting to remove them. Nail glue is usually the strongest for 1-2 weeks and can last up to 3. To prevent as much damage as possible, wait three weeks or until they start to lift naturally. You’ll probably know their lifting when you run your hands through your hair and the strands get stuck under them. It’s weird, we know, but you can’t deny that it happens to you too.

    • "How to Remove Glue From Press On Nails?"

      If you find there to still be glue on the inside of your press-on nails and you plan to use them again, there is no need to fret. If you take a Q-tip or a cotton pad with rubbing alcohol and rub at the glue, it should come off.

      Even if they aren’t attached to your fingers, that doesn’t mean you can’t soak them. If the rubbing alcohol isn’t working, stick them in an acetone bath for a few mins and then rub at the glue, and it should come off.

    • "How to Take off Press On Nails Without Acetone?"

      If you don’t have pure acetone or nail polish remover with acetone lying around the house, nor do you feel like leaving the comfort of your home and running the chance of bumping into anyone you know unexpectedly, there are few alternatives. Rubbing alcohol is a great way to remove press-on nails. Or you could soak them in warm water and hand soap.

    • "Is It Safe to Remove Press On Nails?"

      Of course! However, it would be best if you did it correctly, or it could cause unnecessary damage to your natural nails. Putting something on your body that isn’t naturally meant to be there comes with its risks when removing it. Your nails may get brittle and won’t nearly be as healthy. However, there’s no serious harm. It also doesn’t hurt to use cuticle oil and a nail strengthener to help heal your nails and surrounding skin after removing them.

    Final Remarks

    If there is one thing to take away from this article on how to remove press-on nails is that it takes patience and a gentle hand to do it properly. By doing it correctly, you are ensuring as minor damage as possible. It’s easy for us all to get lazy when it comes to removing press-on nails or nail polish, but resisting the urge to pick at them will make a visible difference to your natural nails. Trust the process and follow the steps provided, and you and your nails will be in tip-top shape.