How To Remove Gel Nail Polish From Skin Around Nail?

This dreaded occurrence has happened to all of us before. The struggle to do your dominant hand’s gel polish and your non-dominant hand just not having it. You might feel your manicure is ruined when you spot the gel blob next to the nail or on your finger.

However, there are a few ways you can deal with this issue. In this article, I’ll share with you a full guide on how to remove gel nail polish from skin around nail.

Let’s dive into it with me!

How to remove Gel nail polish from skin?

Generally speaking, to remove cured gel polish on the skin around nails, you can use acetone or non-acetone nail polish remover. If the gel polish is still wet, you just need to wipe it off with a lint-free swab.

how to remove gel nail polish from skin

There are different scenarios when it comes to gel on the skin, and each one calls for another removal method.

The most common cases are:

  1. Wet Gel Polish on the skin
  2. Cured Gel Polish on skin
  3. Cured Blended Gel Polish on the nail and surrounding skin

Now, let’s dive right into the first one!

1. How To Get Wet Gel Off Skin?

How To Remove Gel Nail Polish From Skin Around Nail?

You are lucky when gel gets on your skin when applied to the nail, and you see it before you cure it. This is the best scenario you can get with gel on the skin. Remove the gel gently with any of the following products:

  • A lint-free wipe
  • Regular nail polish remover (in case it doesn’t come off)

Depending on how much gel is on the skin and where it is, you can use a clean lint-free wipe to carefully remove the gel polish.

Keep in mind that if you use a normal wiper or tissue, they will leave pieces of cotton or fabrics on the skin. They will then fall into the gel coats, which makes your gel nails look dull, and you may need to redo the whole thing.

In case the gel polish doesn’t come off, you can add some regular nail polish remover onto the wipe to help get rid of the polish.

Note: Do not use use an acetone remover, it may make the gel polish on your nails chip.

a woman using non-acetone gel polish cleanser

2. How To Get Cured Gel Off Skin?

You remove your hand from the LED/UV lamp and notice the gel on the skin. Sometimes you might feel it while curing, as the skin might start to tingle, but others don’t necessarily feel it straight away.

In this case, you will have to go about the removal differently.

Use acetone remover

Because the gel is dry, you will have to opt for acetone. It is drying on the skin, but it is the best way to get the dried gel off the skin.

Use a cotton ball or pad if the gel is close to the nail to avoid tampering with your cured nail. You can use a soft brush dipped in acetone to prevent cotton hairs from spoiling your manicure.

Wait for a day or two

Another way the cured gel will come off the skin is to wait a day or two. Everyday things like showering, washing your hands, or washing the dishes will let the gel peel off easily especially if it’s on the skin.

However, you shouldn’t aggressively try to remove the gel polish on your skin, which will affect the polish on your nail. Just be patient, it will come off with time (3 days max).

You should know how to keep gel polish from lifting to make sure they can last at their longest on your nails.

3. How To Get Cured Gel Blended With Nails Off Skin?

If you get gel on the finger, blended with the gel on the nail, and cured, that can be a problem. In this case, you might have to remove the entire nail’s gel and start again.

a woman removing gel polish on her skin and fingernails

However, leaving the nail like that will cause air to enter between the skin and the nail, lifting the gel and causing bubbles, which will then need more work to fix bubbles in gel nail polish.

No one would want to walk around with a picture you colored over the lines. So instead, remove the gel on that finger and redo the nail.

Remember, never peel the gel off the nail or scrape it off. This can cause significant damage to your nail and skin. The freshly cured gel will remove faster than a few days old gels, and you won’t struggle to get it off.

You can learn how long it takes for gel polish to dry, which gives you an idea of whether the gel is too rigid to be wiped off easily or not.

Note: Don’t use a nail file to remove the gel on the skin, it may damage the skin and lead to bleeding in some cases.

Should You Remove Gel Polish At Home Or A Salon?

a nail technician using acetone remover to remove gel polish on skin of a client

Where you remove your gel polish from your nail or skin will depend on your confidence in the procedure and if you believe you can do it at home without damaging your nails.

If it’s already cured which requires acetone remover to do the trick, and you don’t have the product. In this case, you can either go to a salon or buy an acetone-based gel polish remover.

Suppose you have never done it before, or are not confident, then you should let a professional nail tech do it. You just need to go to the nearest nail salon and ask them to remove the gel polish on the skin for you.

Avoid these when Removing Gel Polish on Skin

a don't do this sticky note

The skin around your fingernails is sensitive and can dry out fast. LED lamps also do minor damage to the skin. That is why it is crucial to carefully handle your hand’s skin whenever you have to remove something.

  • NEVER scratch it off with your nails or anything sharp
  • NEVER use your teeth to try and remove it or bite it off
  • NEVER overdo acetone when you can use something else
  • NEVER let the acetone touches the polish on your nails (only if you want to remove them as well)

Tips to prevent Gel Polish from getting on your skin

The best advice you can follow is to add extra precautions when painting gel on the nails and ensure no gel on the skin. After every nail you paint, check to see if there is any gel on the skin.

Use a double-ended cuticle tool to ensure no gel goes into the sides of the nail or on the cuticles.

You should always add thin gel layers, whether base coat, top coat, or colored coat. Too thick layers also flow down onto the skin and cause trouble. You have more control over thin layers, and the result is better.

If you are new to the gel application game and this happens too often, you can paint regular clear nail polish around the nail. This will help you get any excess gel off quicker.

The Bottom Line

Getting gel polish on your skin isn’t the end of your gel application. Still, it might cause skin irritation, dryness, and time consumption because of the removal products and strategies.

So be patient when doing your nails and prevent the gel from coming onto the skin rather than having to remove it.

I hope you have found this article helpful, thank you for reading!