10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy


Here are 10 natural nail polish remover substitutes.  I share my best DIY healthy recipes and natural chemical-free products that work just as effectively as toxic nail polish remover. Your nails will thank you for this.  

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy

Manicures are a great way to look effortlessly glammed up. That is until the colored enamel starts to chip off your nails before the party even started.

Instinct would tell you to peel them straight away.

I was guilty of this, too, especially when I’m running out of nail polish remover.

However, dermatologists warn us that attempting to remove the lacquer by forcibly peeling it can damage the nail bed and make it brittle.

If you want an all-natural alternative to the drying and oil-stripping acetone, here are my suggestions.

{READ THIS: 10 Ways To Repair Damaged Nails After Gel And Acrylics}

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes Without Harmful Chemicals

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy; Liquid for removal of cuticles.

Fresh lemons

1. Lemon Nail Polish Remover

Curious how lemon does it? It’s because citrus fruits such as lemon contain citric acid, which is a natural bleaching agent.

Lemon has high citric acid content and this makes it ideal for removing stains even on nails.

Another good news? The same healthy dose of acid can whiten your nails to prevent it from yellowing.

Such a phenomenon is typically associated with frequent manicures.

Pro tip: Use the remaining half of lemon and mix with olive oil to help strengthen nails. Apply the mixture directly onto your nails like a moisturizer.

This is suggested by the University of California Davis.

Materials

  • A bowl of warm water
  • 2 slices of lemon

Instructions

  1. Soak your nails in warm water to soften the lacquer for 5 minutes
  2. Take a slice of lemon and rub it vigorously on your nails.
  3. Repeat the same with the other hand’s fingers until the lacquer dissolves.
Tarragon vinegar

2. Vinegar Nail Polish Remover

How does vinegar fare as a nail polish remover? Well, for one, it is an acid.

The acetic acid in vinegar is an effective bleaching agent for most stains and even on fabrics.

Materials

  • Vinegar
  • Lemon juice
  • Warm water

Tools

Instructions

  1. Soak your nails in warm water to help loosen the lacquer for 10 minutes.
  2. Combine vinegar and lemon juice in a small bowl.
  3. Dab a cotton ball that had been soaked into the vinegar mixture and press on each nail for 20 seconds.
  4. Wipe off the remaining traces of lacquer with the same cotton ball.
Dropper bottle of lemon essential oil

3. Lemon Essential Oil Nail Polish Remover

Materials

  • Bowl of lukewarm water
  • Lemon essential oil

Tools

Instructions

  1. Soak your nails first in a bowl of lukewarm water to loosen the grip of lacquer for 10 minutes.
  2. Soak a cotton ball with enough essential oil and apply it on each nail.
  3. After 10 seconds of leave-on, wipe the traces of lacquer with the same cotton ball.
Female person hands with nail file, manicure

4. Hydrogen Peroxide Nail Polish Remover

So what’s the deal with hydrogen peroxide?

While this product may not be readily available in your house, it is a time-tested safe oxidizer and bleaching agent.

It used to be prepared for cleaning wounds and burns long before other antiseptics were discovered.

Its mechanism on nail lacquer is that it dissolves the stained layer through oxidation. It breaks the chemical bonds found in stained molecules.

Materials

  • 2 parts hydrogen peroxide
  • 1 part hot water (the hottest you can tolerate)

Tools

Instructions

  1. Pour the hydrogen peroxide-hot water ration into a bowl.
  2. Soak your nails and file them one hand at a time.
Essential oil in glass bottle with fresh, juicy grapefruit and green leaves-beauty treatment.

5. Grapefruit Essential Oil Nail Polish Remover

If you’re getting OC about your chipped nail polish, simply raid your bag for your essential oils and some cotton.

It’s just like removing nail lacquer with alcohol but only more fragrant.

Bonus: Essential oils provide moisturization to your nails and hands.

Materials

Tools

Instructions

  1. Soak your fingers into a bowl of lukewarm water for 10-15 minutes to unbind the lacquer from your nails.
  2. Drop your essential oils into the cotton ball until it is saturated.
  3. Place on top of each nail and apply pressure for 10 seconds.
  4. Swipe the remaining traces of nail polish with the same cotton ball.
gesture of womans hand using hand sanitizer

6. Hand Sanitizer (Young Living) Nail Polish Remover

If you ran out of rubbing alcohol, you can use this product to safely and efficiently remove your nail polish.

Materials

  • Non-toxic hand sanitizer

Tools

  • Cotton ball

Instructions

  1. Add sanitizer to your nails. 
  2. Using a cotton ball, swipe the lacquer immediately off your nails.
  3. Repeat the process until there’s no trace of nail polish left.
Philippine Psychic Surgery

7. Thieves Household Cleaner Nail Polish Remover

Materials

  • Thieves Household Cleaner

Tools

Instructions

  1. Soak your nails in Thieves Cleaner for 1 minute.
  2. Using a cotton ball, apply a little pressure on each nail and gently swipe to remove the lacquer.
  3. Repeat the process as necessary.
How To Use Kelp Powder For Teeth: Proven To Eliminate Plaque

8. Toothpaste Nail Polish Remover

Think of your nails as teeth that need to be cleaned thoroughly of stains.

Materials

  • Toothpaste

Tools

  • Old toothbrush
  • Paper towel

Instructions

  1. Apply a pea-size amount of toothpaste directly onto your nails, one at a time.
  2. With an old toothbrush, gently brush the surface of the lacquer until it dissolves.
  3. You can use a paper towel to wipe off traces of nail polish.
Vodka in shot glass.

9. Alcoholic Drinks Nail Polish Remover

Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

This nail polish remover substitute might be extreme, but it’s still a safe way to get rid of ruined enamel.

For one, vodka has an alcohol content of 40%-97%, which is enough to dissolve nail polish effectively.

Materials

  • Clear alcoholic drink such as vodka, gin and grappa (preferably with high alcohol content)

Tools

  • Bowl
  • Cotton ball

Instructions

  1. Pour the alcoholic drink into a bowl.
  2. Soak your nails in it for as long as 30 minutes to dissolve the lacquer fully.
  3. With a cotton ball, wipe the remaining traces of nail polish.
Hands of a woman with red manicure and nail polish bottle on whi

10. Nail Polish, Nail Polish Remover

Okay, this might be tricky. Nail polish on nail polish?

The mechanism here is that the new, still-moist layer will attach to the old enamel like glue.

Without allowing it to dry, you can simply wipe off BOTH the new and old nail enamel.

This is preferable especially if you have several nail polish bottles you only use sparingly.

Materials

  • Near-empty nail polish

Tools

  • Paper towel

Instructions

  1. Apply a coat of the new nail polish all over the nail.
  2. With a paper towel, quickly wipe off the lacquer.
  3. Repeat the process until there’s no trace of nail polish left.

Natural Nail Polish Remover Recipes

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy; Woman gets manicure procedure in a spa salon. Beautiful female h

Now that you’ve discovered a few awesome hacks for nail polish remover substitute, I bet you’re ready to upgrade your manicure arsenal.

Here are two of my suggested recipes that will speed up the process of removing nail lacquer.

apple cider vinegar

1. Vinegar Essential Oils Sponge Soak Recipe

Instead of wasting cotton balls and nail polish remover, why not try this recipe that will eliminate the usual hassle?

Materials

Tools

Instructions

  1. Stuff the jar with sponges up to the rim.
  2. Soak the sponge in apple cider vinegar and lemon essential oils.
  3. Close the jar and shake well until the sponges have fully absorbed the liquid.
  4. To use, dip the fingers of your one hand into the jar touching the damp sponges.
  5. Wait for a minute until the nail polish has been dissolved.
Baking soda with detergent and pile of dirty laundry.

2. Baking Soda and Toothpaste Recipe

Our ever-reliable baking soda partners with toothpaste for an efficient nail polish removal.

Together, they help dissolve nail lacquer while adding a dash of whitening to the nails.

Materials

Tools

  • Old toothbrush

Instructions

  1. Put a small amount of toothpaste directly on your nails, one at a time.
  2. Add a dash of baking soda and brush the mixture with a toothbrush.
  3. Repeat the process as needed and rinse well with water.
  4. Optional: Use essential oil to moisturize the nails after procedure.

Natural Nail Polish Removers Without Toxic Chemicals

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy; Woman gets manicure procedure in a spa salon. Beautiful female h

Alternatively, you can try products that have natural formulations for removing nail polish. Here are two of my favorites:

1. Karma Naturals Nail Polish Remover

This acetone-free nail polish remover claims to be vegan and environmental-friendly, which in fact it is.

It contains propylene carbonate and tocopheryl acetate, which are a nature-safe solvent and moisturizer respectively.

But the best feature of this product lies in its use of soybean oil methyl exter, which is a solvent extracted from—what else—but soybeans!

And instead of the strong chemical odor like in acetone, this one uses lavender for fragrance and moisturization.

{GET YOUR KARMA NATURALS NAIL POLISH REMOVER HERE}

2. Karma Naturals Nail Polish Remover Wipes

This product is a lazy girl must-have.

Instead of having to soak your cotton ball with acetone, it lets you use a damp paper towel-like “wipe” to dissolve the nail polish easily.

A swipe of this over your nails will instantly remove the lacquer as the wipes contain higher concentrations of stain-removing oils and alcohol.

It’s a perfect compact remover for the girl-on-the-go.

{GET YOUR KARMA NATURALS NAIL POLISH REMOVER WIPES HERE}

How To Remove Gel Nails Without Acetone

To remove gel nails without acetone, pour some warm water into a small bowl with dishwashing liquid and salt. Soak your fingers into the bowl for 15-20 minutes. After both hands had been soaked, dry your nails with a clean towel. You’ll start to notice some nail polish and gel nails cracking or peeling off. Buff the remaining traces of gel by filing.

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy; Soak off gel

Always after every nail polish removal, be reminded to moisturize with cuticle oil or any essential oil to prevent your nails from drying out.

This will help promote better nail growth and minimize the risk of nails turning brittle.

{GET YOUR CUTICLE OIL HERE}

Pedicures And Manicures

10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy ; How To Do a Great Manicure

From Visually.

Summary

Here are the 10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes again to remind you of what they are:

  1. Lemon
  2. Vinegar
  3. Lemon Essential Oil
  4. Hydrogen Peroxide
  5. Grapefruit Essential Oil
  6. Hand Sanitizer (Young Living)
  7. Thieves Household Cleaner
  8. Toothpaste
  9. Alcoholic Drinks
  10. Nail Polish

Conclusion

Natural remedies abound us, and they include a few hacks that you can use to remove your nail polish in a less damaging way.

If you think acetone dries out and weakens your nails, you should rethink your manicure options and consider going natural.

Not only are these items easily sourced, but they are also practical alternatives for your weekly nail spa sessions.

When you opt for a nail polish remover substitute, you are saving your nails from further damage and your pockets from excessive acetone purchase.

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Home Spa Ultimate Guide (Ideas, Recipes, Benefits, Treatments); 14 DAYS TO ESSENTIAL OILS CONFIDENCE

If you’d like to know more about how to use essential oils, I love this FREE e-course that walks you through the process step by step. 

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10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy

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10 Natural Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: Easy & Healthy