How to Remove Super Glue From Nails Without Acetone

Ideally, you should avoid superglue during mani-pedis. It dries the nails, cracking them and increasing the risk of infection. Moreover, superglue is difficult to remove.

Nevertheless, some people use it to attach press-on nails and nail art. Also, many people use super glue to reattach broken natural nails.

Let’s look at how to remove superglue without using harsh chemicals like acetone to prevent further nail damage. 

How to remove superglue on nails without acetone

Soapy water is the best solution to remove super glue without acetone. Fill a bowl with warm, soapy water and soak your nails in the solution for 10-15 minutes. Then scrape the debris using another finger or a hard edge. Alternatively, soak your nails in rubbing alcohol or non-acetone nail polish remover.

Does Super Glue Come Off Nails? 

Yes, super glue comes off nails. It’s the same as nail glue, just stronger. Therefore, acetone, commonly found in nail polish remover and some household products, easily removes super glue from nails.

Alternatively, you can remove super glue from nails using soapy water, isopropyl alcohol, or non-acetone nail polish removers.

But don’t expect s seamless process. Given its strength, super glue forms a strong bond with the nail plate, requiring substantial effort to separate.

Typically, you must scrape off most of the super glue using a nail file before soaking the finger in acetone or another solvent.

Can you Remove Super Glue on Nails without Acetone?

Yes, you can remove sure glue on nails without acetone – and it’s easier than you think. For instance, warm water and vitamin-rich cuticle oil remove super glue from nails while nourishing your nails and the surrounding skin.

First, scrape off as much super glue from the nails as possible. Then prepare a bowl of warm water and add vitamin-rich cuticle oil. The water breaks down the chemical bonds holding the superglue molecules to loosen the glue. Meanwhile, cuticle oil soothes the nail bed and plate, preventing inflammation or cracking.

Again, the glue won’t always come off on the first try. So, be prepared to soak your nails in the solution 2-3 times. But it works eventually.

Can you Remove Nail Glue without Acetone?

Yes, you can remove nail glue without acetone. It’s a simpler process than removing superglue and takes less effort. But you need the same solvents. 

Soapy water is the least-invasive way to remove regular nail glue from your nails. Soak the nails in warm, soapy water for 10 to 15 minutes to loosen the glue. Then scrape off the debris with a cuticle pusher.

Alternatively, use rubbing alcohol, white vinegar, or acetone-free nail polish remover. The process is the same. First, soak your hands in the solution to loosen the glue.

Then scrape off the residue with a cuticle pusher. Remember to apply vaseline to nourish the cuticles and surrounding skin.

Most of our clients use these methods to remove acrylic nails at home. But they also apply when removing excess glue on natural and gel nails.

How to Remove Super Glue on Nails without Acetone

Below are step-by-step guides to remove super glue from your nails using non-acetone nail polish remover, rubbing alcohol, and warm, soapy water. 

Method #1: How to Remove Super Glue with Non-Acetone Nail Polish Remover 

Non-acetone nail polish removers are the most effective acetone alternatives for removing glue on nails. They work quickly, typically in minutes. Also, they are gentle on the nails and contain soothing compounds to minimize inflammation.

Unfortunately, they may dry the nail plate and cuticles. Also, non-acetone nail polish removers may damage press-on nails, rendering them useless.

The best non-acetone nail polish removers are Tenoverten Rose Polish Remover and Ella + Mila Soy Polish remover. Both are vegan, but the former contains rose oils, while the latter has lavender essential oil.

Removing Nail Glue with Non-Acetone Nail Polish Remover: The Step-by-Step Removal Process

  1. Wiggle the artificial nails a little to weaken the adhesive bond. The bond cracks under pressure for easier penetration of polish remover.
  2. Pour some non-acetone nail polish remover into a bowl. You don’t need much, just enough to soak your fingers.
  3. Dip your fingers in the solution and soak them for 2-3 minutes. You’ll see some acrylic or gel material coming off the nail.
  4. Use a cuticle pusher or orange stick to scrape the loose gel or acrylic material from the nail plate. Alternatively, wiggle the nail art or press on from side to side.
  5. Do the press-on nails come off? If not, soak your fingers once more for 2-3 minutes. Then push away the acrylic, gel, or press-on nails.
  6. Rinse the nails with warm water to remove the remaining glue residue. Then apply cuticle oil to soothe the natural nails and surrounding skin. Finally, trim the nails with a nail file.

Method #2: How to Remove Nail Glue Using Rubbing Alcohol or Isopropyl Alcohol 

You can use either isopropyl alcohol or rubbing alcohol. They’re the same product but in different concentrations. While isopropyl alcohol is 100% alcohol, rubbing alcohol is 50% to 99% alcohol. The stronger the concentration, the better.

Both are hydrophilic, with a high affinity for water molecules. So, they readily draw water from glue adhesives, weakening the bonds.

But they aren’t as strong as acetone. For instance, acetone takes 1-2 minutes to remove glue, while 50% alcohol takes up to 30 minutes.

Removing Nail Glue Using Rubbing Alcohol: The Step-by-Step Removal Process

  1. Get rubbing alcohol from your preferred supplier: Remember, the higher the concentration, the faster it works. At the same time, highly concentrated alcohol solutions are more corrosive to the fingers and nails. Fortunately, you can dilute isopropyl or rubbing alcohol with water.
  2. Soak your nails in the solution: As we’ve mentioned, alcohol is hydrophilic. It readily absorbs water. So, don’t soak your hands in the solution for too long, as it dries the skin and nails. Generally, you must soak the nails for 20-30 minutes if using rubbing alcohol and at least 3-5 minutes if using isopropyl alcohol.
  3. Wiggle or scrape off the fake nail: One of the best approaches is using a spare fake nail to get under press-on nails or scrape away the acrylic or gel product. Alternatively, use a cuticle pusher. Work gently, from one edge to the other, without injuring the cuticles.
  4. Finish up: Wash your real nails with warm water after removing the false nail. Then dry your hands with a towel, apply cuticle oil, and soothe the skin and palms with vaseline. The advantage of warm over cold water is that it helps soak off any lingering debris.

Method #3: How to Remove Nail Glue with Warm, Soapy Water, and Cuticle Oil 

Finally, you can always turn to warm, soapy water + cuticle oil to remove nail glue. This method avoids harsh chemicals while guaranteeing success. Also, it’s the simplest DIY process.

Hot water softens glue, even without soap or detergent. However, adding soap accelerates the process.

Again, soap breaks down the adhesive bond, weakening the glue. So you can easily wipe the acrylics or prey off the false nail. But soap dries the nails. So, you need good cuticle oil to nourish the surrounding skin when you’re done.

How to Remove Nail Glue via the Warm, Soapy Water Method: A Step-By-Step Guide

  1. Fill a bowl or sink basin with warm water. Then add gentle hand soap. Ensure that the water isn’t scalding hot.
  2. Soak your hands in the water for 10-15 minutes to soften the glue. Fortunately, soapy water is harmless. So you can soak your hands longer without significant side effects.
  3. Gently pry off the fake nails. Locate the area where the acrylic or press-on nail is detached and begin prying off the nail in this area. Don’t hesitate to soak your nails for a few more minutes if the fake ones don’t come off.
  4. Use a nail buffer to file off the stubborn residue. Alternatively, you can use a nail or electric file (e-file). However, be warned that e-files can remove too much material from the nail plate if you’re not careful.
  5. Finish up by rinsing the powder with warm water. Then apply cuticle oil and petroleum jelly to nourish the nail plate, nail bed, and cuticles.

Tips to Remove Super Glue on Press-On Nails 

Removing stick-on nails is very easy, as we’ve seen. Acetone, non-acetone nail polish remover, rubbing alcohol, and soapy water weaken the glue within half an hour at most, allowing you to pry off the nail.

However, you may occasionally encounter challenges like stubborn stick-on nails that refuse to come off.

Also, soaking your nails too long may damage the nail plate. If you’ve experienced similar problems before, consider the following tips;

Keep the Fake Nails Longer

The glue that holds press-on nails weakens gradually. That’s why the nails eventually fall off. For this reason, keeping the nails longer makes them much easier to remove.

Keeping them for a few more days is fine. But a few more weeks is even better. The stick-on nails will have started falling off.

Use Nail Tabs

Nail tabs are nail glue substitutes that securely hold tips and press-on nails. They have tape on both sides that reveals an adhesive surface.

Remove the tape on one side and stick that face to the artificial nail. Then peel the remaining tape and stick the false nail to the real nail. 

Nail tabs are very easy to remove. You don’t need acetone, even if you have some. Soak your nails in warm, soapy water for 3-5 minutes, and the taps will fall off.

Apply a Top Coat

Top coats are technically regular nail polish without the pigment and dispersing agents. So, it’s easier to soak off than nail glue or superglue. Also, it’s less corrosive.

For this reason, applying a top coat before applying stick-on nails makes the removal process much easier.

Caring for your Hands After Removing Nail Glue 

Removing superglue from your nails irritates the nail plate, bed, cuticles, and surrounding skin. Consider the following tips to soothe your hands;

  1. Wash your hands in warm soapy water: Natural soap leaves valuable oils on the skin, but regular soap is fine if that’s all you have.
  2. Apply natural skin oil on your hands and nails: Natural skin oil reverses the drying effect of acetone and other solvents. Almond and olive oil are our top picks.
  3. Allow your nails to breathe between manicures: Wearing artificial nails for too long takes a toll on the nails, often leaving them thin and weak. You may also attract nail fungi and bacterial infections. So, allow your nails to rest for 1-2 weeks between manicures. This period allows the nails to recuperate while starving off harmful microorganisms.


What dissolves super glue on acrylic nails?

Acetone is the best solution to dissolve superglue on acrylic nails. Its powerful ingredients dissolve many compounds, from water to ethanol and glue.

For instance, acetone only takes a few minutes to break down superglue bonds, allowing you to wipe the residue from the surface. Soapy water, rubbing alcohol, and vinegar are other potent solvents to consider.

How do you get superglue off fake nails?

Soaking your hands in warm soapy water is the easiest way to remove superglue from fake nails. Fill a bowl with warm water and add hand soap. Then soak your nails in the solution for 10-20 minutes.

Alternatively, soak your hands in acetone, non-acetone nail polish remover, or rubbing alcohol. Vinegar works too.


Non-acetone nail polish remover is the best solution for removing superglue from nails without acetone. It’s gentle on the nails but as effective as acetone in breaking down adhesive glue bonds.

Alternatively, consider rubbing alcohol, vinegar, or warm, soapy water. Soapy water is the least invasive but takes the longest time.

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