Nail Polish

Nail Polish Remover Substitutes: 10 Effective Nail Polish Remover Alternatives

nail polish remover substitute

Nothing lasts forever, this surely includes your carefully manicured nails. It’s short timing starts off from when it starts chipping, and you do not want to be cut a chipped nail. Then you reach for your nail remover, oh you’ve run out of nail removers. Perhaps, you left home on a vacation without it, and you badly need to clean off your nail polish. In this situation, you’d need a nail polish remover substitute.

It could be you do not like the smell of nail polish removers, and you wish to have some nail polish remover alternatives. Moreover, nail polish remover are said to thin out the nail plate, and also make your nails dry. It can irritate the cuticles as well, thereby making it red and dry. To avoid the irritations, with few researches here and there, we came by lot of substitute for a nail polish remover.

There are other things that can play the role of a nail polish remover. A substitute for nail polish is laying in your first aid box, another is in one of your kitchen cabinets, while some are laying on your wash hand basin in the toilet, some are in your toilet cabinets. Stay close to this article, and you will get to know other things that work in place of that nail polish remover.

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How to Remove Nail Polish Without Nail Polish Remover

How does it sound that your toothpaste can actually remove that chipping nail polish, and you don’t have to go to the salon to get it removed? Or that you can use your old deodorant to clean off the nail polish? Did your manicurist paint your nails in a nail colour which you do not seem to like, and you don’t want her to feel bad? Well, grab your bottle of rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide and get to work.

2020 Effective Nail Polish Remover Alternatives

With this article, it will come to you as a surprise that some of the things which you’ve left to accumulate dust on your kitchen cabinets are actually useful in this aspect. And you will definitely be cutting off some expenses after going through this article and save more.

Also Read: Best and Affordable Nail Polish Protector Under $10

What Can You Use Instead of a Nail Polish Remover?

From soaking of your nails into an Hydrogen peroxide solution to re-painting your nails with another nail polish, here are 10 alternatives you can use as a nail polish remover substitutes at home

  1. Hydrogen Peroxide
  2. Vinegar and Lemon Juice
  3. Hair Spray
  4. Lemon and Water
  5. Hand Sanitizer
  6. Rubbing Alcohol
  7. Toothpaste
  8. Deodorant
  9. Perfume
  10. and New Nail Polish

1. Hydrogen Peroxide as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

Hydrogen peroxide is an everyday household need. Some people use hydrogen peroxide to clean their teeth. Hydrogen peroxide is also used to clean wounds or cuts. It’s useful when there is a need to scrub your kitchen sink, or clean glasses and mirrors. It can also be used to sterilize your make up brushes. It does a few numbers of things, and yeah, that includes serving as a nail polish remover alternatives.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Hydrogen Peroxide

To use the hydrogen peroxide as a nail polish remover substitute, follow these instructions.

What you will need for this are;

  • A bowl
  • Hot water
  • A nail file
  • And definitely your bottle of hydrogen peroxide

Make a solution of 1/2 cup of hydrogen peroxide with 1/4 cup of hot water. The water shouldn’t be blazing hot, as you won’t want to scald your skin.

Then soak your nails in the solution, and use your fingers to gentle rub off the nail polish. Rub off the nail polish while your nails are still in the solution. If you have any leftover nail polish, you can use the nail file to file that off.

2. Vinegar and Lemon Juice as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

Vinegar is a staple in the home. It uses ranges from cleaning your home to serving a nutritional value. Vinegar can be added to different recipes, such as salad dressings. It is also part of a weight loss plan for many. Vinegar is also used as a cleaning agent for surfaces. It also helps reduce the chances of cancer. Vinegar can be used to treat dandruff, some use it as a toner for their face. As it is a cleaning agent, it can be used to substitute a nail polish remover when you run out of your nail polish remover.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Vinegar and Lemon Juice

What you will need for this are;

  • A lemon, which the juice will be squeezed out
  • 3-4 tablespoons of vinegar
  • Cotton ball
  • A bowl

Mix the vinegar and the juice you squeeze out of the lemon in the bowl. Leave to soak for about 15mins. Dip the cotton ball in the solution, and use that you clean off the nail polish. It is advised to wash your hands afterwards, and moisturize.

3. Hair Spray as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

You never thought your lovely hair spray can be used for anything other than what you originally use it for? Well, that hair spray can be used to clean off nail polish.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Hair Spray

What you will need for this are;

  • Your hair spray
  • Cotton balls

Place the cotton ball directly in front of the nozzle on the hair spray, and spray some in the cotton ball. After that, you swipe the hair spray filled cotton ball over your nail polish, and clean the nail polish. Repeat when needed. And when you are done, wash your hands and moisturize.

You might be wondering how hairspray got the ability to act as a nail polish remover. This is actually because of the alcohol content in hairsprays. And alcohol is one of the main content in nail polish removers.

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4. Lemon as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

Lemon is an ingredient which is very familiar with the cosmetic industry. Lemon has the ability to lighten the skin. And it has many uses. Some use a slice of lemon to clean surfaces. Some people squeeze lemon juice in different corners of their homes to get rid of odors. Some squeeze in lemon juice on dishes, to add flavor to the dishes. Using lemon as a nail polish remover substitute also makes the list of the uses of lemon.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Lemon

To use lemon as a nail polish remover, you will need the following;

  • Lemon
  • Warm soapy water

Soak your polished nails in the warm soapy water for about 5mins. Then slice the lemon. Pick up a slice and gently rub on your nails. The nail polish will come off with no stress, as the lemon would have made it soft. Then you can finish off by washing your hands and moisturizing your nails and skin.

When using lemon as a nail polish remover alternatives, you need to keep in mind that despite the fact that lemon will certainly do the job of the nail polish remover. You need to also keep in mind that lemon lightens the skin, so be careful when using it as a nail polish remover substitute. This is because you won’t want to have different skin shades on your fingers.

5. Hand Sanitizer as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

What! If a hand sanitizer can removes nail polish, does that mean when I rub some hand sanitizer on my hands, with the aim of sanitizing, will it peel off my nail polish?

I know your fear, and the answer to that question is no. Sanitizing your hands with a hand sanitizer won’t peel off your nail polish just like that. For a hand sanitizer to peel off your nail polish, you have to put in some extra work.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Hand Sanitizer

What you will need for this is;

  • Your hand sanitizer
  • A cotton ball

To get started, squeeze a drop of hand sanitizer directly on your nail, and immediately use the cotton ball to clean off the nail polish. You will need to repeat the process because the polish might not come off at the first attempt. Do the same to other nails, till you are done removing all the nail polish you wanted off. Once you are done, wash your hands and moisturize them.

Hand sanitizers contains alcohol, and this is why it has the ability to work as a nail polish remover alternatives.

6. Nail Polish as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

This might sound funny. Using a nail polish to remove another nail polish, but it works, so why not. For this method, it’s better to use a clear nail polish as the remover, or you use a nail polish which you do not mind wasting.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Another Nail Polish

For this method, you need;

  • Nail polish
  • A paper towel (do not use a cotton ball)

For this method, you need to apply the nail polish which you want to use as the remover on the old nail polish. While it is still wet, pick up the paper towel and start cleaning the nail polish off the nail. Do not let the polish dry before you attempt to peel off the nail polish. It is also advised not to use a cotton ball for this method. This is because, when you use a cotton ball for this method, the cotton ball fibre will keep sticking to the nail polish, which will eventually make it messy. And you don’t want that.

It is also advised to wash your hands when you are through, and moisturize your nails and hands.

7. Rubbing Alcohol as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

Rubbing alcohol is another household staple, due to the many uses. It is mostly used for cosmetic purposes. And it can also be used as a nail polish remover. That’s why it’s in this article, right? Using rubbing alcohol as a nail polish remover substitute is good for those who have nail infections because rubbing alcohol contains antibacterial properties.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Rubbing Alcohol

For this method, all you will need are;

  • Bowl of warm water
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton ball

Start off by soaking your nails in the bowl of warm water. Then put some alcohol on the cotton ball, and rub on your nails. You can still use the rubbing alcohol for this purpose, without first soaking your nails in a bowl of warm water. The difference is that one will be faster than the other. When you soak your nails in warm water and rub on the cotton ball soaked in alcohol on your nail, the polish will come off quicker. Unlike when you do not soak it in a bowl of warm water.

There are some questions people ask concerning using rubbing alcohol as a nail polish remover substitute. We would be addressing those questions here.

What is a good substitute for rubbing alcohol?

If you do not have a bottle of rubbing alcohol at hand anymore, not to worry. You can always get something else to do the job for you, without a sweat. Witch hazel can replace rubbing alcohol in substituting a nail polish remover. Witch hazel just like your rubbing alcohol is also another household staple that has numerous uses. And cleaning stains is also part of it. Witch hazel can be used to clean stains on the skin and the nails, also stain on surfaces in the house.

All you have to do is put some witch hazel in a cotton ball and rub on your nails, just like you will do with your rubbing alcohol.

Can I substitute vodka for rubbing alcohol?

Rubbing alcohol is actually different from vodka in terms of alcohol content. The alcohol content in rubbing alcohol which is also known as isopropyl alcohol is stronger than that of vodka, which is also known as ethyl alcohol.

In respect to the question, vodka can also be used to clean your nail polish, but it won’t be as effective as rubbing alcohol. Due to the difference in alcohol content. And yeah, vodka is more expensive.

Can you make rubbing alcohol at home?

Rubbing alcohol can be made at home, but the thing is you will be getting ethanol alcohol and not isopropyl alcohol which is what the off the shelf rubbing alcohol contains.

To make this, you need the following;

  • White sugar, 2 pounds
  • Baker’s yeast
  • 2 HDPE plastic jug or a glass jug
  • A gallon of purified water
  • A bowl of cold water
  • A funnel
  • A duct tape
  • A thermometer
  • 2 1/2 feet of copper tubing

Start off by sterilizing your containers and other items in hot water. Here is a link to the full procedure of making rubbing alcohol at home.

8. Toothpaste as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

There is no home without a tube of toothpaste in one of the bathrooms. Toothpaste has been known by few that aside from the primary use which is for cleaning the teeth, it can also be used to clean the dirty surface of your pressing iron.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Toothpaste

To add to that list of usage, it can also be used as a nail polish remover. For this method, you will need;

  • A tube of toothpaste
  • A paper towel
  • Old toothbrush

Dab a little amount of toothpaste on your nails, using the old toothbrush. Then wipe off with the paper towel. The nail polish might not come off from the first try, so you will have to repeat the process.Then you wash your hands, and moisturize the nails and skin.

The reason why a toothpaste can also work as a nail polish remover is that it contains ethyl acetate. Which is also part of the composition of a nail polish remover.

9. Deodorant as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

Do you have some old deodorant which you got from a store, but do not seem to like the fragrance? Not to worry, you can put this deodorant to some good use, by turning it into a substitute for nail polish remover.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Deodorant

To get this done, you will need the following;

  • Deodorant
  • Cotton balls

To get started, spray the deodorant in a cotton ball. Ensure the cotton ball is placed very close to the nozzle on the bottle. And make the cotton ball wet with the deodorant. Then move on to using the wet cotton ball to clean off the nail polish.

Another method in which one can get this done is by spraying the deodorant directly on your nails. And cleaning off with the cotton ball. Whichever method you use, make sure you wash your hands when you are done, and moisturize your nails and hands.

You might be wondering why deodorant can work as a nail polish remover alternatives. This is because of a deodorant containing alcohol. And alcohol is an essential content of nail polish removers.

10. Perfume as a Nail Polish Remover Substitute

You might be wondering why we are mentioning perfume and deodorants in the same article for the same use. But the thing is, perfume is different from deodorant. And some people choose one of the two, they do not use both. Some prefer a perfume to a deodorant, while others prefer a deodorant to a perfume. So this means, not everyone has a bottle of perfume and deodorant on their shelf. But it’s unlikely not to have at least one if them.

How to Remove Nail Polish with Perfume

To use perfume as a nail polish substitute, you will need the following;

  • Cotton balls or paper towels
  • Perfume

For this method, start off by spraying some perfume on a cotton ball or a paper towel. And clean off the nail polish with that. You can also use the other method, which is by spraying the perfume right on your nails and cleaning off with the cotton ball or paper towel. When you use the last method, you have to start cleaning off the nail polish while the perfume is still wet on the nail polish. Do not let it dry, before you start cleaning.

When you use this method, do not forget to wash your hands, and moisturize your nails and skin.

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It is worth noting, that the reason why a perfume can work in place of a nail polish remover is because of the alcohol content in the perfume. And alcohol is one of the main contents of a nail polish remover.

Frequently Asked Questions

What else can be used a nail polish remover?

There are quite a number of things which are not listed here that can be used as a substitute for nail polish remover, such as; acetone-free towelettes. This is like a face wipe. And can be used to clean nail polish. You can also use witch hazel and vodka.

Does vinegar remove nail polish?

Yeah, vinegar does removers nail polish. But you have to mix it some drops of lemon to achieve the best result. This has been explained carefully above.

Is nail polish remover same as rubbing alcohol?

No, nail polish remover is not the same as rubbing alcohol.

Rubbing alcohol contains isopropyl alcohol, while nail polish removers contains acetone. Acetone works as nail polish remover better than rubbing alcohol can.

Can hand sanitizer remove nail polish?

Definitely! Hand sanitizers can remove nail polish. This is because of the alcohol contents in hand sanitizers. And the procedure to make your hand sanitizer act as a nail polish remover has been explained above.

Does toothpaste remove nail polish?

Toothpaste contains ethyl acetate, so it can also be used as a nail polish remover. All you have to do is dab some toothpaste on a toilet paper and scrub that on your nails. The procedure has been carefully explained above.

How does baking soda remove nail polish?

Baking soda is known to be used by many as an abrasive or scrubbing agent. To use baking soda as a nail polish remover, you have to mix the baking soda with lemon juice and olive oil. Use an old toothbrush to put the paste on your nails, and start scrubbing lightly. Do not go hard with the scrubbing so the brush bristle does not injure your finger.

Is nail polish remover antibacterial?

Nail polish removers are natural disinfectants, due to the content of acetone and ethyl acetate. It can be used to sanitize or disinfect objects or surfaces.

How do you get nail polish off without nail polish remover?

To remove nail polish without nail polish remover, there are several options one can opt for. Depending on which you have quick access to.

You can go for the lemon and vinegar solution, or using toothpaste. You can also use rubbing alcohol, this is quite similar to a nail polish remover.

Does hydrogen peroxide remove nail polish?

Yes, peroxide can be used as a nail polish remover substitute. And this has been explained in the article. All you have to do is soak your nails in a solution of hydrogen peroxide and hot water. While your nails are some in the solution, start rubbing off the polish using your fingers.

Final Note

It is also worth noting that these are only substitutes for nail polish remover, so some might not be as effective as the real nail polish remover. But they will surely do the job if done in the right process.

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