Chemical-Free Nail Polish Remover

Now I’m someone who doesn’t often wear nail polish, for a few reasons. One of them being that I’m one of those gals that honestly gets dressed to go out at the last minute, rarely wears makeup, and tends to do the minimum amount possible to look semi-what decent 😉 What can I say, I’m a tad lazy.

I’m also not a fan of the chemicals used in nail polishes, and their removers. Our nails can actually absorb the chemicals on them from the nail polish and remover, which is cause for concern. Chemicals like Isopropyl acetone, methyl ethyl ketone, and n-methyl-pyrrolidone, which are commonly used as the solvent in nail polish removers, have been shown to cause reproductive harm and organ toxicity. So, using a more natural polish remover can be a good alternative. (1)

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Any who, going back to topic. When I do wear nail polish I don’t like keeping it on once it’s chipped away. So, a while back, I started looking for ways in which to remove nail polish using a more natural, chemical-free solution.

Below are a few different tips and tricks I use to remove nail polish in a toxin-free way! P.S. feel free to comment below any other ways in which you remove your nail polish in a healthier, more natural way too! I love getting new ideas, and I’m sure so many others would love the tips too! P.P.S if you know of any natural, toxin-free nail polishes that work really well, please share them with me in the comments below! I’m on the hunt for a more natural alternative to the chemical-filled nail polishes you often find at the store, and have been looking at using a more natural alternative (or even trying my hand at making my own – if you have a recipe, please share!)

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Ok, I’m done. 😜 Let’s get making!

Before we get started in learning how to make a DIY natural nail polish remover – if you like what you’re seeing, subscribe to my email newsletter at the bottom of the page to keep up to date on the latest recipes, DIYs, and tips I share!

If you want to make and share, please tag me on Instagram @simplynaturalnessa or use the hashtag #simplynaturalnessa! I’d love to know how it went for you! I love seeing your recreations!

All Natural Nail Polish Remover

Ditch the chemical-laden nail polish removers and try your hand at making one of these natural and effective removers instead! My go-to one is the first option, but feel free to try and test the others I mention as well to find one that works best for you and your nails!

Lemon & Vinegar

Lemon and vinegar are both quite acidic which can be helpful in breaking down nail polish. Plus, they’re also great because you’ll usually find them in your kitchen or else at the supermarket.

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  1. Soaking the nails in warm water for 10-15 minutes before removing the nail polish can help to speed up the process.
  2. Mix equal parts lemon juice and vinegar.
  3. Stir the mixture, soak a cotton ball in it (or makeup pad), press it onto your fingernails, and hold it for 10-20 seconds (or more). This causes the nail enamel to dissolve and removes all the remnants of nail polish. If you’ve tried this and it won’t come off, soak your nails directly in the solution for 4-5 minutes beforehand, then continue with the next step.
  4. Use the cotton ball to wipe off the polish. It might take a little longer to remove if there are several coats of nail paint.
  5. Use a moisturiser or nail oil to keep your nails healthy after that.

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Other Alternatives

Nail Polish

Using the same nail polish or a clear one, and applying it over your nails, can help to remove the previous coat of nail polish from your nails! Nail polish dries due to evaporation of the solvents in it. Applying the second coat helps soften these same solvents, which allows the polish to return to a liquid state and be wiped away. A clear top coat works well too, as they tend to dry slower.


  • Slow-drying nail polish
  • Paper towel (or reusable makeup remover pad)


  1. Select a nail polish that will not dry too quickly.  The best type of polish for this method is thin and slow to dry.
  2. Apply the polish to one nail at a time. You don’t need to take as much time applying the polish as you normally would as you’re going to wipe it off anyway. Make sure you don’t allow the new polish to dry, as this will make it even more challenging to remove, and will take longer.
  3. As soon as you’ve applied the new coat of nail polish, wipe it off immediately.
    It’s a good idea to avoid using cotton balls to wipe off the polish when using this method, as they tend to break apart or get stuck to the wet polish. Just keep in mind, it may require slightly more effort to wipe off compared to using normal remover to wipe up the old paint.
  4. Repeat painting and wiping until your nails are free of polish. It may take a few tries before it works correctly. Just keep adding another layer of polish and then rubbing it off again until it’s all gone.

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Rubbing alcohol can be a good alternative to lemon juice and vinegar, particularly if you don’t have either of those ingredients with you on hand. It’s more natural and less harsh than the chemicals found in commercial removers, and can be helpful for those suffering with nail infections, as alcohol has antibacterial properties.


  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton ball (or reusable makeup remover pad)


  1. Soak your nails for 10-15 minutes (or more) in a bowl of lukewarm water.
  2. Wet a cotton ball with alcohol and use it to wipe off the nail paint.
  3. To keep your nails healthy, use a moisturiser or cuticle oil.

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I hope these alternatives help!! XO

If you’d like a little run-through of how I make the nail polish remover I use, and how it works on my nails, see my video below for a quick demonstration.

Please let me know how your nail polish remover goes for you in the comments! If you’re looking for more great natural alternatives and DIYs to make, see my Beauty page!

Did You Make This?

Let me know how it went! Comment below and if you share a picture on Instagram, please tag me @simplynaturalnessa and use the hashtag #simplynaturalnessa.

Lots of love,

🖤 Vanessa



  1. How to Remove Nail Polish Without Using Remover. (June 23, 2019). WikiHow. Retrieved from
  2. Kaviliga, Komal. (September 7, 2018). 6 Brilliant DIY Ideas For Nail Polish Removers. Style Craze. Retrieved from