Gel Polish Removal Simplified

I know that many of you love gel manicure due to its durability. And sometimes, I get questions such as how to remove this gel polish. Well, you actually can remove your own gel polish manicure/pedicure at home with these easy steps.

What You Need

Nail Foil Remover Wraps

  1. Nail Removal Wraps such as foil wraps (any brands) or CND wraps
  2. Gel Remover such as OPI Expert Touch Lacquer Remover or Gelish Gel Remover
  3. Cuticle Stick
  4. 240-grit fine nail file such as Tropical nail file

You can make your own foil wraps with aluminium foils and cottons. But you have to cut them one by one. To save time and energy, you may also buy pre-cut removal foil wraps with attached absorbent pad. They are economical and easy to use.

How to Use

Gelish Gel Remover

  1. Saturate removal wrap pad with Expert Touch Lacquer gel remover.
  2. Place pad over gel and wrap finger. For faster removal, cover hands with plastic gloves and warm towels.
  3. Check first finger after 15 minutes; if necessary, resaturate pad, rewrap finger and check every 5 minutes. Gently push off gel with cuticle stick.
  4. Wash hands.

If you experience any sensation during removal (e.g. pressure, squeezing, pinching), remove wrap and gently file surface of gel only along side walls with fine 240-grit nail file. Gently push off as much gel color as possible with cuticle stick. Resaturate foil wrap, rewrap nail and continue soaking.

Top Ways to Organize Your Nail Care Station

Hello, nail polish enthusiasts! We know you’re one of us—someone whose bathroom sink may be covered with a rainbow of those tiny glass bottles. Since organizing your nail care station can really level up your mani/pedi experience, we at Modernize want to share a few of our favorite solutions.

nail polish rack

Nail Polish Into Art

One of our favorite organizational solutions is a hanging nail polish rack. You can purchase or build a few shelves to house your favorite colors—maybe the CND Shellac Art Vandal Collection that’s just coming out. Choose shelves that match your bathroom decor, or spring for a pop of accent color.

And don’t be afraid to get creative with shelving. Much like photo collages, you can find shelves that have a geometric style and actually create a work of art out of your favorite polishes. You can also find lazy-susan nail polish trays, perfect for spinning around to the color you need. This is a great solution if you’re implementing nail art and need several colors.

organize your nail files

File Your Files

Once you’ve organized your favorite polish colors, it’s time to find a solution for nail care tools. If you’re like us, you probably have several sizes of nail clippers, files, buffer boards, cuticle clippers, and cuticle gels. Strewn out across the counter, those small items can take up a lot of room and cause clutter.

Luckily, you can get creative when organizing and tie into your bathroom decor. Antique cans can be repurposed to use as jars to store files and clippers. These cans can add a retro aesthetic to your design. You can also store nail care items in a decorative box with a latch. The latch will keep the contents contained if you accidentally knock the box off the counter (or if you have a pet!) Decorative boxes come in plenty of different sizes and patterns—you can usually find them at craft stores or in the gift wrap section.

If your nail care accessories are decorations in themselves, go for clear, tinted, or painted mason jars and store your accessories in the open. Pack mason jars with cotton balls and Q-tips, and set them on the vanity — or hang them on the wall!

manicure station

Lights, Mirrors, Action

You need great lighting in your mani/pedi station, especially if you’re getting into more intricate nail art. It can be difficult to attach crushed shells, rhinestones, or nail glitter flakes if you can’t see what you’re doing. We recommend vanity-style lighting around a large mirror to boost up the glam factor. You could also spring for overhead track lighting with soft bulbs. Just avoid fluorescents!

Alternatively, you could choose a small, adjustable lamp to shine light on each area where you work to get a better view. Make sure you have a vanity mirror so you can see how great you look!

When it comes time to dry the paint, pick up one of our UV gel nail lamps and a pair of anti-UV fingerless gloves. This will keep your skin safe, and your mani will be done in no time! Store your drying accessories in a drawer, or set up a station to feel like you’re in a real nail salon!

This article and its content was provided by the staff at Modernize. The views and opinions expressed within this post are those of the author alone and do not represent Esther’s Nail Center. The copyright of this content belongs to the author and any liability with regards to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with them.

How To Care For Your Gel Nail Polish Before It’s Too Late

daisy gel polish sachet pink 1136 color

Daisy Gel Sachet Pink #1136

It is not uncommon that gel polish may get thicker after a while. Here are a few suggestion on how to take care your gel nail polish. These suggestion are from CND website for caring Shellac but I think it works for all gel nail polish.

  • Shake the bottle thoroughly before each use to disperse the solvents which helps prevent evaporation and thickening
  • Close the cap firmly when not in use. This will prevent solvent from evaporating in between services. It may be necessary to clean the neck of the bottle after use to ensure a tight closure.
  • Do not expose the bottle to light without the cap firmly in place. Exposure to light can begin the curing process, this includes sunlight and table lamps.
  • Replace the cap any time you are not actually applying the product. This limits evaporation as well as exposure to light.
  • Use Shellac when the bottle is at room temperature. This will insure good consistency for application and eliminate fast evaporation of the solvents.

When in cold temperature, gel polish tends to be thicker than usual. Therefore, before application, let it stand in a normal temperature for a while.  Also another suggestion is to wrap it in a warm damp towel. Warm the towel first in microwave. Or you can also soak the polish in a warm water in bowl and wait for about 15 minutes.

So do you have any experience with thick gel polish or know the solution to it? Please share with us by leaving your comment below.

Nail Polish and UV Lamp Bulbs Disposal

Whether you have boxes and boxes of nail polishes in your closet or just a few in your drawer, we all eventually have to throw away some of them. With the rising of gel nail polish and uv lamp consumption, we have to know the proper way of nail polish disposal.

Nail polish and uv lamp bulbs are categorized as household hazardous waste because they contain chemicals that are hazardous to health and environment. Therefore, they need to be disposed in a different way than regular garbage.  In California, nail polish and bulbs are not allowed to be dumped into the dumpster but we need to dispose them in a special facility that accept this kind of waste. For more information about this, please read “How to Dispose Your Nail Polish Properly“.

Another way is to reuse nail polish in different ways. Read “15 Alternative Uses for Nail Polish” to get some ideas. Let us take care the earth by disposing nail polish in a proper way.

CND Shellac – Your Questions Answered

If you’d like to know how to apply and remove shellac nail polish, we’ve published a step-by-step, easy to follow, photo tutorials on how to apply CND shellac nail polish and how to remove CND Shellac nail polish. The application and removal processes were done by a CND Education Ambassador.

shop cnd shellac nail polish

Since Esther’s Nail Center started offering CND Shellac, a lot of you have been asking about CND Shellac and our store  shipping policy. We try to put together all questions and answers into this post.

I am not an expert in CND Shellac or frequently use it. What I learned from other nail technicians or internet is what I use to answer these question. I’ll include links for references.

Questions and Answers about Shellac Nail Polish

Q: What CND Shellac colors are used for French Manicure?
A: For the white tip, use Shellac Cream Puff (opaque white) or Studio White (off-white).  For the natural pink, you may use Negligee, Clearly Pink or Romantique. Negligee and Cleary Pink are sheer. Romantique is a bit opaque.

Q: What does Shellac color look like?
A: Solessence has tonnes of photo swatches on CND Shellac nail polish and shellac layering. You have to do some searching to find what you want.  Here are some links to the Shellac nail polish swatches :

Q: Can I used normal nail polish thinner for CND Shellac?

A: According to CND, thinning the product is not recommended & thinner cannot be used without affecting the efficacy of the product. The Shellac may seem thicker in viscosity when cooler in the morning, as the room warms up to an average room temp it should go back to its normal preferred consistency. But if product becomes too thick to use, discard and replace with fresh product. Also it’s recommended to shake, shake and shake shellac prior to use for 30 seconds.  Here’s why (excerpt from Shellac blog on “Why do I need to shake the Shellac bottles?”) :

“If the bottle is not shaken prior to use, a disproportionate amount of solvent will be used as the brush is pulled through the top layer of solvent. Additionally, during use, more Solvent can evaporate out of the open bottle.  As more solvent is used, the formula becomes off balance and the thicker ingredients that settle to the bottom of the Shellac bottle are left. Overtime, this make Shellac seem thicker which makes it difficult to apply Shellac in thin layers and can lead to under curing and wrinkling.”

Q: Do you ship CND Shellac outside the US?
A: Yes, we ship CND Shellac products to outside the US except Acetone and Alcohol.

Q: Do I need a license to buy CND Shellac?
A: We don’t need a license to purchase Shellac. We’re open to professionals and consumers.


To read more about CND Shellac, I list some helpful links for references:

  • Shellac Q&A for Consumer, answers to your common question about Shellac.
  • CND Shellac French Manicure application and removal video tutorial

  • Shellac Blog, if the above are not enough.
  • CND Facebook, I am liking it! Pour out your complain and problem here.
  • Some cool videos on on pretty basic things like tricks how to apply Shellac Base Coat and Top coat, French manicure, how to use remover wraps, etc.
  • Video instruction on how to use CND Shellac UV Lamp



I’d like to quote what CND said in their News Update. I think it’s worth to read because many of us still have problems with Shellac application.

Lastly, allow us to reinforce some keys for successful use of Shellac:

1. Always use Shellac as a SYSTEM. Using Shellac Base Coat, Color Coat and Top Coat along with the CND (or Brisa) UV Lamp will provide perfect synergy for optimum wear.

a. Substituting any part of the system will result in diminished performance.

b. Substituting another lamp will result in insufficient cure, which reduces durability and length of wear. The UV output of the CND lamp is specifically calibrated to the system and Shellac formulas for proper cure.

2. Proper removal using the Shellac Remover Wraps will help keep your client’s nails gorgeous and healthy! Regular soaking in bowls of acetone or utilizing cotton & foil to remove Shellac will dry out and weaken the nail structure and overexpose the surrounding skin. The advantage of using the Shellac Remover Wraps includes the following:

a. The integrated cotton pad on the Wrap isolates the acetone to the nail plate…not the skin.

b. The plastic liner in the Wrap will help to hold in warmth that will accelerate removal.

c. Pulling the Wrap from the nail helps slide away the Shellac pieces for a tidy, meticulous removal.

3. Shake, shake, and shake! Vigorously shake every bottle before use to effectively blend all ingredients.

4. Apply in thin, even coats and seal the edge of the nail for best wear and to prevent wrinkling.

5. Proper cure is critical to your success with Shellac:

a. Don’t let your lamp bulbs run out! To avoid interruption in your Shellac or Brisa Gel services, make sure you regularly check the time remaining on your lamp bulbs. Go to to view the CND in minutes Lamp Set-up Video for a reminder of these full instructions. ( Not doing so could result in your lamp shutting off during a service! Paying attention to bulb usage will ensure your lamp continues to provide optimum output to cure your Shellac and Brisa products completely.

b. Remove all film from the lamp. Before using your lamp for the first time, remove all blue film from inside the lamp. Including the bottom FOOT TRAY.

c. Place hands properly in the lamp. Make sure nails are positioned in the highest output area, which is below the center of the bulbs.

d. Lay the hand flat on the tray…and be sure the client doesn’t ‘clench’ the tray with their fingers.


All CND Shellac nail polish, shellac uv lamp, wraps and other products are available at Check us out!

shop cnd shellac nail polish

Nail Art Stamping Tutorial

Stamping Nail Art is fun and easy to create simple nail art design. If you are just starting to do some stamping or want to learn new tips and tricks on stamping nail art, keep reading. I bet this tutorial is useful for you.

This nail art stamping video is from our favorite blogger Asami from Nails by Asami. She will explain about what can and cannot be used as a stamping polish, as well as how to do double-color stamping and selective stamping.

So enjoy the video and I hope you find it helpful!

Stamping Nail Art Kit, Stamping Plates and Scraper & Stamp are available at Esther’s Nail Center with affordable price.  Stamping Nail Art Plates 19ct is only $15.95. So you may want to check it out.

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