Manicures can help you feel put together and be an integral part of your self-care routine. However, wearing nail polish consistently can dry out your nail beds and cause them to develop unsightly white spots (otherwise known as keratin granulation) over time. Using nail polish removers that contain acetone, which strips the nails of natural oils, only dries out the nail bed further.
Fortunately, there are many nail polish removers on the market designed to hydrate and strengthen your nails in-between treatments.
For those seeking to forgo harsh chemicals, a range of brands offer formulas made with strictly natural, cruelty-free ingredients. Some are also infused with hydrating oils or vitamin compounds. Depending on your needs and preferences, these products are available at nearly every price point and for natural, gel or acrylic nails.
Here, we’ve done the research to find the best nail polish removers you can buy — from ultra-moisturizing options to acetone-free drugstore picks. Discover them all ahead.
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Best Moisturizing Nail Polish Removers
To hydrate your nails while keeping up your manicure routine, you may want to try a soy-based polish remover. While it may take more effort to remove polish with these than with acetone-based options, they’re less harsh on your nails to prevent further damage. Plus, they’re often made with cruelty-free ingredients. If you still want to go the acetone-route, however, look for more mild formulas infused with nourishing ingredients like aloe vera or glycerin.
Ella + Mila Polish Remover
This soy-based formula is enriched with vitamins A, C, E, and lavender oil, which are both known for their hydrating, anti-inflammatory and nail-strengthening properties. It’s a cruelty-free and vegan option, too.
Zoya Nail Polish Remover
This mild acetone formula is also a great option, as it gently removes polish without stripping away natural oils and contains glycerin to condition nail beds. It’s also “five-free,” meaning it’s devoid of the toxic ingredients formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, dibutyl phthalate or camphor often found in nail polishes and removers.
Best Strengthening Nail Polish Removers
If you already have brittle nails, skip acetone formulas altogether and choose options that offer deep hydration with ingredients like tea tree oil, vitamin E and lavender oil. Biotin (a water-soluble B vitamin) and wheat protein compounds also can promote stronger and healthier nails.
Dr.’s Remedy Nail Polish Remover
This acetone-free formula product combines tea tree oil, wheat protein, biotin, vitamins C and E, garlic bulb and lavender oil. The garlic bulb, tea tree and lavender oil are antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory, while these vitamins are high in antioxidants to help strengthen your nails.
Eternal Cosmetics Nail Polish Remover
Use this versatile remover formula on natural, gel, acrylic or glitter polishes. It’s acetone-free and contains pomegranate and sweet almond extract oils, which work to soothe, strengthen and nourish dry nails.
Best Natural Nail Polish Remover
Natural polish removers are completely free of acetone. Instead, they typically use essential oils and plant extracts to remove polish while nourishing nails and cuticles. They’re also vegan-friendly, cruelty-free and non-toxic.
Rippling Kindness Nail Polish Remover
For hydrating results, this option contains moisturizing soybean oil. It’s a cruelty-free, vegan, acetate-free and eco-friendly option.
Mineral Fusion Nail Polish Remover
The Mineral Fusion Nail Polish Remover is an acetone-free, cruelty-free, vegan, and non-toxic option that shouldn’t dry out your nails and is designed to remove stubborn dark or glitter polishes. In addition to natural nails, you can use it for shellac or mineral-based gel polishes, too.
Best Drugstore Nail Polish Removers
Pampering your nails doesn’t mean you need to break the bank. Acetone-based formulas tend to be the cheapest options you can buy, however there are several drugstore options that contain acetone as well as nourishing ingredients for healthier tips.
OPI Expert Touch Nail Polish Remover
Perfect for all types of nails, this non-drying formula is suitable for natural, gel, or acrylic polish removal. While it is acetone-based, it’s also infused with soybean oil to wipe your nails clean without stripping them of their natural oils.
Sally Hansen Strengthening Polish Remover
Sally Hansen’s Strengthening formula is also a great choice because it contains hydrating Vitamin E and wheat protein to harden nails and prevent them from breaking easily. While this product contains acetone, these ingredients can help counterbalance its moisture-stripping effects.
Best Polish Removers for Gel Nails
While it’s best to leave gel polish removal to salon professionals, there are products available to help you complete this process at home. You can soak them in pure acetone with a cotton ball and foil wraps around each finger, then follow up with a nail oil treatment for long-term care. A range of brands also offer acetone-free paint-on formulas made to break down gel polish when applied.
Pronto Professional Polish Remover
Weida Sign Gel Polish Remover
This polish remover provides results and allows you to remove the gel within a couple of minutes without stripping the moisture from your nails. It’s made with natural ingredients and should be a more gentle alternative to acetone and tin-foil gel removal solutions.
Best Nail Polish Remover Wipes
Convenient pre-soaked pads allow you to clean off any chipped polish with no extra supplies required, making them perfect for when you’re on the go.
Cutex Swipe & Go Nail Polish Remover Pads
Like its liquid form, there are a variety of options to choose from depending on your nail polish type and ingredient preferences. You can purchase versions with conventional acetone polish removal, more eco-friendly selections, and ones suitable for gel nails, too.
Butter London Nail Scrubber & Polish Remover Wipes
These hydrating nail polish remover wipes are infused with vitamin E and aloe to hydrate and nourish your nails. They’re perfect to keep your bag or to carry while traveling and can also remove glitter polishes.
Karma Polish Remover Wipes
These polish remover wipes offer the same cruelty-free and vegan formula as the brand’s bottle of polish remover, but in a portable form. They contain soybean and lavender oil to soothe and condition the nails while removing any excess polish or dirt.