There’s no feeling more powerful than stepping out of the nail salon with a fresh set. But several fills later, you’ll find it’s time to remove your acrylics so you can give your natural nails a little TLC.

You’ve probably heard about the dangers of removing acrylics at home, which leaves you wondering how much it costs to get acrylic nails off in a salon. Luckily, this service is usually less than $20 and saves you from damaging your natural nails.

Keep reading to learn more about how much it costs to remove acrylic nails and why you should leave it to professionals.

How much does it cost to get acrylic nails off?

Acrylic Nail Removal Cost

Average: $16Minimum: $12Maximum: $39

A full acrylic set removal costs an average of $16, with the average cost ranging from $12 to $39. This is based on limited internal data — prices will vary depending on where you live and if you’re getting another service. For example, the cost might be different if you follow up with a different type of manicure.

Acrylic fills will partially remove your acrylic nails and redo the color, shape, and design. A full removal will leave you with only your natural nails and should be done every three months to keep your nails healthy.

How long does it take to remove acrylic nails?

It generally takes 20 to 30 minutes to remove acrylic nails. When you get a fill, your nail technician will likely remove part of the acrylics, but not trim them unless they’re damaged, or you want a shorter length. If you regularly get acrylics, consider a complete removal every three months or so to give your nails a break.

It can be tempting to try and remove your nails at home. Afterall, a regular manicure comes off in a flash, right? Acrylic nail removal isn’t easy to do at home, and you should always get it done professionally when possible. Otherwise, you risk removing the top layers of your natural nails or breaking your nails, which can take months to grow out and correct.

Below we’ll cover the two methods most salons use to remove acrylic nails. The first few steps of both methods are the same:

Image covers the difference between filing off and soaking off acrylic nails.

What is the file-off method?

The file-off method is the quickest way to remove acrylics. To do this, your nail technician will:

  1. Cut excess nail length with a clipper
  2. Use an electric file to file away the top layers of acrylic
  3. Use a traditional file to remove the last layer of acrylic without damaging your nail
  4. Touch up and remove the last bits of acrylic with acetone
  5. Wash and moisturize hands

This process takes around 20 minutes in total, depending on your nail length. It’s not recommended to try this method at home, as electric files can easily cause damage to your natural nails or cut your cuticle if you’re not a professional.

What is the soak-off method?

The soak-off method is the go-to method to remove acrylic nails because it removes all of the acrylic without filing down your natural nails. It’s similar to how nail technicians will remove a gel manicure

For this method, your nail technician will:

  1. Cut excess nail length with a clipper
  2. Use a file to buff out the shine from the acrylic nails
  3. Apply cuticle oil or Vaseline to the skin around your nails to protect them
  4. Soak nails in acetone for about 20 minutes
  5. Use a cuticle stick to remove softened acrylics
  6. Wash and moisturize hands

This process takes longer, so it’s not great if you’re in a rush. Although acetone can damage your nails, this method is less damaging than filing off your acrylics because there’s less risk of filing down your natural nails.

Nail care tips for after acrylic removal

Whether you’re taking a break from your beloved acrylics or want to get your nail beds in top shape before getting your first set, there are a few ways you can maintain healthy nails:

  • Use a glass file: Glass files are easy to clean and create a smoother edge than traditional files.
  • Moisturize your hands and cuticles: Dry cuticles leave your nails susceptible to cracking or peeling.
  • Apply a clear polish or base coat: Completely bare nails are prone to breakage, so protect weaker nails with a layer of strengthening polish.
  • Push your cuticles back instead of cutting them: Only cut hangnails if needed. Cutting cuticles can lead to more hangnails down the line and even infection.

File into a round shape: Pointed or square nail shapes are more likely to get caught on things, leading to breakage or tearing.

Image lists tips for caring for natural nails after removing acrylics.


Will a nail salon take off my acrylics?

Not every nail salon offers acrylics, but if they do, they should be able to take them off. Reach out to your local salon to see if they’ll remove your acrylic nails for you.

How long does it take to get acrylic nails off professionally?

It typically takes 20 to 30 minutes to remove acrylic nails professionally.

How much does a nail soak-off cost?

Acrylic nail removal costs around $16. You’ll need to call ahead to see if the salon files off or soaks off acrylics.

Should I get acrylic nails removed professionally?

It’s easy to damage your natural nails while removing acrylics if you’re not experienced. We recommend seeing a professional for removal to reduce the risk of damage.

Whether you’re looking to take an acrylic nail break or just want to book a fill-in, nail technicians on StyleSeat will always help keep your nails healthy so you can keep sporting your favorite manicures.