As the weather starts to get frigid and our nail polish shades naturally turn to darker hues, there’s no doubt that polish remover may come into play more frequently. How can we best keep our nails from becoming brittle and drying out our cuticles to the point of pain? Seeking out gentle and nourishing removers are a great way to perform polish changes without the damage, and we’ve got nine stellar ones that will surely make you forgo your current product.
Before you click through the slide show above for our top picks, check out the GREAT advice from nail guru Deborah Lippmann, who tells us that she looks for polish removers that include Aloe Vera extract and lavender essential oil to nourish nails, and that when selecting a polish remover, “It’s not so much about what (ingredients) to avoid, but rather what are the additives. Acetone by itself is not recommended, but acetone with nourishing ingredients can be less harsh for the nail.”
Lippmann also emphasizes that “Grooming is the key, whether you do a weekly mani at home or at the salon.” Hydration is also essential, and besides picking a great polish remover, Lippmann encourages everyone to moisturize.
“Moisturize your hands with hand cream or cuticle oil every time you wash your hands. Think about when you wash your face, you would probably not wash your face and not hydrate your face. We always wonder why our hands and cuticles are dry, but it’s because we’re not treating them properly. Just think about how often you wash your hands in a given day and my guess is most rarely moisturize after each washing.”
This is one incredible product; scented with natural rosemary and spearmint, if you catch a whiff of it, there's no way you would suspect nail polish remover is being used! The Vegan formula is made from fermented sugars and beets, contains no alcohol and acetone, and efficiently gets the job done. (PeaceKeeper Eco-Easy Vegan Nail Polish Remover, $10, IAmAPeacekeeper.com)
Vitamin E and Chamomile make this spongy tub of nail polish remover a great gentle, affordable solution with an added bonus: since you dip your finger in and twist, you won't have to have cotton swabs and balls on hand! (Sally Hansen Kwik Off Nail Color Remover, $3.19, Soap.com)
With a professional twist lock pump and streamlined packaging, you know you're getting a high quality product with The Stripper, which smoothly removes nail color while hydrating the nail plate with lavender and aloe. (Deborah Lippmann The Stripper Lavender Lacquer Remover, $18, LippmannCollection.com)
These ultra soft, super moist wipes are big enough to do all 10 nails at once, and contains Panthenol Pro-Vitamin B5, which has moisturizing & regenerative properties. (Topshop Nail Varnish Remover Wipes, $34, Topshop.com)
Reminiscent of Love's Baby Soft fragrance, this acetone-free remover smells amazing and is highly effective and saturating, of course sans the harsh chemicals, as per butter LONDON's M.O. (butter LONDON Powder Room Acetone Free Lacquer Remover, $5. butterLONDON.com)
Lock in the moisture with these great on-the-go polish remover wipes, which contain aloe, glycerin and Vitamin E, plus strengthen nails with the rosemary and horsetail extracts. Did we mention that they really do smell like blood orange? Amazing. (LA Fresh Eco-Beauty Acetone-Free Nail Polish Remover, 18 packets, $9.99, lafreshgroup.com)
Considered a 3-in-1 nail polish remover, nail prep, and nail conditioner, the mild formulation with glycerin does the trick on nail polish while managing to not irritate or dry out the nails or cuticles, plus it comes in three size options for your budget and needs. (Zoya Remove Plus Nail Polish Remover, $9.99 for the 8 oz bottle, Zoya.com)
With a light scent, Vitamins A and E, antioxidants, glycerin and eucalyptus oil, expect a non-drying, refreshing formulation to achieve polish-free nails. (Essie Naturally Clean Purifying Polish Remover, $6, ULTA.com)
Another citrus-scented wipe, these come in a compact container perfect for a purse or the office drawer and gently remove polish at a very very do-able price point. (e.l.f. Essential Nail Polish Remover Pads, $1, eyeslipsface.com)