Nailcare

Is rubbing alcohol the same as nail polish remover?

Updated: September 20, 2021

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Nail paint remover is a common product found at beauty shops and pharmacies.

It’s designed to remove nail polish from the nails, typically in just one application.

But what if you don’t have any of this on hand?

Is rubbing alcohol the same as a nail paint remover?

The answer is no! Rubbing alcohol will not remove your nail polish effectively because it doesn’t contain acetone or other harsh chemicals that are needed for the effective removal of nail varnish.

 

Why do people rub alcohol on the nails and how does it work?

Rubbing alcohol is a solvent, which means it breaks down other substances.

It can be used to clean the oily residue from your skin or remove nail polish without acetone.

However, while rubbing alcohol may break down some of the products on your nails, it cannot completely dissolve them like nail paint remover can because its purpose isn’t to remove nail polish.

There are other products that can be used to clean the nails, such as acetone or alcohol-free nail paint remover.

Try using a few different types of these before you resort to rubbing alcohol on your nails because it will not do the job effectively!

 

What does nail paint remover do on the nails?

Nail paint remover removes the top layer of nail polish, which makes it easier to remove in just one application.

This is possible because nail paint remover contains acetone and other harsh chemicals that dissolve nail varnish so you can wipe or rub it off with a cotton ball.

 

Ingredients of a nail paint remover

1. Acetone

It is a common solvent used as an alternative to traditional, hazardous solvents.

Acetone works by dissolving the oil from the top layer of your nails, which then makes them easier to remove with cotton swabs or water.

This process is called acetone polishing and it’s a common technique used by manicurists to help you get your nails back into shape!

2. Carbon tetrachloride

It has strong solvency power because of its boiling point, which is below room temperature.

This makes it an effective solvent for nail polish removers because it can dissolve oils on your nails and make them easier to remove with either water or cotton swabs.

3. Chlorinated solvents

Chlorinated solvents are very strong yet volatile substances that have a high boiling point of over 100 degrees Celsius.

This makes them a common solvent in nail polish remover because they can dissolve oils on your nails that other solvents cannot easily do, which then helps you get rid of the unwanted product with ease.

4. Acetate esters

It is the main component of most nail polish removers and helps dissolve oils from your nails.

5. Ethanol

Ethanol is often found in pharmaceuticals because it has strong disinfectant qualities that kill bacteria and fungi on contact.

6. Ethyl acetate

Ethyl esters are found in nail polish removers and are responsible for the removal of oil.

7. Ethers

Ethers are also often used to dissolve oils on your nails so they can easily be wiped off with a paper towel or cotton swab.

8. Propylene glycol ethers

These are also a common solvent found in nail polish removers because they dissolve oils on your nails.

 

Do you need Rubbing Alcohol?

You might want to rub alcohol if you don’t have access to nail polish remover or if you just want a quick way of removing the product from your nails.

Rubbing Alcohol is not as effective because it doesn’t contain harsh chemicals that are needed for the removal of nail varnishes, such as acetate esters and ethers.

So in this case, yes Rubbing Alcohol may be a good option.

 

What does rubbing alcohol do on the nails?

It is a solvent that can be used to remove nail polish without acetone.

Rubbing Alcohol is a solvent that can be used to clean the oily residue from your skin or break down some of the products on your nails, but not completely dissolves them like a nail paint remover.

Rubbing alcohol will not remove your nail varnish effectively because it doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals.

A good nail polish remover will have acetone or other harsh chemicals that are needed for the effective removal of nail varnish.

Rubbing alcohol doesn’t contain these substances and it won’t break down products on your nails as well as a solvent found in most nail paint removers, such as acetate esters.

This is why rubbing alcohol is not a nail paint remover.

Rubbing Alcohol can break down some of the products on your nails, but not completely dissolve them like a nail paint remover because it is used for cleaning and removing oil whereas a Nail Paint

Remover should be used for removing nails varnish.

 

How to apply nail paint remover on the nails?

Cotton Ball

Apply the nail paint remover to a cotton ball and wipe it over your nails.

Water

Fill a small bowl with warm water, then dip one of your fingers into the liquid for five seconds before removing it from the water and drying it off on a paper towel. This will help release any oils that might be on your nails.

Paper Towel

This is the most effective method for removing nail varnish because it’s an abrasive that will help remove any oils from your nails to make them easier to wipe away with a cotton ball or other cleaner.

After you have applied one of these methods, simply use a paper towel or tweezers to wipe away the oils from your nails.

Cotton Swabs

Apply some nail paint remover onto a cotton swab and then rub it over your nails in circular motions for about two minutes before wiping it off with a paper towel or tweezers.

 

Final words

If you want to remove nail polish from your nails, you have two options –

Rubbing Alcohol and a Nail Paint Remover.

Rubbing Alcohol will not remove all the oils on your nails that need to be removed for effective removal of nail varnish like acetate esters do in a Nail Paint Remover would.

You can also use Rubbing Alcohol to remove nail polish without acetone.

Rubbing alcohol is a solvent that can be used for cleaning the oily residue from your skin or break down some of the products on your nails, but not completely dissolves them as a nail paint remover would.

You will have better results with removing oil from your nails by using water (fill a bowl with warm water and dip finger for five seconds) or a paper towel (150-200g).

You can also use rubbing alcohol to remove nail polish without acetone.

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