How To Move On From Acrylic Nails

Case Study by Claire

In the thirteen years I’ve been a beauty therapist, Acrylic Nails come up time and time again as a treatment and I do my best to inform and educate my clients on why they aren’t great and why we won’t ever be offering them. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had acrylic nails myself and understand why people have them, but knowing what they do to your natural nail underneath – from weakening the nail and nail bed to fungal infections – has been enough to put me off for good.

Client Case Study

Over the past few months, I’ve been treating a client who’s been having Acrylic Nails for the past ten years. She’s been frightened to be without them because of the condition of her natural nail underneath so just carried on. Finally, I persuaded her to have them removed so we could create this article. To be honest, she thought we wouldn’t be able to get them in good enough condition for her, so she’d end up going back to Acrylic Nails… I had other ideas. I was confident that if we nurtured the nails (especially over the first couple of months) and gave Jane instructions for a simple homecare regime so she could look after them herself, she would be converted. It’s worth mentioning that before turning to Acrylic Nails, Jane had tried to look after her nails without success.
existing acrylic nails

Step One – Removing Acrylic Nails

The first thing I did was gently soak off and remove as much of the acrylic nail as I could. When I took the nail polish off, we could clearly see horizontal ridges across her nails where the infills had been done.

These areas are weak from drilling and filing so I knew they would be tender underneath with thin nails through lack of natural growth.

To relieve a lot of the strain, I took the length of the nail down and buffed the thickness of the acrylics down enough to give a little natural flexibility to the nail, but not too much as the nails were paper thin.

When you apply a thick coating over the nail, such as acrylic or a hard gel, the immune system in the natural nail gives up, leaving them paper thin underneath.

Step Two – Treating The Nail

While the new nail was growing from the cuticle and the thin layer of acrylic left was growing out, we needed to treat the new nail underneath with two products from Jessica Cosmetics:

  • Restoration is a treatment base coat that can be applied everyday (remove after a week and start again) to strengthen the nail.
  • Phenomen Oil is used each night to hydrate the nail.

I also applied a GELeration overlay to leave Jane’s nails with a nice finish so that she wasn’t left with only the weakened nail showing.

Jessica GELeration is a soft flexible Gel, so it:

  • Allows the natural nail to bend as it should when knocked and bounce back.
  • Offers extra protection to the weak nails so they don’t break.
  • Still allows the natural nail and cuticle to 'breathe' naturally.

It’s important to hydrate the cuticles every night with Phenomen Oil. By massaging the cuticles you increase the blood circulation, which encourages nail growth and healthy nails.

The Result

Three weeks later, Jane came back for another GELeration Manicure. We removed the remaining acrylic, pushed back the cuticles, tidied the growing nail and hydrated her cuticles and hands.

stronger nails after acrylics
Once her nails were painted, Jane commented that her nails looked and felt a lot healthier and that the didn’t feel tight or heavy like they did with the acrylics on.  It will take a while longer to grow out all the ridges, but we are off to a great start.


If you fancy moving on from acrylic nails and want to do it at home, Jessica do a kit to help. The two other products mentioned above are Restoration and Phenomen Oil.

Last Words From Jane

When Claire suggested I removed my acrylic nails, I was a little bit horrified and a little bit scared. It's been a long time. But, everything she said as we went through the process made absolute sense. And, by having the GELeration manicure while my nails are coming back to life underneath, left me feeling confident about my nails rather than worrying about keeping my hands in my pockets.

new nails post acrylic

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