How to Remove Cuticles

Oh My Gel
by Oh My Gel
5 Materials
30 Minutes

Today, we’re going over how to remove cuticles. It’s important to make sure you are getting this process right.

If you do it right you are promoting nail health which means stronger nails.

You’re also promoting nail growth and contributing to really good long lasting wear of your manicure by having a clean nail bed to apply the product to.

Tools and materials:

  • Cuticle remover spray
  • Cuticle pusher
  • Cuticle clippers
  • Water
  • Paper towel
Applying cuticle remover

1. File nails and apply cuticle remover

Start by filing the nails and applying cuticle remover. I use CND Cuticle Away but there are so many different brands you can use.

I just started with this one and it’s worked for me so I stuck with it.

Pushing back cuticles

2. Start the pushback

Now go ahead and start with the pushback. I use a standard cuticle remover. Just get in there and start pushing back.

Make sure to push all along the edges of the nail plate because your cuticles are going to grow all over the nail plate, not just at the base of the nail.

Cuticles are very thin skin that grows out on your nail plate so it’s really important to scrape the nail plate well to get it all removed and pushed back. It isn’t until you start pushing it back that you can really see the build-up of the cuticle that has come out.

One great thing about pushing the cuticle back properly is that you minimize how much cuticle grows out which will prevent it from getting really thick and callused.

Doing it right makes getting the job done easier every time after.

Pushing back cuticles

Once I finish all the basic pushback, I use the angled end of the cuticle pusher.

It has a much sharper angle so I’m able to touch up everything I pushed back. I go through and scrape all along the edges and remove any cuticle I can.

Doing this part right really helps minimize the need for cuticle clippers and nipping skin.

Cleaning nails

3. Scrape and clean

Scrape off as much of the cuticle as possible all over the nail bed and the edges of the nail.

You can scrape and clean under the nails too. Spray your nails with a little bit of water to help remove the residue from the cuticle remover so you don't have gooey product left over. 

Cleaning nails

Wipe everything off with a paper towel.

Clipping cuticles

4. Cuticle clipping

If necessary, now is the time to go back in with the cuticle clippers.

You only want to nip dead white skin. You do not want to nip callused skin. All that would do is make the callusing worse. Callusing is live skin. When you irritate it by nipping or cutting at it you make it worse because it just wants to protect itself.

In most cases people are cutting way too much, even if you’re at a nail salon. They’re not even cutting cuticles, they’re cutting the skin surrounding the nail plate.

Make sure you’re paying close attention and only nipping the white dead skin around the nail plate and being really gentle.

If you push the cuticle back the right way, you’re going to find that you won’t have much to nip during this stage of the process.

How to remove cuticles

How to remove cuticles 

This process will make sure your skin is going to stay healthy so you don’t have excessive dryness of skin and hangnails coming up over the edges of the nail. It’s going to help leave the nails super healthy.

This whole process is really simple, it just takes time and the desire to do the job right. You don’t want to cut extra skin. If you’re not pushing your cuticles back at all it’s going to grow back thicker onto your nail plate.

Steer clear of using an electric file. Even if you’re using it with all the right pieces it really irritates the nail and skin.

I hope it was helpful to learn what a proper cuticle removing process should look like. This is a great way to maintain and promote nail health.

If you have any comments or questions, drop them in the comments section!

Check out my Easy Healthy Nails Manicure Tutorial.

DIY cuticle oil

Do your cuticles need some TLC? Check out this tutorial on How to Make Cuticle Oil: Easy Recipe + Useful Tips!

Suggested materials:
  • Cuticle remover spray
  • Cuticle pusher
  • Cuticle clippers
See all materials

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