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[Troubleshooting] How to Get 5-Minute Shellac Removal in REAL Life

If you’re familiar with the Shellac system, you know a Shellac manicure will remove easily without nail damage in only 5 minutes.


If your Shellac removal takes longer than 5 minutes, here are a few reasons that may happen:

  1. You buffed the nail plate before applying Shellac.
  2. You didn’t finish the Shellac manicure with XPress5 Top Coat.
  3. You aren’t using CND Shellac Nourishing Remover & Foil Remover Wraps together.

Think of Shellac removal as a two-sided coin. On one side, you have the application process. On the other, you have the removal process.

Each of these processes seem completely different from each other, but they both serve a SUPER important role in safe, non-damaging removal (as well as easy application!).

Let’s look at the “heads” side of the Removal Coin: Application.

The part of the application that is INTEGRAL to removal time: the Shellac Top Coat used.

If you’re looking for easy, non-damaging Shellac removal in only 5 minutes, use XPress5 Top Coat. Introduced to the Shellac brand in 2015, XPress5 Top Coat features a prismatic shine (excellent for embedding embellishments!) & real life 5-minute removal.

Shellac’s original Top Coat (with the gold label) offers superior shine with easy, safe removal in 8 minutes.

The Shellac Brand’s newest Top Coat, Duraforce, offers superior strength & durability with easy 15-minute removability.

All 3 Top Coats are part of the Shellac brand for the foreseeable future, so choose the one that best serves your client’s needs & adjust your removal time accordingly.

Another IMPORTANT part of application that affects removal time: Base Coat application!

Do you remember the proprietary (aka 100% original & patented) reason that makes Shellac adhere so perfectly to the nail plate? That’s right: POLYMERS!

Shellac’s top secret polymer technology adheres to the strongest part of the nail plate, the thick oil mantle. Buffing the nail, even with a “fine” buffer, can remove that strong foundation, potentially causing chipping at the extension edge & longer removal time.

Now, the “tails” side of the Removal Coin: Removal.

Now, the “tails” side of the Removal Coin: Removal.

Just as nail preparation & Shellac application, Shellac removal is SYSTEMIZED. If you want 5-minute, safe, non-damaging removal, use the system together as directed.

CND Shellac Nourishing Remover removes 20% faster than acetone alone & contains conditioning oils & a pleasant fragrance, making for a very comfortable, premium service for your client.

Another super important, but often overlooked player in safe 5-minute Shellac removal is the CND Foil Remover Wrap. Very often, these unassuming, beautiful little pieces of foil are overlooked in the name of saving money.

IMHO, they are worth the $0.80 per service to have the perfectly calibrated cotton pad, which holds exactly the right amount of Nourishing Remover I need to safely remove a Shellac manicure.

I don’t have to worry about using too much Nourishing Remover (wasting product & money!) or cotton pads that are too thin to hold enough solvent to completely remove the coating without damaging the nail.

The Wrap itself fits even the biggest fingers I’ve worked with & it truly prevents product evaporation.

At $19.95 a 250-pack, CND Foil Remover Wraps are a no-brainer business investment for my busy salon.

As with all things in our beautiful nail business, viewing Shellac removal holistically will save you money, time & your client’s natural nail health.

If you’d like to see Shellac application, art, & removal in person & get in on exclusive business-building benefits like being listed on’s Salon Locator so clients can find you automatically, join me for a Shellac Advantage class.

Looking for a complete Shellac & Vinylux class with a KILLER product kit (CND LED Lamp included!), salon tools & logo swag in addition to business-building perks of having the world leader in Nails, Fashion, & Beauty vouch for you? Join me for the oh-so-fun Master Painter class, either as a one-off or as part of a Grand Master series.

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