For a long time I deprived myself of the joy of wearing glitter nail polish altogether because I simply couldn’t deal with the aggravation of trying to remove it! Of course, there was the foil method which was my saving grace for a while but let’s be honest, it’s not much of a time saver. The first peel off base coat I remember reading about was Essence‘s offering way back in 2012 and around that time, I was also reading a lot of stuff about PVA/Elmer’s glue being a cheap and easy alternative. With nothing to lose, I decided to give it a try and haven’t looked back since.
All you need to make your own peel off base coat is some PVA glue and an empty nail polish bottle. So we’re not really making the base coat itself, just facilitating its easy use on the nails!
The proper name for PVA glue is Polyvinyl acetate and I often see it referred to as Elmer’s glue in the US. It’s basically a water based craft glue that you’d find in any school classroom and if you’ve ever done crafts at home, you probably already have some lying around the house.
I picked up this bottle in Wilkinson for 65p and the bottle is from a polish that I used up. If you don’t have any empty bottles or would prefer a fresh one, you can buy them online from Born Pretty Store who have one for $2.99 here.
Cleaning the bottle
If you’re going to be cleaning out your bottle, you’ll need some pure acetone which you can get at Sally stores and most pharmacies. Fill your bottle about half way and give it a gentle shake. Any polish that’s left in there will melt away and pour down the drain. Repeat if required and when everything’s clean, rinse it well with warm water.
Don’t forget to make sure the brush, cap and neck of the bottle are clean as well. I used a combination of cotton pads and cotton buds to clean all the fiddly bits.
Stand your bottle and brush on a piece of tissue for a few minutes to get it mostly dry. It doesn’t matter if there are still a few drops of water inside as the glue is water based.
When your bottle is dry, simply fill it with glue and replace the brush.
Now, instead of your normal base coat, just use one of two coats of glue instead and apply your nail polish like normal.
A few tips
Make sure the glue is completely dry before applying your polish. You’ll know it’s dry when it goes from white to clear.
If you find it too thick, just add some water one drop at a time until the consistency is thin enough to easily spread on your nails.
This won’t prevent staining (in fact, sometimes it makes it worse) so if you’re using a polish that you think might stain, use your normal base coat over the glue.
You can also use this under regular old polish if you want to avoid the fuss of using polish remover altogether.