Make A Thing: The Best Nail Polish Remover Method Ever

Let me tell you guys a secret: I love painting my nails. Maybe this makes me a bad lesbian but whatever, I don’t care, I love it. I also love changing my nail polish color all the time, like every few days, which means I use a lot of nail polish remover. But holy shit, how annoying is nail polish remover?

My sister and I found this amazing kind of contraption thing where you just stick your nails into a sponge, swirl them around and voila! Your nail polish comes right off. We didn’t have to keep wasting cotton balls or tissues (which creep me out when they get wet and tear anyway for some reason).

Well, at $3.50 a pop I figured I could make the same exact thing out of some stuff I already had laying around. And it worked! Here’s my super duper easy foolproof method for the best ever way to take off your nail polish.

Nail Polish Remover Jar

Supplies Needed:

+ Jar (I used a small jam jar I had lying around but even tupperware would work, just make sure it has a lid!)
+ Sponges – I used two, but it depends on how big your jar is
+ Nail polish remover

Level of Difficulty: This week my niece had her fourth birthday party at a craft store and the kids all made customized letters. Nothing will ever compare to that level of difficulty.


1. Gather your supplies and measure your sponge against your jar to see how much you need to trim to make it fit.


2. Trim your sponges. I trimmed two long sections for the outside and stuffed the rest into the middle for optimum nail buffing surface.


3. Fill your jar up with nail polish, just enough to make the sponges wet without there being excess. You can always pour the nail polish remover back into the bottle. It’s not a stressful thing, don’t worry about it.




And seriously, that’s IT. That is all you need to do. It worked like a charm for this glittery nail polish and got it off in seconds. Glittery nail polish is maybe the most annoying kind of nail polish to remove, as the little glitter specks stick forever.


Seal up your jar and use for the rest of the life of your sponges, which you can flip as they get dyed with your polish, which takes my sister and I at least two months of weekly use. You can replace the sponges and the nail polish remover as needed.

This has been another installment of Make A Thing where we make handmade gifts for people! Or ourselves. Or our cats. Mostly our cats. 

Header by Rory Midhani

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Hansen is the former DIY & Food Editor of and likes to spend most days making and cooking and writing. She teaches creative writing at Colorado State University and is pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts in her free time.

Hansen has written 189 articles for us.


  1. I had my very first allergic reaction to one of those store-bought dip-and-swish nail polish remover pots. My fingertips all turned black! I’ve been afraid to try them ever since, but I mourn the ease of the process. This sounds like the perfect solution. You’re a genius, Hansen.

  2. How much swishing of the fingers is required? Why does it work better than putting some on a tissue and rubbing your nail? I don’t get it, but I want to (because I also love glittery polish)!

    • I imagine it has to do with the sponge’s large surface area. It looks like this doesn’t take much upfront investment or effort, so I think it’s definitely worth a try! It also keeps you from spilling acetone all over the place (am I the only one?)

      • you are not! i think i would like to try this by also cutting a finger-sized hole in the jar lid to minimize spilling even more? or some intermediate covering? like, a lid for when it’s not in use, and then a lid with a hole for using it without spilling.

        ….at some point, though, i’m just a queer girl sticking her finger in a hole. oh dear.

  3. Interesting idea, but not practical in the long run. You’re putting very harsh chemicals all over your skin (not nails) every time you use the process, which will make your cuticles crack and bleed in no time if you change up your polish often. I’d recommend it for infrequent nail-polish wear, but not so much for weekly use unless you want some sad fingers. Source: Used to have friends that worked in salons, they don’t recommend the remover jars for this reason.

    • There are much safer nail polish removers out there. It would be great to see some chemical-free options in these DIY posts.

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