15 39 Votes

Gel nails turning yellow after a few days

Question by Guest | 20/11/2014 at 16:36

I hope that someone can help me. I really do not know why, but for some reason, with time my gel nails are turning yellow more and more.

After I was in the nail studio and I have just made my nails fresh, they are still looking nice. But after some days, the fingernails are always becoming more and more yellow and discolored. It primarily affects the white space in the front of my French nails, the area that should be white and not yellowed.

What can I do that the white color is remaining? It looks terrible now!



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26Best Answer
30 Votes

There are several reasons imaginable making your gel nails turning yellow:

  • Cheap Gel: The main reason for such discoloration usually is a bad and cheap gel that takes dirt and that is not comfortable with light. Who wants to have fun with nails, should not save at this point.
  • Tanning Salon: Some gels can not tolerate the light in the solarium. Remedy is a special sun gel or varnishing the nails before going under the sun.
  • Smoking: Typical yellow fingers of smokers. In some way, transparent nail polish may help which should be renewed every few days. Or better: Quit smoking at all.
  • Incompatible Materials: Sometimes gel gets stained because of working with fabrics that are not tolerated by the gel (for example, cleaning agents or hair coloring). 

I hope I could help you a bit.
Last Update on 23/11/2017 | Created on 22/11/2014

ReplyPositive Negative
28 Votes

In past, I often had problems with discoloration of my nails.

I got the tip to just include some glitter into the nails. With this, the yellow color is hardly noticeable.
27/11/2014 at 18:23

ReplyPositive Negative
1119 Votes

I am experiencing the same thing. The polish is turning yellow, sometimes after a week, now I noticed it as soon the manicure was done. I am not a smoker, nor do I use harsh chemicals. I could see the difference right at the salon.
04/06/2016 at 03:11

ReplyPositive Negative
1014 Votes

Same happens to me. I swear it's because I wear a lot of black clothes. I've ruled out just about everything else... Jeans too I think.
03/08/2016 at 14:00

ReplyPositive Negative
00 Votes

Mine turn grey or dingy and I have finally narrowed it down to black leggings worn almost daily and I still do the old school newspaper reading. As a side note, I noticed discoloration on one of my toilet seats from the black leggings too.
29/06/2019 at 17:40

Positive Negative
08 Votes

Mine did this. Pop them back under a led or uv light. They went back to close to normal. You want to put under a light till they get warm. Makes no sense but there's no explanation i can come up with just a solution. I've used different gels, primers and such. I even used a gel Polish that turned funky yellow. Try popping back under a light and let it heat up.
18/11/2016 at 19:54

ReplyPositive Negative
15 Votes

I'm also going to try nsi aitshield. It makes no sense to me. 8 hours after i used my gel as a top coat one hand turned really yellow. I did nails and went to bed so nothing touched them. I'm trying a top coat of airshield to see if it stops the yellow otherwise I'll need to use one of my pink top coats to make them look better.
18/11/2016 at 23:34

Positive Negative
711 Votes

I feel this is happening to me because of either my facial wipes or when I use Clorox wipes to clean.
17/01/2017 at 21:27

ReplyPositive Negative
28 Votes

Agreed! I noticed the yellowing of my French gel manicure after using Clorox wipes too. I also used Mr. Clean Magic Eraser the same day.
07/02/2017 at 06:28

Positive Negative
15 Votes

My beautiful pink pearlish color turns yellow. I love my nail shop but cannot wear this color without it turning into smokers yellow. I don't smoke or put my hands in anything toxic. Wth?!
04/02/2017 at 02:40

ReplyPositive Negative
-35 Votes

I have a theory that it's the salt in water softeners. I've had French pedicure when I lived in California and they always lasted a long time since living in Texas it has turned yellow and looks awful. I tried a lot of different nail salons and that is the only difference. We have a water softener here and no in California. Can anyone agree?
06/02/2017 at 07:22

ReplyPositive Negative
-26 Votes

My Gel nail tips do the same thing... I am not a smoker, or use any harsh chemicals.... I've been wondering if we have hard water or water with high iron levels?? 

I've thought and thought what it could be?? It's only started happening in the last year or so. I go to the same nail salon. Finally, I've been having them use color on the tips with glitter. The rest of my nail does not turn, just the white?? Thoughts????
15/02/2017 at 21:16

ReplyPositive Negative
-24 Votes

I started getting pink and white, paying a little more but my white tip stays white. I love gel, but when I want French mani, I just do solar.
02/03/2017 at 03:09

ReplyPositive Negative
711 Votes


This too has been happening to me recently. I have come to the conclusion..... It's my facial moisturizer! I use a moisturizer that contained high spf (20+) that I apply before my makeup. Have you ever worn a white dress/cover up/shirt or bathing suit that turned yellow during the summer?? It's because of your sunblock. I truly believe this is why my nails are changing. I hope this helps!
12/03/2017 at 15:52

ReplyPositive Negative
35 Votes

I had the same problem. I found out my nails were turning brown because of some new black leggings. Once I washed them, the problem was gone.
10/05/2017 at 08:22

ReplyPositive Negative
-15 Votes

I had this same issue. I type a lot for a living and figured out that it was what they were cleaning my keyboard with at work on the weekends. The residue left over from the cleaning agent was turning my nails yellow so to remedy that I wiped down my keyboard with a wet rag every Monday morning and never had a problem with it again.
29/05/2017 at 00:07

ReplyPositive Negative
02 Votes

I'm a resin artist and recently started using polymer clay and just looking for some quicker ways to seal some small pieces so was looking into gel nail polish. For what it's worth, I do know that many resins will turn yellow over time. And face it, nail gel is a uv cure resin. It's a major complaint of resin artists. This is especially true for pieces that are used outside, they can sometimes turn yellow very quickly. You have to be careful with the brands, Youtube shows some comparison videos if you're interested. This is probably true in your field as well.
30/05/2017 at 16:52

ReplyPositive Negative
00 Votes

I noticed the same thing this time I got my nails done. However, about a week later I dyed my hair (to cover up greys). I think rinsing my hair and usin my hands to run through my hair contributed to the color. I'll remember to do my hair before I get nails done next time!
23/08/2017 at 02:29

ReplyPositive Negative
04 Votes

I noticed that all of these posts are old.

Is anyone still having this problem? I’ve used salon gel on my nails for 2 yrs with a French Manicure and only the last two times my tips have turned yellow. I got them done yesterday and they already look bad.
17/10/2017 at 21:47

ReplyPositive Negative
-24 Votes

Why do you thing that all of the posts are old?

Look at the post above, it is from the end of August and you are writing in October.
17/10/2017 at 22:11

Positive Negative
00 Votes

My last 2 have turned within a day! Never happenned before and different salons.
01/12/2017 at 16:02

Positive Negative
00 Votes

It happened to me too. It’s awful. I had to do it again, and it happened again right away. I’ll assume it’s the kind of gel they use.
30/11/2018 at 01:44

Positive Negative
33 Votes

I thought it was my Clorox wipes too since my French would turn a grey color. But my manicurist told me it was lotion. Some lotions will do this so I stopped using it on my hands or would wash my hands off right after and it was great! The other day after a week I forgot to wash the lotion off my hands after I applied to my body and my nails started to turn. Bath and body works brand.
28/10/2017 at 19:54

ReplyPositive Negative
210 Votes

It's not just Gel nails! It also happens to regular Acrylic nails as well. It's the light that our nails are being put under to dry as well as the cheap old nail polish! Just because it's Gel doesn't mean it can't be cheap and old. The salons rarely do anything about it and blame it on the customer but it's really their fault for not realizing what they're doing and or using.
30/10/2017 at 22:32

ReplyPositive Negative
11 Vote

I am experiencing the tips of my gel French manicure turning a dingy brownish color and trying to figure out why.

My current manicure was done at a very nice salon in Texas using, what appeared to be Gelish brand, per the bottle. The issue started about a week after getting my new gel French manicure. In significant contrast I also had a gel French manicure done when I visited California, about 2 days after getting my manicure I flew back to Texas and my California manicure lasted for 6 weeks, the entire 6 weeks spent in Texas, and was still going strong and the only reason I had them redone is because of growth and I busted a nail. I did everything, literally everything in the French manicure from California, cleaned with chemicals, used all types of lotions, shampoo's, soaps, gardening, wearing new clothes, etc!! and my nails never changed in the slightest. 

Again all of these things done in Texas (meaning it's nothing being done in Texas causing the issue, and not the water either). I had No dingy, no discoloration, no fading in white tips or shininess, they looked the very same on the last day of the 6th week as they did the first day I got them. Additionally, the salon in California used the exact same led light for curing as did the salon in Texas, therefore that doesn't seem to be the issue. 

After reading many reviews, I am beginning to think it's the Gelish polish and top coat or whatever is in the bottle, labeled as Gelish, that was used is very poor quality. I believe what was used in California was a completely different product, which I plan to figure that out. There has got to be a reason and an answer. So far I'm not seeing a good answer.
13/08/2019 at 00:12

ReplyPositive Negative
00 Votes

Wow, in amazed that this is happening to so many people. I'm in Venice Florida and went to Sparkle. It was happening while they were doing me. They removed first layer and did again. Told me to come back if it continues. It did after one day. I went back a week later as it was over Christmas. They removed and redid it. Now after a week it is doing it again. They said they never had it happen before. They said maybe it was a medication I was on. My meds have not changed in a year. It’s never happened before.

I am in PCB now and will try my regular place and see what happens. Will keep you posted.
03/01/2020 at 17:52

ReplyPositive Negative

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