8 ways to make your nail polish dry faster

8 ways to make your nail polish dry faster

Gone are the days where we have to wait for…. well, anything? So for a lot of us, the concept of having to sit perfectly still while your nail polish dries painfully slow can be just about impossible. After all, we’ve got next day delivery, so how do we not have instant-dry polish yet?

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If you’re a repeat offender of making it through your first two coats smudge-free, only to have it all unravel as you impatiently reach for your phone, a snack, or to pet the dog, then we are relieved to tell you that you are in luck.

Below are eight excellent tips for achieving a smudge-free mani, minus the wait time.

1. Freeze those fingers

Doubling as an opportunity to cool down as the weather heats up,  placing your hands into the freezer for a couple of minutes will help to solidify your nail polish and lower your smudge-risk. Just watch out for the ice cube trays.

2. Use quick-dry drops

OPI Drip Dry Drops  is a game-changer when it comes to at-home manis. This magical product is designed to dry your polish in 60 seconds, all you need to do is drip the clear liquid on top of your wet polish and voila!

3. Or….. try olive oil

Known as a natural alternative to the quick-dry drops, olive oil is known to speed up the drying process of polish, while nourishing your cuticles at the same time.

4. Soak in a bowl of iced water

Similar to the mattifying makeup method  ‘jamsu’, soaking your freshly painted nails in ice water ‘shocks’ the police into place due to the drastic temperature change.

However, to avoid smudging, be careful not to knock your nails into ice cubes or on the side of the bowl. Running your hands under a gentle tap of cold water will have a similar effect.

5. Less is more…

Instead of thicker but fewer layers, painting your  polish on in thinner layers may result in fasting drying time –  even if this means you might require extra coats. The easiest way to manage this is by not picking up too much polish on the brush.  quick wipe off after every dip will help remove any excess.

6. Opt for a metallic shade 

Did you know metallic shades try faster? The finish typically requires fewer coats and is a fun, fast option if you’re in a rush. 

bh recommends: Sally Hansen Lustre Shine Nail Color, Natio Nail Colour

7. Blow (them) dry..

Using your hairdryer on the cold setting, give your nails a quick blast of air. Don’t forget the cold button or otherwise you may find your nail polish begins to melt away….

8. Quick-dry polishes

This product does exactly as it reads; simply paint on your nail polish and watch them instantly dry before your eyes. But be quick with your coats as there’s no time for leniency.

bh recommends: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Polish Collection

Main image credit: @betina_goldstein

Have you tried any of these techniques? Do you have any tips of your own?

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Comments 41

  1. I do ice water & thinner layers & it works! I’ve tried a different brand of quick-dry drops, but it didn’t work very well. Olive oil? I’m dubious.

    My tip: EMPTY YOUR BLADDER BEFORE DOING YOUR NAILS! This should have been #1!

  2. I don’t wear nailpolish much, mainly on my toenails because I type all day at work and it chips too easily on my fingernails. Have recently bought a couple of quick dry nail polishes.

  3. You think you don’t need to go – then you do your nails. It doesn’t matter what quick-dry method you use, they’ll get ruined & you’ll have to start again if you pop to the loo!

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