How to Dry Nail Polish Fast, How long it takes, Best Quick Dry Brands

How long does it take for nail polish to dry including in between coats? Drying your nails polish fast after a manicure process can be such a tricky task especially if do have sufficient time and the right tool kits. In this article find out tips and ideas on how to dry your nail lacquer quick at home, best quick dry nail polish brands and how to make dry nail polish wet again.

How Long does it take for Nail Polish to Dry+ in Between Coats

This is one of the most popular question asked by not just beginners but also those who have more than little experience in nail polish and art.
So what is the exact time? There are quite a number of factors that determine the time nail polish will take to dry completely. What does this imply? There is no exact time. The time is dependent on the factors.

It can be a range of between one hour(60 minutes) to 24 hours/ a full day. This time applies for finger nails, toes and it can at the salon or at home.

Factors that determine the time

The type of nail polish

Nail polishes are not created equal. Depending on the purpose the polish is created for, some will dry fast while others will take ages. As you will shortly there are some brands that are known to dry fast.

The ingredients in a nail lacquer

What the polish is made up can also determine the time. For instance, formaldehyde-free polishes take more time to dry

The thickness/number of coats or layers

The coats include base and coats plus the layer of the polish that goes in between them. It is quite obvious that the more the coats the longer it will take for the polish to dry.

Quality of the nail polish.

New and fresh polish that is of good quality will dry within the normal time or even faster while old, inferior, poorly stored polish won’t dry fast because of the thickness.

How long to let Nail Polish dry between Coats

The above discussion was basically general. What about the duration you should let the polish to dry between coats?
According to nail gurus like Essie Weingarten, it is two minutes! That is 2 full minutes between the base coat and the color, two minutes between color coats, and then two minutes before the top coat goes on. Essie, says that’s all you need to wait in between to get a dry enough surface to get the next layer to stick.
However, the two minutes are applicable when you apply thin, even coats. You may need to be more patient especially if you are applying the color in thick layers. As mentioned earlier, thick will take more time to dry.

How to dry nail polish fast, how long it takes, best quick dry polishes
Drying Nail Polish

How to Dry Nail Polish fast and why it matters?

Why dry nail fast/quick?

Nail Polish application can be a challenging task for both newbies and those that have been painting their nails for years. One of the most common challenges is getting it to dry fast as nobody wants to wait forever to wear their shoes or do something else because their nail polish hasn’t dried yet. Inevitably, the nail polish has to be completely dry before you engage in other tasks as you’ll risk ruining it and you’ll have to reapply it once again.

Since you don’t want to waste precious time and effort like that, it’s best to look out for formulas that dry fast or make it dry fast yourself by following a few tips and tricks.

How long does fast dry nail polish take to dry?

Typically most nail polishes take anywhere from 30 seconds to a couple of minutes to dry out completely. Fast dry nail polishes are designed to cut this time in half and take less than 30 seconds to dry out completely. It depends on the formula as different brands have different drying times and not one formula dries the exact same time as another.

How do you Dry nail Polish fast?

There are actually many ways to make your nail polish dry faster. The first is to buy a quick drying nail polish so you don’t have to do anything else yourself. The second way is to use tools or simple techniques to make it dry quicker, regardless of its formula. The following section summarizes all the main ways for doing this at home.

How to dry thick nail polish fast

How to make Nail Polish dry fast at Home


Hairspray can be used for drying out the nails faster because of its alcohol and oil content, which sit on top of nail polish and make it dry faster. If you want to use this method, wait a few seconds after you’ve applied your nail polish and spray at 8-10 cm distance from the nails, starting from your thumb to the rest of your fingers.

Pam Cooking Spray

The famous pam cooking spray can also be used to dry nails faster as well as give them a natural, glossy finish. To use PAM for this purpose, simply spray on top of you nail polish at a 3 inch instance. Be careful not to spray too much as this will make nail tips look oily and ruin the nail polish.

Ice Cold Water

Ice Cold Water is one of the most popular methods for drying out nail polish faster. This is because nail polish ingredients freeze when they come into iced cold temperatures and they dry out faster. To use this nail beauty hack, fill a small bowl or bucket with ice cold water and some ice cubes to keep that way for longer. After you apply your nail polish, submerge your nails into the water for 2-3 minutes and let them dry out naturally, without using a towel.

Olive Oil

Olive oil is great for both drying out your nail polish faster, and giving it a nice glossy sheen. If you want to try out this method, all you need to do is transfer a few teaspoons in a clear/empty nail polish bottle and then gently apply the olive oil with the nail polish brush onto your nails.

UV Nail Lamp/Heater

Although UV nail lamps are designed mainly for curing gel and acrylic polishes, they can also be used to dry nail polishes faster. To use it, simply turn it on, place your nails inside and cure for 1-2 minutes. Repeat the same process on the other hand.

UV Lamp Nail Polish Dryer

Hair Dryer

Probably the most popular method, the hair dryer can be used for drying out nail polish as well, apart from hair. To use the hair drier for this purpose, turn on and set on low to medium setting and let the air flow onto your nails for 30 seconds to a minute (distance from nails should be around 6 inches). It’s best to avoid using too hot temperatures as these will make you feel burned and won’t dry your polish much faster.

Quick Dry Top Coat.

If you want to have a handy product for setting your nail polish while drying it out faster, you could try out a quick dry top coat. Sally Hansen’s Insta Dry Top Coat and Essie. Find more details on best top coat nail polish guide

Best Quick Dry Nail Polish Brands & Reviews

The best quick dry nail polish brands that do what they promise, according to beauty experts and online beauty reviewers are as follows:

  • Sally hansen’s Insta Dry Nail Color ($3.99). Available in 20 beautiful and popular shades, this nail color dries up in just a few seconds/less than a minute.
  • Revlon Top Speed Fast Dry Nail Enamel ($4.99). One of the top rated quick dry and inexpensive quick drying polishes, this product makes your polish dry in less than a minute without the need to do anything else.
  • Rimmel’s 60 second nail polish ($3.99). A popular U.K brand that claims to offer gorgeous color while drying out in a minute. Although online reviewers claim that it takes a tad longer than a minute to dry out, it’s still a good quick drying option.
Best quick dry nail polish sally hansen revlon top speed
Sally Hansen & Revlon

Tips and Ideas on how to choose a quick drying nail polish

Although there are not much quick drying nail polishes available, when choosing the best product for you, you better consider the following:

  • Always buy from reputable places. Some places may store their products in inappropriate conditions that might alter the product’s consistency. If you are going to buy a quick drying nail polish online, make sure that the seller is high rated and ask for the expiry rate so you don’t end up with an expired or soon to be expired product.
  • Check the product yourself to see if does work, by trying out an open sample if available. On the downside, open testing products are thicker in consistency than unopened bottles and this might give you different results.

How to make Dry Nail Polish Wet Again

Has your nail polish dried out before the expiry date? How do you make it work again? Is it possible to make it liquid again without a remover or thinner? Below are ideas on how to go about fixing or restoring you dry nail paint.

Using nail Acetone Nail Polish Remover

The most common solution is to use acetone or any other nail polish remover with 100% acetone.
Pour a few drops of a polish remover of your choice into the bottle with dried out nail polish. Let this sit out for an hour or two until polish is completely melted. When it seems to be completely liquified stir with the nail polish brush.
Note: make sure it is a few drops of the acetone remover. Too much acetone will mess up the whole hack

Using Nail Polish Thinner

Add the thinner, one drop at a time, into the bottle containing the polish. Avoid many drops at the same time since it will make the polish too thin.
After each drop close the bottle tightly, and roll it between your hands and then check if the polish is at a usable state. If not, add another drop and roll again until it is wet enough to be used.

Without a Remover or thinner

Warm it

Boil water in container for about 3 minutes
Place the tightly closed bottle of dried out nail polish in the container containing the boiled hot water. Let it sit for about 15-30 minutes.

How to make dry nail polish wet again
Nail polish in hot water

Use your hands

This is method cannot work for very dry nail polish. It is good for slightly thickened nail lacquer. It is the simplest…Roll the bottle back and forth between the palms of your hands. Turn the bottle upside down once, allowing color to redistribute. This may work to loosen up the polish

If the nail polish is past its expiry date save your energy and time by simply throwing it away…it wont be of any help. Get a new one.
Try applying the nail polish on a paper before you apply it on your nails to make sure it works.
You should also make sure you clean the brush in order to make it work properly and so it doesn’t have any polish remnants.

Originally posted 2021-01-01 08:29:20.

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