Tips To Make Nail Polish Dry Faster

Advice From Readers To Help Nails Dry More Quickly

Tips to dry nail polish fast: Try spraying non-stick cooking spray over wet polish to set it quickly.
Tips to dry nail polish fast: Try spraying non-stick cooking spray over wet polish to set it quickly. Dana Edmunds, Getty Images

No one wants to wait around for nail polish to dry. There are lots of rumors of ways to get polish to dry more quickly, but which actually work? These are the best quick-drying nail polish tips submitted by readers. Feeling scientific? Take a look at the chemistry behind quick-dry methods and learn which really work.


use cooking spray as one of the other ladies said.

it will work and leave your hands not too dry :) lol try it! they will dry asap no lie

— _ ms. know it all

This works for real

Get cold water and dip your fingers inside for about 5 minutes and let them dry (air dry) for 5 mins again

— Cass

Steam Works Too

While you have a pot of water on the simply just put your hands over it. Not only will they dry but they will become matte nails as well. So it's like two things on one

— Coco Puff

A little bit of everything...

Step 1, always apply thin coats. Step 2, blow on nails and run nails through ice cold water. Step 3, apply additional coats if needed and repeat steps. Step 4, wait for 20 - 30 minutes before doing ANYTHING. Step 5, can't be patient? Buy yourself fast drying nail polish and/or buy Seche Vite.

— Nail Lady

it helps

All you have to do is turn the cold to the sink on and put your hands in it, they will be done in 30 seconds.

— i help

ice water

put your hands in ice water.

it makes your nails dry faster


Ice water

Use ice and water works really well they will be dry before you know it

— Kiley

"quick dry" treatments ≠ faster drying

This is insane! Oil sprays and quick drying treatments do not actually make your polish dry faster. They do, however, reduce the likelihood that you're going to ding-up/smudge your polish while it's drying, by forming a slick surface on top.

Quick-dry topcoats are similar; they don't dry the polish underneath, but they do harden on top of it. If you're not careful, you can end up scraping your polish right off if the under-layers are still tacky when you reach into your bag for your phone. It still makes sense to use the above methods when you're trying to preserve a brand-new manicure. It's also important to understand how they work so you can achieve the best results!

— Kate

Nail drying tips

I was in a hurry and was about ready to just remove my polish. But to my surprise the cooking spray totally worked for me. My nails were dry almost immediately. Makes me wonder about the chemicals in the cooking spray though!

— Pat


So what I do all the time is I add a little bit of nail polish remover to the nail polish and mix it really good. You can add it to your colors and/or your top clear coat. The alcohol in the remover makes the polish dry much faster than ice water or a hair dryer. It also turned that old gloopy polish back to normal!

— anom

Ice and water

Dip your fingers inside a cup with cold water and ice and your nails dry up (:

— Tania


a hair dryer on medium setting it heats it or try sticking your hand in a freezer my seem crazy but it works

— savvy monkey


Do not use heat. All it does is melt the Polish! Most definately use ice cold water!!!! Dries 'em in a heart beat!!

— jazmyne

Nail fast dry

U can put on ur polish and then hold it in front of the sun or a heater and it'll be dry before u no it

— Hemali styles

drying nail polish faster

use quick drying drops!!!! thin coats and 1-2 drops per nail

— Bella

Heat works really well

Well my boyfriend gakupo just out of nowhere used a blowdryer on my nails and they dried asap.

— Kaito


Nothing works better then sit down and wait then the blow dryer helps too

— tatyani

try the spray

Buy quick dry spray next time and try quick dry polish

— Sannystac07

Less is More

Thin coats dry fast. Try doing multiple thin coats instead of one or two thick gloppy coats. Trust me, it works wonders.

— Ilty_909

Ice, pam

Ice cold water or Pam spray works really well. Also using a fan works

— Blah

Heat works

I always have a candle lit in my room so I just hold them over the candle for a bit. Don't burn yourself though

— Sienna

Freeze water and ice

1st put water in a bowl I prefer to put water in freezer but you can put in fridge then paint thin coats of nail polish 1 hand at a time is best then get bowl of water out and put ice with non painted nails and wait about 10 minutes

— Lucia

Cold works!

I just hold my hands in front of an AC while its on he coldest it can be. It gets cold but you can duck down. Just be careful that you don't blush the polish! Have fun! :)

— Nail Polish Princess

1 tip for drying nails :

Air dust them (I've never tried that but my friends have !) or put your hand in ice cold water for 3 minutes & dry them & spray PAM on them just in case !

— Hannah Mahone

Just for cooking?

Pam (you know, the cooking spray?) works wonders! All you do is spray your nails and leave it for about 45 seconds. You'll have to wash your hands good though, it makes them kinda greasy...

— Mandi

patience?? Boo!!

what i do is put thin layers on at a time so when one thin layer has dried, i put the next one aand so on...etc

— miss chatterbox qween

Apply another coat

Apply a coat of peanut butter and it will work as long as you don't touch anything, and then!! Later on you'll have a nice snack for later (:

— Angelica

Ice bath!

To help nails dry faster and help nail polish last longer on nails just simply dip nails in ice water!

It's quick and easy!

— Maggie

nail polish drying

Nail polishes are solutions of a polymer and need only to have the solvent removed. Blowing on them can cause blushing. Stand with you hands above a central heating convector, not electric and you should get nice glossy nails.

— norman nicolson

Top Coat Time

I just use a quick drying top coat. That way I can get my favorite polish without having to wait forever to get on with my life. It takes about a minute to get really hard nails, but I guess it depends what you use and how many layers of polish you added.

— Pretty in Pink

Heat works!

It's low-tech, but I just use a blow dryer set on high heat. It dries my nails in a flash!

— Tara

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Your Citation
Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Tips To Make Nail Polish Dry Faster." ThoughtCo, Jun. 27, 2015, Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2015, June 27). Tips To Make Nail Polish Dry Faster. Retrieved from Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Tips To Make Nail Polish Dry Faster." ThoughtCo. (accessed April 19, 2018).