How to Dry Nails Fast

fast drying nails imageWho has time to sit around after doing a manicure for your nails to dry. No one wants to risk smudging their nails and ruining all their hard work.

It is no wonder I receive many questions from readers wanting to know how to dry nails fast, so this post is dedicated to all those questions.

One of the easiest ways to dry nails quickly is with a nail dryer. You can choose between either a UV or LED nail dryer, they both have their benefits as mentioned in my previous posts.

If you don’t have the money to fork out for a nail dryer than you might prefer some of the cheaper options outlined below.

How to Dry Nails Fast at Home

Fast Dry Nail Spray

Nail drying spray helps dry your nails faster, generally within minutes. Here are my top picks based on reliability and price range.

Drying Nails Fast with Dry Fast Top Nail Coat

A fast drying top coat saves you time and can leave you with shiny, glossy looking nails. Who has a spare hour to let their nails dry anyway. Here are my favourites.


Methods for Drying Nail Polish Quickly and for Free

Here are some tried and true methods for drying nails faster at home.

Using Cooking Spray to Dry Nails

IMG_0497Sounds absurd, but cooking spray really does work!

Once you have applied your top coat, start spraying cooking spray on to your nails. Allow the oil to stay on the nails for 1-2 minutes before washing it off with water.

An added bonus with this is that it will make the skin around your nails softer as well. ūüôā


Freeze Your Nails

If you are in a hurry to get your nails dry then pop your hands in the freezer for a few minutes and wallah! Dry nails! It isn’t the most economical or environmentally friendly option but it works well.

Use a Blow Dryer for Drying Nails Faster

Blow dry your nails dry fast imageThis works only when you set your blow dryer to the coolest setting it has. Always try this out with the lowest power setting first!

The time it takes for your nails to dry will differ depending on the blow dryer you’re using and the power settings.

If you try to do this with a warm or hot setting it will stop your polish from drying.

Also, don’t put your nails too close to the blow dryer or you’ll develop bubbles in your nails. ūüėõ

Use an Air Duster

Use an electronic air duster or one of those keyboard dusters that spray out air to dry your nails. It works a treat!

Drying Nails in Cold Water

dry nails in cold water image

The old trick of plunging your painted nails into a bowl of ice cold water does work but it isn’t the best method.

Allow your nails to dry naturally for a couple of minutes and then submerge your nails in icy cold water for 2-3 minutes. Keep your hands still as moving them around can cause strange ripples in your nail polish.

Use Thinner Coats of Nail Polish

Sounds so obvious when you think about it. If you use thinner coats, it will take less time to dry.

More Tips on How to Dry Nails Faster

  • Older nail polish will take longer to dry.
  • With all of these methods it is best to set up your drying method before you start your manicure otherwise you run the risk of ruining your nails.

If you’re still not happy with the time it takes for your nails to dry then you should consider investing in either a UV or LED lamp to dry your nails. This will really come in handy and is an essential item in your nail kit if you are considering using gels, acrylics or shellac.

LED Lamp for Nails

Gel nailsThis post is for those looking for a LED lamp for nails, scroll to the bottom of the page for some great deals we found on Amazon. Up until recently nail LED lamps have been considered very expensive and were only affordable by a salon professional. As with all new technology the price has been becoming lower and lower with time and it is now very possible to get some amazing deals online.

 UV vs LED Nail Lamp Debate

If you are unsure whether to buy a LED or UV nail lamp here are some pointers about both sets. There is no such thing as a best nail dryer Рit just depends on what suits your circumstances better.

LED Lamps

  • Initial outlay is high but the price is dropping as these become more popular and are no longer thought of as only professional nail dryers.
  • Unnecessary to buy new bulbs as most LED UV bulbs last for up to 50,000 hours.
  • LED lamp nails products are becoming more popular as different nail suppliers release new nail polishes suitable for use with LED technology.
  • Reduced energy costs as less time taken to dry your nails.
  • LED light nails will cure in almost half the time taken to use a UV nail lamp.

UV Lamps

  • Work with most nail polishes currently being sold in the nail art market.
  • It is very easy to find a cheap UV nail lamp for home or salon use. There are great deals to be found on Amazon.
  • There are currently more options for UV lamps and UV curing nail polishes. You can purchase UV nail kits that come complete with everything you need.
  • If you want to read more about good quality UV Lamps, check out my earlier post.

With both UV and LED lamps it is possible to get some sun damage on your hands so it is always best to cover up with a high factor sunscreen or buy a pair of anti-UV gloves.

I’ve had a look over at Amazon and found some really good examples of different nail curing lamps.

If you are looking for a gel nail LED lamp that is considered one of the best. Then you should consider the OPI nail dryer as shown above, which has LED UV light for nails it also works well on Gelish polishes too. This LED gel nail lamp has;

  • Hand sensor activated
  • Built in timer
  • 1 year guarantee
  • Works with regular nail polishes

If you love Shellac then the CND¬†nail dryer could be a good choice, shellac only cures with UV light so don’t even bother looking at a¬†LED nail lamp for sale.¬†This lamp has;

  • 4 pre-set times in the programmable timer
  • Large enough to cure pedicures
  • Interior fan
  • Warning light for when to change bulbs

The Thermal Spa nail dryer is always a good choice as it is a brand known for quality nail lamps and you can get them at a really good price on Amazon if you look at the right time. Thermal Spa do both UV and LED lamps for gel nails.

Here are two Thermal Spa nail dryers, both are high quality products that come with 1 year guarantees, programmable timers and  they can be used with pedicures.

If you are looking for UV lamps for gel nails don‚Äôt make the mistake of buying a Conair nail dryer. They produce mainly fan based drying systems, most of which are battery operated and very slow. My friend bought one and she¬†has been very unimpressed with it, so it might be worth steering clear of these ones. The reviews of these on Amazon¬†don’t look too promising either.

funky nail art

I am sure with time that more nail polishes will come on to the market that are compatible with LED lamps. I really enjoy using a LED lamp as it saves a lot of time. A manicure that would take over an hour can now be completed in 30 minutes!! My only complaint with them is that I wish that you could cure Shellac with LED lights.

If you’re in love with your nail dryer and want the rest of the readers to know about it, share it in the comments or email me and I’ll include it in this list.

Below, I’ve listed some more reasonably priced LED lamps that are worth taking a look at. Having a nail curing lamp is quickly becoming an essential part of a lot of people’s nail art supplies kit.

3D Nail Art Supplies

3D Nail Art pics3D nail art supplies add another level of creativity to your nail art. A plain coat of nail polish can easily be transformed with a touch of glitter, rhinestones or beads.

If you really want to get creative with your 3D nail art you can create your own unique 3D designs with acrylic nail polish on top of your nail bed (like shown in the picture opposite). This does sound difficult but it doesn’t have to be with a bit of practice. I’ll provide more info and a tutorial video in another post.

I like 3D nails as I find that even if you’re not feeling creative to make some freehand creative nail art designs you can still have funky looking nails by using some cheap nail decals or rhinestones. These can add a bit of pizazz to your nails.

I’ve added this 3D nail art tutorial which has easy to follow step by step instructions. It will give you information on how to apply 3D nail art such as nail art bows and nail art strips. The backing music isn’t the greatest so you might want to mute the sound.

I’ve added another video that will give you some rhinestone nail art designs ideas and tips. The girl who made the video shows you how to make five easy and different nail art designs with rhinestones, she did this for a Facebook competition a couple years ago.

I like the way she uses nail glitter for the background for her nail art designs. If you’re a nail art beginner you’ll like the way she uses the fan brush to create this simple nail art design.¬†Again, the music isn’t the greatest so it can be worth muting the video while you watch it.

Where to Buy Nail Art Online?

3D Nail Art Designs imageIf you don’t know any reputable stockists for 3D nail art ideas then you might want to consider checking out the following nail art online shop.

TanaNail – They are providers of Japanese nail art and have some amazing 3D nail art for sale. They normally have some kind of sale or discount being offered on different 3D nail art products, so if you purchase a few items at once you can end up getting one item for free. They have a $5 flat rate on shipping worldwide which is good value. ¬†Some of their nail art products might seem a bit more expensive than other nail art stores but TanaNail have quality unique products that you won’t find at most nail art supply stores.

Also there is Born Pretty Online Store – they have the cheapest nail art products on the web and have free shipping with no minimum spend so you save extra money on postage as well. The Born Pretty range isn’t as funky as what TanaNail are currently stocking but you can always find something that is trendy there.

Fruit Nail Art Decals

These fruit nail art decals are an example of what you can find at the Born Pretty online store. A pack of 120 decals cost $1.79.

There are other deals on nail art stickers with lots of different patterns. If you like nail art rhinestones they can be found on their site too. Just have a nosey about and you’ll find a good deal.

Another great place to shop for different 3D nail art is Amazon. Here are some specials that I’ve found for you below.

Where to Buy Nail Art Brushes and How to Use Them

Nail art brushes and pensA lot of readers have been enquiring about where to buy nail art brushes and how to use them. So I decided to write a post so all of my readers can benefit from this information on nail painting brushes.

There are many different nail art brushes for nail art. Trying to decide which are the best nail art brushes and dotting tools for the look you want to create can be difficult so hopefully this post has taken the guessing work out of what to buy when it comes to nail art brushes and their uses.

I find that it is better value to buy a nail brush set rather than buy each brush individually, but everyone is different. For the best approach when buying your nail art tools, test out products that your friends use before purchasing nail art brushes and pens and any any other nail art tools for that matter.

Nail Art Paint Brushes

Fan brush nail artFan Brush Nail Art

These nail design brushes are great for giving an air brushed effect to your nails. You can layer and blend colours together or streak colours on your nails. These brushes are great for establishing the background for your masterpiece.


Nail Art Flat Brush

Flat Brush Nail Art

Use these brushes for creating that one stroke application of nail polish. As you can see from the picture opposite they are also great for painting on a thick line of colour on your nail. You can also use these brushes to blend colours.


Nail art striping tool

Striping Tool Nail Art

These fingernail brushes are perfect for creating fine long lines. Great for a design that needs precision like the tartan design opposite. The thickness of the line is dependent on how much nail polish is on the brush.


Nail art line tool

 Line Tool Nail Art

This small nail brush is perfect for making lines of any length for your nail art designs. You can create very detailed designs with this brush, it can be used to draw the outline of different shapes and add finicky details to your masterpiece.


Nail Painting Brush

 Nail Art Detail Brush

These brushes are great for drawing intricate details or designs. As shown in the picture opposite, this brush has been used to draw flowers. Flower petals are quite easy to draw with this brush all you need to do is place the brush flat on your nail before lifting it up.


Nail art dotting tool

 Nail Art Dotting Tool

Dotting tools are perfect for drawing dots but they are much more versatile than that. They can also be  used to create a marbling effect, swirls or zig zags on your nail. You can use them to blend colours either on the nail or on a palette.


 Where to Buy Nail Art brushes and Tools?

If you are looking for cheap nail art brushes than look no further than the Born Pretty Nail Art Store. They are an online store that do a lot great deals on different nail and beauty products.  You can buy a 15 piece nail brush kit for under $6 with free shipping.

Perhaps you are after a professional nail art brush or nail art brush kit. Viva La Nails is a website run by a qualified nail technician who endorses all her nail art supplies.

How Do You Clean Nail Art Brushes

Once you have invested in some good nail art brushes it is important that you take care of them. I’ve included a how to clean nail art brushes youtube tutorial as well.

Nail Art Tools

nail art tools at homeIf you want to get serious about your nail art at home then you should be considering purchasing some nail art tools. It can get very expensive heading to the salon every time you want beautiful nails. Nail tools for nail art allow you to be creative with your freehand nail art designs.

I’ve written this post so you can increase your knowledge on nail tools and their uses and so you’ll know where to buy nail art brushes, dotting tools and the rest of the equipment. Nail art can get expensive if you don’t know which nail art shop online has the best deals. I always buy my nail products online as I find you get such a better deal than walking into an actual shop.

Which nail art tools at home you put to use depends on what type of nail art and designs you want to complete.

The Basic Nail Art Equipment List

  • Top and base coat
  • Nail polishes
  • Orange wood sticks or cuticle sticks
  • Nail files/emery boards
  • Nail buffer
  • Nail scissors
  • Toe dividers (if you plan on giving yourself some funky nail art designs on your toes!)
  • Nail polish remover – whether you use acetone or a non-acetone remover will depend on what type of nail polishes you are using on your nails.
  • Cotton wool pads or a q-tip to remove the nail polish.

What Tools to Use for Nail Art?

nail art brushesWhat products you use all depends on what look you want to achieve with your nail art. For different nail techniques you will require different nails designs tools. Here is a rundown on what tools to use for nail art, these are not essential items but if you want to get serious and create some funky nail art designs then you will need more than just nail polish!

Nail art pens – if you like being artistic and creating your own look, nail pen designs might suit your style. Nail art pens allow you to make dots, lines and draw unique, finicky creations on your nails.

Nail art dotter tool – these are ideal for creating different size dots, lines and making flower designs. They can be really versatile.

Nail art brushes Рallow you to make a lot of different designs.  It is best to buy nail art brushes and not use regular painting brushes as acetone may ruin other types of brushes.

Nail art stamping kit – if you’re not very artistic or what to create nail art designs with a lot of detail, perhaps a nail art stamper and some image plates are what you are looking for. Konad are the pioneers of ¬†the stamping nail art revloution and have some great image plates to try out.

Nail dryer – a good nail dryer is a godsend and will save you a lot of time.

Shellac nail polish – if you want nail polish that won’t chip or smudge. Then shellac might be the answer.

Acrylic nail polish – you can either mix up your own acrylic or use acrylic tips. Acrylics are good for people who have trouble growing their own nails but will do damage to your nail bed in the long term.

Gel nails – you can either use soak off gel polish or hard gel polish that needs to be removed with a nail drill and can damage your nail bed. The soak off gel variety can strengthen your nails and is a good option for those who have weak nails.

Where to Buy Nail Art Tools

funky nail art designsIf you buy your nail products from actual nail and beauty suppliers you will soon be racking up a huge bill, it is better to look for discount nail art supplies online.

Born Pretty Store have a lot of cheap 3D nail art supplies, nail art brushes and nail art dotting tools. They also have free shipping.

Another place to buy reputable nail supplies online is from Viva La Nails, their prices are slightly more expensive that Born Pretty but they only stock quality nail art supplies. The founder of the website is a nail technician so she really knows her products and the customer service is second to none.

As always there are always tons of products available on Amazon. Here are a few of specials available at the moment.