1. Ice Water  

A friend actually told me of this method while I was in college. The most inexpensive way to dry your nails is to soak them in a tub of ice water. In about 10 minutes, they will be dry. You can also put your nails under running cold water if you don’t have any ice cubes. 

2. Nail Drying Spray

Sprays definitely aid in the nail drying process. However, it is better if you on have one or two coats of polish on. Any more than that and your polish will remain wet; even after spraying. This option is best for the simple, quick, one-coat style.  I’m fond of DeMert’s Nail Enamel Dryer.

3. Fast Drying Top Coat

Almost every nail polish brand sells a “fast drying” top coast polish. Although most of them dry your nails some what, it still takes a while before your nails are dent proof. I would suggest this to someone who is in a rush… but not too much of a rush.

4. UV Nail Dryer


My parents bought me this machine two Christmas’ ago, and I thought it was heaven sent. Although you only need stick your hands into the machine twice at 2 minute increments for your nails to be completely hard and dry, be warned. The UV gel and light combination completely destroyed my nail bed. After using the machine consistently for a year and a half, my nails became weak, brittle, and flaky- worst I experienced in my life. They were so bad that I couldn’t even put keys on my chain for fear that my brittle nails would break into my nail bed. At one point I thought my nails would never grow past my fingers tips again. It took me six months of no color polish, Biotin pills, and strengthening polish to get them back to their normal, long length. 

5. OPI’s Drying Drops

This is, by far, my favorite nail drying technique. I discovered it a few weeks ago, and have been back to my crazy nail painting ways ever since. After painting your nails, just squeeze 1 to 2 drops on your nails, and your done! Your nails are done in LITERALLY one minute. I will say, however, that if you plan on wearing more than your average base coat/2 coats of color/top coat method, it will take your nails longer to dry. But they will still be predominantly solid after a few minutes. 
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