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Can You Dry Regular Nail Polish with a UV Light?

Last Updated on April 25, 2022 by SulaBeauty Staff

We usually spoil a newly applied manicure as we are too snappy to wait for it to cure and are always seeking for quick ways to dry our ordinary nail polish.

A UV or LED bulb will not help expedite the drying time of regular nail polish. Traditional nail polishes dehydrate because the liquid element of the polish evaporates, which is mostly made up of volatile solvents like toluene, butyl acetate, and alcohol.

Furthermore, UV light from a UV or LED lamp will not help to considerably accelerate the drying of these fluids.

However, if your light generates a large amount of heat, it might be able to assist fast track the evaporation process.

But, it is not recommended to dry regular nail polish under a UV lamp. Because curing standard nail polish could take a very long time and far too much exposure to heavy UV light can be harmful.

When Drying Regular Nail Polish, Can UV Light Be Used?

There is nothing more frustrating than spoiling your fresh coat of manicure, particularly when you discover the fact that they didn’t cure as quickly as you expected. Certainly, you’ll want to make absolutely sure your nails are properly cared for.

That’s not enough to pick the perfect nail polish; you also need to consider how to cure them effectively. When gel polish is concerned, using a LED OR UV lamp is the right approach.

Gel nail polish does not finish like regular nail polish. They are cured or hardened through a chemical process triggered by UV light from a UV lamp.

Photo activators in gel polishes interact with UV light to produce a polymerization process, which causes the gel polish to solidify and dry.

However, hardly an LED nor a UV light will speed up the drying time of regular nail polish. Gel nail polish is dried with LED and UV lamps. Evaporative cooling dries regular nail polish. So, a UV nail lamp fails in making the normal nail polish dry.

Why Do LED And UV Nail Drying Lamps Differ?

UV light, either from a UV or LED lamp, is often used to dry or harden gel nail polish. UV frequencies have generally been used to dry gel nail polish.

The light strikes particles in the gel polish called photo initiators, or phytochemicals, that absorb photons and transform it into the energy required to propel the polymerization.  

When UV photons interact with those particles, they get activated, causing the gel to dry into a plastic-like material.

Led bulbs work in the same way, but typically produce UV wavelengths that are shorter, have a greater density, and have more intensity.

The photo initiators in the gel nail polish are targeted by these LEDs, allowing the gel to dry considerably quicker than UV. LED manicure lights are claimed to be healthier than UV manicure dryers because they dry sooner.

UV lamps have a substantially shorter lifespan than LED lamps. While LED bulbs are more pricey than UV bulbs, you will end up with a better and more cost-effective product in the long term if you use an LED bulb.

What are five tips for Drying Normal Nail Polish more quickly?

The difficult part of awaiting starts after you’ve completed applying nail polish evenly and without spillage. You must wait for the nail polish to cure completely.

This procedure takes roughly 10-15 minutes on average, however, it might feel like an eternity at times when time appears to drag on. Although the greatest technique is to simply relax and enjoy the procedure, there are instances when you need a quick fix.

You have errands to run and individuals to go see. A list of ideas, tricks, and even hacks for speeding up the curing process has been compiled.

Hairspray Can Be Used

At the pharmacist’s, you may buy a nail polish drying spray to assist your regular nail polish cure rapidly. However, if you have hair spray available at your place, apply to your fingertips in one fast spray.

Hairspray is an incredibly simple method of improving the curing of your manicure, and you certainly even have some on hand. Nevertheless, keep in mind that, similar to a nail polish drying spray, it only dries the upper surface of the normal nail polish and not the underlying layer beneath.

So, while you can get on with your day, as usual, be cautious not to damage your manicure until they have fully set.

Use a Nail Polish Drying Spray To Speed Up The Drying Process

The use of a nail polish drying spray can shorten the time it takes for your polish to cure, but it does not erase it completely. You will be dissatisfied if you put on heavy layers of nail polish and hope it to set immediately.

Smooth, thin layers of polish will offer you the greatest outcomes and decrease the amount of time it takes for the polish to set. A nail polish drying spray protects your polish while also shortening the time it takes to dry.

You can buy nail polish drying spray at any drug store or buy it online. According to anecdotal information, this approach only appears to dry the top coat of nail polish.

Allow your manicure or pedicure a few minutes to finish even though your nails seem dried after using the spray.

Use Ice Water Instead Of Regular Water

Although it may appear stupid, it is the most practiced trick in the book. As previously said, chilly surroundings assist in the curing process and putting your hands in chilled waterworks in the same way.

Fill a bowl halfway with crushed ice and top it off with cold water. Hang on a minute after you’ve finished applying your nail polish for the polish to rest and settle.

Then, for around a minute, carefully soak your nails in. The mixture will be jolted into position by the ice water.

Allow the ice to melt somewhat or discard any extra chunks so your fingernails don’t come into contact with them.

Apply Thin Coat

When getting are getting a manicure, the most crucial tip is to use thin layers.

It will take more time to cure if you apply heavy layers, and you don’t really want goopy polish on your fingers. 

While applying nail polish, be aware of the amount of polish on your paintbrush and wipe any extra polish.

It may appear to be dragging the process down, but it makes a substantial effect on the overall curing time.

Use A Hairdryer

A fan is frequently used at nail salons to accelerate the curing time, but any fan can suffice at home.

However, if you have a hairdryer with a chill setting, that will suffice. When drying, keep the cold button pressed all the time.

Hot air can generate air bubbles in your manicure and melt it, keeping it from setting. For approximately a minute, blow chilly air just a few inches from your fingernails, then carefully check to see if they’re sticking.

Please remember that using the dryer on high heat might also disturb and dries out all the cuticles. So make sure your heater is set to a low temp with a moderate airflow.


How do you tell the difference between UV and LED nail lamps?

The contrast between an LED manicure lamp and a UV manicure lamp is in the form of radiation emitted by the lightbulb.

UV manicure lamps and LED manicure lamps both produce UV wavelengths and function in much the same fashion. UV lamps, on the other hand, create a wider range of wavelengths, whereas LED bulbs produce a smaller, more focused transmission distance.

LED lamps are typically more expensive than UV lamps. LED lamps, on the other hand, last a lot longer, but UV lamps frequently require bulb replacement. Gel polish can be cured quicker with LED lamps than with UV lamps.

Can normal nail polish dry under UV light?

No, ordinary nail paint cannot be used with LED lights. LED light has various impacts on gel paint and natural nails.

When LED light produces a wave, it causes a polymerization reaction, which immediately cures the gel. Regular nail polish, on the other hand, has a different response.

Curing under such lamps takes a long period. If you keep your fingers under an LED or UV lamp for too long, you might not acquire the desired shade.

In addition, long-term exposure to radiation may cause a vitamin imbalance in the body. This problem could be caused by itchiness and a dark color. So, rather than ruining your beautiful fingertips, it is preferable to adopt a natural cure.

Why Does My Nail Polish Never Dry?

The majority of nail polish treatments should cure in less than an hour.

However, based on how many layers of regular nail polish are put in, it may take much longer for nails to air dry entirely.

The application of the manicure or pedicure is mostly responsible for the prolongation of the curing period.

The type of nail polish you apply has an impact on how long it takes to cure. Topcoat is crucial; missing it may cause your manicure to take longer to dry.

How to Make Your Nail Polish Dry Quickly at Home?

There are many hacks that may help you cure your nail polish faster at home. Several industrial quick-dry topcoats are on par with or less expensive than normal polishes.

Nail polish drying sprays are another popular option for speeding up the cure time of a manicure. Soak your nails in cold water for a few minutes to speed up the drying process of your lacquer.

By applying numerous thin layers of polish rather than one or two thick layers, you allow your nails to cure between every layer.

To cure gel nails, can you use any LED light?

Certainly, when you have an LED manicure lamp, it will be your best choice.

LED lights produce UV wavelengths that are smaller, have a higher density, and have more activity, allowing the gel to dry way faster than UV.

If you’re going to buy an LED manicure dryer for gel manicures, make sure you have the right gel system for the dryer.

It will exert an influence on the final output because gels are designed to operate with specific formulae. While LED lamps are beneficial and useful, the sad fact is that they can not dry all gel types.


It takes time and patience to naturally dry your manicure, but with a little preparation and innovation, you can get them to cure faster. If you want your manicure to completely dry, don’t smear the nail polish by moving your fingers about.

Take particular precautions for your manicure the next day after applying a new coat of polish.

Renew your manicure every few days with a light coating of quick dry top coat to keep it from cracking.

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