How Long Does It Take to Dry Your Toenails After a Pedicure?

Aesthetician Who Rubs Cream on Womans Leg, Side View
Close-up of a woman's freshly pedicured feet. (Image: DAJ/amana images/Getty Images)

There's nothing like a fresh pedicure, but waiting for it to dry can be a pain. You have to be careful not to bump your toes into anything lest you destroy your meticulously-painted nails. You also have to have the patience to wait for your nails to dry. Instead of guessing, learn how long you'll be playing the waiting game.

How Long

The amount of time it takes your pedicure to dry depends in part on the type of polish you use and how much of it you apply. In general, it takes up to 2 hours for your polish to completely dry. Formaldehyde-free polishes dry a bit quicker than other types. Also remember the more coats you apply, the longer it takes, so if you've just applied one coat of clear polish your dry time will be much shorter than if you've applied a base coat, two color coats and a top coat.

DIY Pedicure Wait Times

It's generally advised to apply a base coat, two coats of polish and a top coat to keep your pedicure lasting the longest. When applying each coat of polish, wait at least 2 minutes between coats. This is the amount of time it will take for each coat to dry enough for ideal application of your next layer.

Speeding up the Process

Two hours is a long time to wait for your pedicure to dry completely. If you don't have that kind of time, speed things up. A blast with a cool hair dryer works -- be sure your setting is on cool as warm air keeps polish from firming. Or, grab a nail-drying spray from any drugstore to dry your nails more quickly. If you don't have nail-polish spray, try an aerosol cooking oil which will also does the trick. If your toes can handle it, try an ice bath. Fill a bowl with ice and cold water and dip your toes into it for 1 minute to solidify your polish.

Quick Dry Polishes

If you can, opt for a quick-dry top coat which will help your pedicure to solidify more quickly. This will create a protective, hard layer over your nails. Keep in mind that the polish underneath is still drying, so be a little careful. To be on the safe side, with or without quick-dry topcoat, stick with sandals and toe separators until you're sure your toes are completely dry.

REFERENCES & RESOURCES
Load comments
PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION

Copyright © 2019 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy. The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.