how nail drops work

Do you hate to wait for nail polishes to dry?

I SO do. That’s why I almost only use Mavala nail polishes these days. I paint them on, and a couple of minutes later, I can get on with my life.

But most nail polishes can take 5 to 10 minutes, if not more to dry. That may seem a very short time, but trust me, it’s PLENTY of time for me to completely ruin my manicure. That’s why I love quick dry drops.

Admittedly, my first foray into quick dry drops was a disaster. The drops were too liquidy and I was too clumsy, so my entire hands were completely soaked in the thing.

But, I’m starting to get the hang of it now, and really appreciate how useful they are. So, how do they work?

How quick dry drops work

Nail polishes contain solvents that need to be drawn out, if you want them to dry quickly. The most common ones are butyl acetate, ethyl acetate, and isopropyl alcohol. These are all fatty molecules that don’t like water. So, how do you dissolve them?

By using the “like dissolves like” principle. Or, in plain English, with a fatty susbstance that doesn’t like water, too. Usually, that means silicones. Silicones are fatty, and are able to draw out the solvents to the surface of the nail polish, so they can everaporate faster. The faster they’re drawn out, the quicker the nail polish dries.

Pretty cool, huh? But, there’s a little problems. Silicones are great at drawing out solvents from the last layers of nail polish, but are often not able to reach those at the very bottom.

So, if you like to use the standard 3 layers of nail polish (in which case, I commend you, because anything more than 1 layer is wayyyy too much work for me), it may still take a few minutes for your manicure to dry completely. But, it’ll dry a lot faster than it would on its own, so it’s still worth using them.

The Bottom Line

Who said that silicones are bad? When it comes to nail polishes, nothing makes them dry faster.

Do you use quick dry drops? Share your thoughts in the comments below.