I was so excited over the weekend to finally have some time to get a new pedicure (I think my last one was in January – I know, I should be punished), get some shopping done, and relax with the fashion mags that have been piling up on my coffee table. The plan was pedicure first, shopping second, relaxing third. Well, the pedicure was great. I chose a deep and kitschy Boris And Natasha from OPI, and made sure to sit under that toe-dryer for 3 whole rotations before taking my freezing, thong-clad feet home – whereupon I waited another 45 minutes before pulling on my socks. After a day of shopping, I returned, pulled off my shoes, put my feet up to relax, and UGHHHH – noticed that the polish on my big toes had smudged. How was this possible? Would I ever be able to get through a full 24 – or even 12 – hours without screwing up either my mani or pedi? Since I know I'm not alone in my frustration, I decided to seek out the best products for getting your nails dry and preventing the dreaded smudge factor.
For a quick spritz and run, opt for the Orly Non-Aerosol Spray ($7.95) to help dry polish faster. The drying liquid comes out as a very light mist, so there's no danger of big, messy droplets falling from the bottle.
The OPI Drip Dry ($12-$24) acts like a fast-drying oil of sorts. It comes in a dropper, and after two drops of the liquid on each nail, your nails are not only dry, but your cuticles are plenty moisturized.
The market is saturated with tons of top coats all claiming to dry your nails in no time flat. So instead of feeding into the hype, I rely on the one that all my friends swear by (and of which I am now a huge fan): Sally Hansen's Insta-Dri Top Coat ($5).
To save yourself all the hassle of extra coats, why not try out one the new quick-drying nail colors. I'm particularly fond of Maybelline's Express Finish ($8) both for its fast-drying abilities and assortment of sexy reds.