April 25, 2018

What Is a Dry Manicure?

dry manicure

Most nail technicians are taught to do manicures with some warm water for a good soak to hydrate and plump the hands and nailbeds. But some people say that the new and improved way to get the best manicure is to go waterless with a dry manicure.

If you are a professional manicurist, one of the first steps you probably take is to have your clients put their hands into a manicure bowl to soak. With a dry manicure, you skip this step. Instead of water, you rely on a variety of lotions and heat treatments that will clean, hydrate, and soften the skin, in a similar way that water would, without its adverse effects. The oils from the lotions and the heat will also make the hands more baby-skin smooth.

3 Benefits of Dry Manicures

While dry manicures aren’t new, they seem to be back in the spotlight. Nail technicians realize that they don’t need to rely on water to complete a salon experience. For many clients, dry manicures provide all that a typical manicure does—and more.

1. Nail Polish Lasts Longer

When a nail is dry, it has a natural C-shaped curve. Once it is soaked in water, it often loses some of that curl. Also after a water manicure, the nail plate may not be fully dry when nail polish is applied, causing the polish to dry before the nail and making it more susceptible to chipping and flaking. The less change to your natural C-curve and the dryer the nail, the better polish will adhere.

2. Nails Dry More Quickly

Your clients have busy lives. They still love to be pampered but they don’t always have the time for a lengthy manicure. Dry manicures remove the soaking step so you can shorten the manicure.

3. Dry Manicures Reduce Cuticle Issues

The typical soaking plumps your cuticles during the manicure, making it more difficult to notice dry skin around your cuticles that may need to be trimmed. Lotion instead of water, also keeps your nails and cuticles clean and dry to better protect your nail beds, for overall healthy nails.


Making the switch from wet to dry manicures can be tricky as many clients might feel as though their manicure is incomplete without a warm soak. But if you explain the benefits to your clients, they might be willing to give it a try. You can even add a little aromatherapy to the lotion you use to make the manicure feel more luxurious for your client.


Do you have what it takes to be a professional manicurist? Enroll in the manicuring/nail care program at Salon Success Academy.

Salon Success Academy has five locations across the Inland Empire of California, flexible class schedules, and financial aid available for students who qualify. Call 1-877-987-HAIR (4247) or fill out the form to schedule a school a tour!

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