What is a Dry Manicure and Will You Like It?

a 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 a good manicure is to go waterless with a dry manicure.

So What is a Dry Manicure Anyway?

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.

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.

3 Benefits of Dry Manicures

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.

Dries 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.

Reduces 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.

Whether you are a client or a nail technician, it is important to remember that the client is always the priority. As a nail technician you should suggest services but not force everyone to do the same thing. As a client, you should be open to being pampered in a new way. At Salon Success Academy, we offer fantastic manicuring services and we also offer training to become a nail technician. If you are interested in learning more about a career in beauty and love doing nails, fill out the form to learn more now.