How to choose a lamp for manicure and pedicure

  • Kind
  • Lamp type
  • Timer
  • Power
  • Bottom
  • Equipment
  • Manufacturer


drying lamp — a device that accelerates the process of drying and curing (polymerization) of the coating applied to the nails. Unlike varnishes and acrylics, gel and gel polish do not dry out in the open air. These coatings necessarily require drying in a lamp.

Paraffin bath – a plastic tank for cosmetic procedures using heated cosmetic paraffin (paraffin therapy). Such a device melts and maintains paraffin in a molten state (heating temperature is 60-70°C). The paraffin bath is designed for immersion of the hands and feet, and elbows can also be immersed in separate devices.

The bowl of some models is covered with an aluminum layer, which retains heat longer and is easier to clean from paraffin. The power of the devices is 80-265 watts.

Lamp type

ultraviolet (UV, UV) — an outdated and inexpensive option. Suitable for drying all gels and varnishes, excluding LED gels. Disadvantages: slowly dries the material, needs to change bulbs every 2-3 months, adversely affects the vision of UV rays, heats up, has an increased power consumption, bulky, has a limited number of on / off cycles.

The resource of work is 5,000-10,000 hours. Suitable for beginners and home manicure.

There are two types of UV lamps:

  • appliances with electronic ignition circuit — cheaper, instantly ignite, but are afraid of voltage drops;
  • devices equipped with induction ignition scheme — more reliable, but more expensive and heavier.

Light emitting diode (LED) – works on LED lamps, does not heat up, compact. Dries only Led-active coatings. The service life of an LED lamp is 50,000-100,000 hours.

Gas light (CCFL) the lamp is devoid of the shortcomings of the previous device. Dries faster and more efficiently than other types of lamps, does not require replacement of consumables, does not heat up. It costs more than the rest.

Hybrid (CCFL+LED, UV+LED or SUN) — a 2 in 1 device that works with all types of coatings. A good choice for salons.

Lamp life CCFL+LED — 50,000-80,000 hours, UV+LED (SUN) — 30,000-40,000 hours.

Important: to choose the right cosmetic material, pay attention to its labeling. It allows you to evaluate the compatibility of the product with a specific type of lamp:

  • «UV» – for UV, gas light and SUN lamps;
  • «LED» – for LED and hybrid models;
  • «UV/LED» — for all types of lamps.


The timer allows you to set the duration of polymerization. UV lamps and CCFL models dry the varnish for 2-3 minutes or more, other types of lamps will cope with this task in 30-60 seconds.

Within the specified values, the drying time of the nails is regulated depending on the specific situation: 60; 120 and 180 seconds (UV and CCFL), 10; 30 and 60 seconds (other types). SUN lamps have a drying time of 10; thirty; 60; 99 and 120 seconds.


The speed of drying and curing of the coating applied to the nails depends on this parameter. The unit of measure is watt (W). Power is determined by the type of lamp:

  • UV lamps – 36-54 W;
  • LED –9-12 W;
  • gaslight – 12-18 W;
  • hybrid – 24-36 W (CCFL+LED), 48 W (UV+LED).

Also pay attention to the correspondence of power to the size of the device:

  • compact devices for 1 finger — 1-6 W; rarely used;
  • dryers per hand — from 24 W (UV lamps), from 9 W (LED); the most common and convenient option;
  • bulky lamps for 2 hands — 48 W (UV lamps), 12-18 W (LED); exclusively saloon apparatus.


Bottom missing / removable / retractable — makes it easy to change light bulbs and perform pedicures. Removable / retractable bottom is easy to disinfect (needed for professional work).

Mirror — contributes to high-quality polymerization of the varnish coating due to the uniform distribution of UV rays. This is especially important in the process of nail extension.


Display – Displays a countdown timer, making it easier to use the lamp.

Motion Sensor — automatically turns on the lamp when you put your hand in the camera. To turn off the device, just remove your hand.

Fan — protects the UV lamp from overheating during operation. Contrary to popular belief, the fan does not reduce the burning sensation as the applied coating dries and cures.

Cover-curtain – closes the interior of the lamp. This ensures the protection of light-emitting elements from cosmetics, dirt, dust. In the semi-closed position, the shutter cover protects the eyes from UV radiation.

Touchpad – simplifies the use of the lamp.

heating controller (paraffin baths) — allows you to adjust the heating intensity depending on the situation.

Paraffin baths are completed with a hand rest, cellophane gloves, socks, mittens.


Today, a huge number of Chinese no-name lamps for drying gel polishes are on the market. Low cost, simple functionality and design make them highly popular. The main disadvantage of such models is low reliability and lack of warranty: they are not expensive, but they break quickly. For home needs or a novice master, such a lamp is quite enough.

Among Chinese manufacturers, the Sun brand should be singled out separately — it has long entered the professional market with warranty service. Instruments can be purchased from many dealers. The lamps are reliable, work for a long time, suitable for both home and professional use, the price segment is average.

Also, products of many local, Russian and Chinese brands can be attributed to good lamps in terms of price / quality ratio: JessNail, RuNail, Planet Nails, Polaris and Irisk, as well as the British brand Solomeya. The same middle price segment, nice design, reliability and wide functionality make them popular in all areas of the nail industry.

The most expensive devices can be considered lamps of professional nail brands, for example, OPI, Gelish, CND, Harmony. As well as lamps from manufacturers of conventional household appliances, for example, Beurer, Camry and others. The main disadvantage is the high cost. Some manufacturers produce lamps that work exclusively with «native» coatings. For home use, such lamps are not needed, for salon use they also lose to more budgetary and simple counterparts. It is worth purchasing only if you plan to work with a specific brand of nail materials. In this case, the devices will become a fashion addition.

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