Nail Dehydrator Or Primer First

Nail Dehydrator Vs Primer: Which One Should You Use First?

Are you someone who loves to do your own manicure at home? If yes, you might have come across these two common terms while preparing your nails for the perfect polish- Nail Dehydrator and Nail Primer. These two products might seem similar, but they have different purposes. In this article, we will discuss the differences between nail dehydrator and primer and which one should be applied first.

Nail Dehydrator:

A nail dehydrator, also known as a nail prep or nail cleanser, is used to remove grease, oil, or any other substance from the surface of the nail. The purpose of using nail dehydrator is to ensure that the nail bed is completely cleaned, and it removes any dirt or oils that make it difficult for the nail polish to stick to the nail bed. Nail dehydrator comes in different forms, like a liquid or a spray. It can be easily applied with the help of a cotton ball or a brush.

Nail Primer:

A nail primer is used to create a bond between the nail bed and the nail polish. It helps in extending the life of the manicure by ensuring that the polish doesn’t easily peel or chip off. A nail primer comes in different types, including acid-free, acid-based, and non-acid based. Acid-based primers typically contain methacrylic acid, which can be harsh on the nail bed and cause irritation, so they are not ideal for people with sensitive nails. Non-acid-based primers are milder and don’t cause any irritation to the skin. Some nail primers also come with added vitamins or minerals, which help in strengthening the nail bed.

Which Should You Use First: Nail Dehydrator or Nail Primer?

Many people are confused about which product to use first – nail dehydrator or nail primer. The general rule of thumb is to use nail dehydrator first, followed by nail primer. Nail dehydrator helps in removing any dirt or oil from the nail bed, allowing the primer to bond better to the nail surface. If the nail bed is not cleaned, the primer cannot create a strong bond with the nail, and the manicure will not last as long.


1. What is the purpose of using nail dehydrator?

The purpose of using a nail dehydrator is to clean the nail bed and remove any dirt, oil, or grease. It helps in creating a smooth surface for the nail polish to adhere to.

2. Can I skip using nail dehydrator?

No, you should not skip using a nail dehydrator. It helps in creating a clean surface for the nail primer to bond better, which ultimately results in a long-lasting manicure.

3. Can I use nail primer without using nail dehydrator?

You can, but it won’t be as effective. Nail primer needs a clean surface to bond with the nail bed. If the nail bed is not cleaned properly, the primer won’t be able to adhere well, and the manicure won’t last long.

4. Can I use a nail dehydrator as a substitute for nail primer?

No, you can’t use a nail dehydrator as a substitute for a nail primer. The two products have different purposes, and only the combination of both can help in creating a long-lasting manicure.


Both nail dehydrator and nail primer play a crucial role in preparing the nail bed for the perfect manicure. While they might seem similar, they have different purposes, and both are equally essential for a long-lasting manicure. The general rule is to use nail dehydrator followed by nail primer, and skipping either of them can result in a short-lived manicure. So, next time you prepare your nails for a new coat, make sure you use both nail dehydrator and primer for the perfect finish.