If you have an upcoming flight, you might be wondering if you can bring nail polish on the plane.
According to TSA regulations, you can bring nail polish on a plane in both your carry on and checked bags, but if packed in your carry on, each bottle must not exceed 3.4oz/100ml.
But what about nail polish remover?
Can you also use nail polish on a plane?
What about if you want to bring other nail care items on a plane?
Let’s find out.
Table of Contents
- 1 Can You Bring Nail Polish on a Plane?
- 2 How to Pack Nail Polish When Flying
- 3 Will Nail Polish Explode on a Plane?
- 4 Can You Use Nail Polish on a Plane?
- 5 Can You Bring Nail Lacquer on a Plane?
- 6 Can You Bring Nail Polish Remover on a Plane?
- 7 Can You Bring Other Nail Care Items on a Plane?
Can You Bring Nail Polish on a Plane?
Carry on Bags
The TSA have a rule called the 3-1-1 Rule that forbids passengers from packing any liquid, gel or aerosol in a container larger than 3.4oz/100ml in their carry on.
This means that as long as any individual bottle of nail polish you want to bring on a plane does not exceed 3.4oz/100ml, you won’t run into any problems.
When it comes to packing nail polish in your checked bags, the TSA state that:
“The total aggregate quantity per person cannot exceed 2 kg (70 ounces) or 2 L (68 fluid ounces). The capacity of each container must not exceed 0.5 kg (18 ounces).”
We don’t know anyone who would pack anywhere close to that amount of nail polish in their checked bags, so you will be fine regardless of how much you love to experiment with nail polish and paint your nails, or even you’re a nail technician.
Domestic vs. International Flights
The above regulations are set by the TSA, so only apply to the USA.
When flying internationally, regulations may differ, though you should still be fine to bring nail polish on a plane.
Regulations may differ because nail polish uses an acetone base, which is flammable and considered a fire hazard that can put the safety of passengers and the cabin crew at risk if a bottle explodes.
Regardless if you’re flying to Canada, Mexico, the UK, Europe or any other destination, you should still be fine and likely won’t run into any issues.
People have run into issues when traveling from China, though, so you may want to keep that in mind.
All airlines follow TSA regulations.
So regardless if you’re flying with a regional or major air carrier like Southwest, Delta, American Airlines, United, or any other airline, you will be fine to bring nail polish on a plane in your carry on as long as each bottle doesn’t exceed 3.4oz/100ml.
How to Pack Nail Polish When Flying
The best way of packing nail polish for flying will depend on whether you are planning to place the bottles in your carry on or checked bags.
Packing Nail Polish in Your Checked Bags
- Decide what shades to bring
- Arrange each nail polish in the shape of your make-up bag
- Wrap the nail polish in bubble wrap
- Place the nail polish in your make-up bag
You may also want to consider buying a Nail Polish Organizer Bag to guarantee that your nail polish will make it to your destination in one piece without at any risk of damage or leaking.
Packing Nail Polish in Your Carry on Bags
- Decide what shades to bring
- Make sure each bottle does not exceed 3.4oz/100ml
- Place each nail polish bottle in your single quart-sized liquids bag
Will Nail Polish Explode on a Plane?
It is possible that nail polish can explode on a plane, though it is unlikely.
It’s a possibility due to the change in air pressure that occurs when flying at 35,000 feet.
Make sure that each nail polish you bring with you is shut completely airtight to reduce the likelihood of it exploding on a plane.
Can You Use Nail Polish on a Plane?
Most airlines do not have an official policy preventing passengers from using nail polish on a plane, but request that it should not be used onboard.
Generally, if you are seen using nail polish on a plane, not only will other passengers get annoyed due to the smell, but you will usually be asked by a flight attendant to stop painting your nails for the comfort of other passengers.
Can You Bring Nail Lacquer on a Plane?
The main difference between nail polish and nail lacquer is the finish, with lacquers having a glossier, smoother finish.
When it comes to bringing nail lacquer on a plane, though, there is no difference.
Nail lacquer is allowed in your carry on as long as the bottle does not exceed 3.4oz/100ml, and in your checked bags if the total aggregate quantity does not exceed 2 kg (70 ounces) or 2 L (68 fluid ounces).
The capacity of each container must also not exceed 0.5 kg (18 ounces) or 500 ml (17 fluid ounces)
Can You Bring Nail Polish Remover on a Plane?
According to the TSA, nail polish remover is allowed on a plane in both your carry on and checked bags.
Just like with nail polish and lacquer, the same rules apply, which means that nail polish remover is allowed in your carry on bags as long as the bottle does not exceed 3.4oz/100ml, and is also allowed in your checked bags if the container is no larger than 18 ounces.
Can You Bring Other Nail Care Items on a Plane?
- Nail Clippers: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
- Scissors: Yes, but only if the blade is less than 4 inches (2.36 inches if flying from international airports)
- Tweezers: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
- Nail File: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
- Cuticle Pusher: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
- Nail Brush: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
Ella Dunham, a Freelance Travel Journalist and Marketing Manager, boasts an impressive career spanning eight years in the travel and tourism sectors.
Honored as one of "30 Under 30" by TTG Media (the world’s very first weekly travel trade newspaper), a "Tour Operator Travel Guru" and "Legend Award" winner, Ella is also a Fellow of the Institute of Travel, a Member of the Association of Women Travel Executives, has completed over 250 travel modules, and hosts travel-focused segments on national radio shows where she provides insights on travel regulations and destinations.
Ella has visited over 40 countries (with 10 more planned this year).