Nail polish has been prevalent in the American society for many years. It is no surprise though, that the beloved accessory is full of harmful chemicals, given away by the first whiff of strong smell you get when opening a bottle of said product.
According to the Huffington Post (2015), new research done by Duke University and the public health advocacy organization Environmental Working Group showed that our bodies indeed absorb some of the chemicals found in nail polish, despite popular belief.
One of the experiments done consisted of having two groups of participants get manicures, one group had their nails painted normally, with typical nail polish directly on their nails, and the second group wore gloves and had the nail polish painted on fake nails.
Then the participants’ urine was tested for chemical levels, and the women who had their nails painted directly had a sharp spike of the nail polish chemicals in their urine, while the others had almost no change.
According to the founder of Wellness Mama (2017), who is also a mother of three little girls, there are quite a few alternatives to toxic nail polish. Toulene, Formaldehyde, and Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) are a few chemicals she mentions that are found in regular nail polish. These chemicals can cause reproductive harm, dizziness, central nervous system issues, and some of them are even banned in Europe or used to preserve dead things in labs.
She therefore did some research to find some less toxic nail polish options. She says to be careful though, as not all brands are what they claim to be. Therefore, she made her selections off the Environmental Working Group Database. These were her three top picks:
1. Scotch Naturals
Scotch Naturals were her favorite brand. “The colors were great and they scored a 1/10 on the EWG database”. The “brand is free of the chemicals listed above and didn’t have a strong smell”. Scotch Naturals she says, is a grown-up version of the Hopscotch Kids brand, which is also a great option that is available in a lot of different colors.
Acquarella nail polish is also ranked 1/10 on the EWG database. This nail polish is water based, and does not contain any of the chemicals she mentions. It is also wheat free and vegan. “They even make a non-toxic nail polish remover.” “It is more expensive but it stayed on nails and didn’t have a strong chemical smell” (Yes!). Available in numerous colors, Wellness Mama’s daughters wanted all of them.
3. Honeybee Gardens
Honeybee Gardens nail polish is also water based, and free of the dangerous chemicals that Wellness Mama lists. It also has a low rating on the EWG Database, and they sell 25 different colors! Fun fact: this nail polish can be removed “with vodka or rubbing alcohol”.
After reading another article on nontoxic nail polish, I personally ordered a red Zoya nail polish, and even though the smell was just as strong as a regular toxic nail polish, I felt better knowing I wasn’t putting all those chemicals on my body, and the quality was just as good as drugstore nail polish. I will continue ordering different nontoxic nail polish to see which ones I like best, and will never go back to the unhealthy ones. Let’s think twice before using these products.
Winner of Best of Boston 2017 by Boston Magazine. Now, imagine a place where children are encouraged to make mistakes, two-year-olds are learning how to play the violin, and teachers are encouraging children to explore the limits of their potential.