Safer Nail Polish Roundup

Guide to Safer Nail Polish version 3

You wouldn’t think nail polish was a complicated subject, but sadly it kind of is. Creating that colorful, hard, durable coating for your nails involves chemicals – and some of them are worse than others. So if you choose to use nail polish, it’s wise to know what’s in it.

Why It Matters

Since polish goes on hard nails, not directly on skin, you may think it’s not a big deal. But it turns out that the combination of solvents and other chemicals in nail polish make nails more absorbent. That combined with absorption via cuticles and surrounding skin, mean that these chemicals are getting into our bodily systems. As proof of that point, a study by Duke University and EWG found that participants who painted their nails had elevated levels of an endocrine disrupting chemical (TPHP) in their urine. Endocrine disrupting chemicals are known to interfere with normal hormone functioning, and can lead to weight gain and reproductive irregularities. Not good.

Chemicals to avoid:

  • formaldehyde and formaldehyde resin
  • dibutyl phthalate (DBP)
  • triphenyl phosphate  (TPHP)
  • toluene
  • camphor

Safer Nail Polish Brands*

As the truth about nail polish has been uncovered, more companies have been cleaning up their ingredient lists. All of the brands listed here are at minimum 5-FREE, meaning they are free of the 5 most common bad actor chemicals. Some go further, eliminating 7 or 8 different chemicals. In addition, some are water based and odorless, apparently making them even safe for pregnant women (although you should always check with your doctor first).

In terms of performance, they all have great reputations for quality. The only downside is that they can be harder to remove than conventional nail polish. I’ve found that allowing nail polish remover to sit on the nails for a minute before taking it off, helps quite a bit. That plus a bit of elbow grease will get the job done!

Guide to Safer Nail Polish // www.mindfulmomma.com

Mineral Fusion

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty free

Zoya

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Vegan

Aila

  • 8 FREE (formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, formaldehyde resin, camphor, triphenol phosphate (TPHP), parabens, sulfates)
  • Vegan

 

Guide to Safer Nail Polish // www.mindfulmomma.com

100% Pure

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Plus free of xylene, parabens, fragrances, phthalates
  • Vegan

Acquarella

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Plus free of parabens, lead, mercury, FD&C, coal tar
  • Water based
  • Odor free
  • PETA certified cruelty free

Honeybee Gardens

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Water based
  • No FD&C colors
  • PETA certified cruelty free

Guide to Safer Nail Polish // www.mindfulmomma.com

Scotch Naturals

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Plus free of all parabens, phthalates and fragrance
  • Odor free

Julep

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Vegan

Pacifica

  • 7-FREE (parabens, phthalates (dibutyl phthalate), toluene, xylene, camphor, formaldehyde, resin)
  • Vegan (including brush)

 

Guide to Safer Nail Polish // www.mindfulmomma.com

Black Dahlia Lacquer

  • 5 FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Vegan
  • Leaping Bunny certified cruelty free

Priti NYC

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Plus free of TPHP , xylene and all parabens
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty free

Keeki Pure & Simple

  • 5-FREE (formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor, and formaldehyde resin)
  • Plus no acetone
  • Water based
  • Cruelty free

Do you have a favorite safer nail polish brand?

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*Note: There are affiliate links in this post. If you make a purchase I may receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you). Thank you for supporting Mindful Momma!