Nutrition and Wellness Blog

Recipes and tips from a Functional Dietitian Nutritionist

Is Your Nail Polish Toxic?

Jul 2021 | Health and Wellness

Did you know June 1st was National Nail Polish Day? Nail polish companies around the world are promoting their brands and colors for this summer. What’s your favorite color? I’m a classic red girl. With nail salons closed, I’ve been sporting a natural look. Now that the world is starting to open up, many of us are jumping at the chance to get a nail treatment. I know my cuticles could use a little TLC. Before you go running into your nail salon, I want you to take a minute to think about the nail polish brands you use. Many of us make a concerted effort to eat well and exercise regularly to promote health. Did you know that the ingredients in nail polish could adversely impact your health? Many nail polish brands include three toxic ingredients: formaldehyde, toluene and dibutyl phthalate.

Formaldehyde: Chronic exposure may result in cancers related to the throat, nose and blood. Also, formaldehyde resin can cause skin irritation.

Toluene: Chronic exposure may result in reproductive toxicity, organ system toxicity and skin irritation.

Dibutyl phthalate: Chronic exposure can impact hormones and has been linked to diabetes and thyroid irregularities.

There are some brands that advertise they are free of these 3 toxic ingredients. The best nail polish brands are those that disclose all ingredients. These companies have nothing to hide. They often are free of 7 or more harmful ingredients.

You might be wondering how harmful are these ingredients. Your exposure with each treatment is minimal but if you paint your nails regularly, you are constantly exposing yourself to these chemicals which may have a cumulative effect. Occasional use has not been shown to result in long term consequences. In reality, the manicurist is at the greatest risk. The good news is that you do not have to forego nail polish entirely. Just make smart choices and bring your nail polish with you to your next appointment. Here are a few of my favorite products!

Dazzle Dry (10+ free)

Ella & Mila (7+ free)

Poofy Organics (12+ free)

Piggy Paint (7+ free – great nail polish for kids!)

Yapa (10+ free)

Zoya (10+ free)

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