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When you walk past conventional nail salons there is a distinct chemical smell that you just cannot ignore! Have you ever thought about the impact of having products that smell that way lacquered onto your living, breathing nails? Unfortunately beauties, the impact can be quite severe! But don’t fear! We have some amazing alternatives for you!
Here’s our guide to keeping your nails (and body), chemical free!
Why conventional nail polishes are bad news!
Your nail bed can absorb chemicals just as the rest of your skin can. Conventional nail polishes are really a cocktail of chemicals applied to your nails and for sometimes EXTREMELY prolonged periods of time (we’ve all been there with two month old nail polish on our toes!) Not only are these toxins bad for our health, but also the health of the environment! That’s right! When you eventually take the polish off, the cotton pads you throw away soaked in chemicals inevitably end up as toxic waste in landfill.
Conventional nail polishes are a cocktail of chemicals!
What is in your nail polish? What does 3, 5 and 7 free mean?
3-free! Three free nail polishes are free from the top three chemicals found in nail polish are:
- Dibutyl Phthalate - used to make plastics more flexible. This toxic chemical is banned in the EU and is a proven cause of liver and reproductive toxicity as well as hormonal disruption.
- Formaldehyde - an industrial strength preservative which gives nail polish it’s chemical smell. It is recognised by the International Agency for Research on Cancer as a human carcinogen.
- Toluene - a highly toxic chemical found in petroleum that gives nail polish a smooth finish (and also gives off that chemical paint smell). It is an irritant that can cause kidney, liver and respiratory damage.
5 free! Free from the above three as well as the following:
- Formaldehyde Resin - used as a hardener to give a shiny finish to the nail polish. An irritant that can cause headaches, tiredness and dermatitis
- Camphor - a plasticiser that has been banned in Canada. It gives nail polish a glossy finish, which can result in yellow and brittle nails, not to mention liver and neuro toxicity too!
7 free! All of the above free and also without:
- Ethyl Tosylamide - another plasticiser used to make nail polish dry faster. With antibiotic qualities it has been banned in the EU for fear of increasing antibiotic resistance!
- Xylene - this is what keeps your polish from drying out and getting too sticky. Dawn Mellowship in her book, Toxic Beauty (2009) lists this as an allergen, irritant and a central nervous system depressant
But it’s not all doom and gloom ladies! As always there are some amazing alternatives, so if you can't find a natural salon and aren't prepared to go DIY, grab one of our faves and simply BYO nail polish next time you're heading for a mani/pedi
HERE ARE SOME OF OUR TOP PICKS...
KESTER BLACK 5-free nail polish 'NUDE'
100% PURE 10-FREE NAIL POLISH 'gelato'
ZOYA 5-free NAIL POLISH 'LIVINGSTON'
TREAT COLLECTION 5-FREE NAIL POLISH 'CHERRY BLOSSOM'
INTENSAE 7 FREE X OFFENDER
Butter London 8-Free Patent Shine 10X Nail Laquer 'AFTERS'
FRESH THERAPIES NAIL POLISH REMOVER
CAN'T BEAR TO SACRIFICE YOUR MANI/PEDI PAMPER SESSIONS?
Tribe Natural Beauty in Bronte is a beautiful space offering natural, organic and toxin free manicures and pedicures! We’d highly recommend visiting Nicole for your next treatment!