Nail polish has always been a very complicated subject for me, personally, because I try very hard to maintain an organic lifestyle across all areas of my life, especially where cosmetics are concerned. However, cosmetic companies do not make this an easy task to accomplish because of the chemicals that frequent all of their products from mascara, to lotion, and especially nail polish. Directing the spotlight onto a product that is notorious for its chemical base causes these “good intentions” of mine to become pretty irrelevant. Terms such as “Healthy” and “nail polish” are more of an oxymoron than they are realistic product. Therefore, the search for me has always felt like an impossible task.
It seems like no matter what brand I choose, I cannot escape the mile long ingredient label containing names like Ethyl Acetate, Camphor, Citric Acid, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite (what the heck is that?!), Iron Oxides, and Yellow 5 Lake, CI 15850. If you’d like to learn more about ALL of the ingredients typically found in nail polish I highly recommend checking out Amazon. The actual brand website can be very hit and miss when it comes to providing the information for their products. Therefore, exploring a specific brand (like Essie, for example) through a vendor site, such as Amazon, you are more likely to find a complete ingredient label. If you wish to check out the poor ingredient label for Essie nail polish on your own you can do so by clicking here.
Now I know some of you may be thinking, “Just forget the nail polish, duh!” And this is definitely an option! However, there are some of us (myself included) who just really like the way nail polish makes our toes look…I mean, it’s nice to have pretty toes! It’s fun to paint your toe or finger nails a bright red in the summer, a burgundy in the fall, a soft pink during spring, etc.
About a year ago, I made the sacrifice for the sake of my health (no matter how much I love nail polish, I never knew if the chemicals found in the nail polish product were contributing to my seizure activity). So I went completely nail polish free for over two years. My pedicure went from a gorgeous color change to a simple buff and shine. The truth is, over the course of two years of being nail polish free I saw zero improvement in my seizure activity. This sparked my decision to skip simplicity where my nails are concerned and add nail polish back into my beauty regimen.
However, just because I was adding the nail polish back to my personal cosmetic inventory in no way meant that I wanted to add all of the chemicals back too. I still try to be as healthy as possible in all areas of my life and if I can do that where nail polish is concerned than I’m definitely extending the extra effort!
So, even though I do not prefer the ingredients found in nail polish; I am extremely grateful for the companies who actually try to improve the quality of their products. If you are similar to me and you also prefer nail polish, but wish to reduce the amount of chemicals your body is exposed to then keep reading to learn how you can still use this product in a healthier way. Here’s a tip…you won’t find these types of products in the cosmetic departments of drug stores. I am grateful for online shopping for a number of reasons and one of these happens to be nail polish!
If you prefer nail polish in your beauty regimen, your best first step to improving the quality of this particular cosmetic product is considering the quality of the brand before using.
I stopped making impulsive nail polish purchases based upon my love of the color and actually began considering the quality of the product I was going to be applying to my nails. Choosing healthier products may seem like a total inconvenience for some because these “better quality” products usually translate to “more expensive,” which is never a good thing for anyone’s bank account! However, I can guarantee that your decision to pay a little extra where nail polish is concerned will help to bring you a little peace of mind…it may not be an Organic product, but at least it is healthier for YOU! The better quality brands I recommend below do extend an extra effort to remove the very worst of chemicals from their products and I can’t help but appreciate their generosity.
So what are these fabulous options for healthier nail polish?? I do happen to have three favorites!! Keep reading to find out what they are and where to buy them!
The first is Smith & Cult ($18)…their mascara is fabulous, as well, if you happen to be in the market for a new product…Now, back to business and onto their nail polish!
The biggest draw for me was the product description…Vegan, Gluten-Free, 8-Free Formula: No Dibutyl Phthalate, Toluene, Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin, Camphor, Xylene, Ethyl Tosylamide, and Triphenyl Phosphate.
Despite the remaining chemicals in the product ingredient label, it is very nice to know that these eight ingredients are absent from the nail polish formula. Plus, I can speak from experience when I say that this nail polish is chip-resistant, goes onto the nail just as vibrantly as it appears to be in the bottle, and provides a beautiful, even coating without requiring numerous layers. Smith & Cult nail polish is pretty much all I use these days! Plus they also have Base Coat and Top Coat polishes available on their site that maintain the same ingredient integrity as their other polish products. Vegan, Gluten-Free, and 8-Free! I have provided the Smith & Cult website link above. However, some of their polishes can be found at Neiman Marcus, Blue Mercury, Birchbox, and Amazon as well!
Priti NYC is the next healthier nail polish brand I absolutely love and actually discovered by accident! I was searching for another makeup product whose name happened to be similar to Priti NYC’s and BAM! Next thing I know I’m looking at this nail polish brand who’s products are beautiful and healthier! Priti actually takes it one step further than Smith & Cult by selling a product with a 10-Free formula! Besides being free of the 8 afore mentioned chemicals, this nail polish is also vegan, cruelty free, and gluten free. And it is available in over 80 different shades of polish including Base and Top Coat products as well as a convenient “Speedy Dry Top Coat.”
While I highly recommend Priti NYC’s nail polish, I do not recommend their nail polish remover because it is Soy based. While many people have mistaken Soy for a healthy ingredient thanks to the media, this is actually a very dangerous ingredient that should be avoided in every area of life. I have run into this same problem with the majority of Organic companies, as well. It seems that ingredients found in nail polish remover are often derived from a Soy base so that Organic companies can say their product is “healthier” than the average product.
However, do not be fooled by these companies’ false advertisements. Soy is an ingredient known to worsen inflammation. I can speak from experience when it comes to Soy and my seizure activity. I have never experienced such an increase in my seizure activity except when I am exposed to Soy. The majority of human beings have some amount of inflammation in their bodies and ingredients like Soy will only worsen your inflammation. Additionally, if you have an inflammation induced condition such as arthritis, you will see your health decline with your exposure to such ingredients. It because of my experience with Soy that I decided to go to extremes with my beauty products and actively avoid beauty products claiming to be healthy or organic.
The ingredient Tocopherol or Vitamin E is frequently found in a variety of beauty products…I’m not sure why, there could be an explanation or this could be another useless “filler” ingredient. Anyway, this ingredient can be derived from a variety of products, one of those being Soy.
And guess who frequent Soy based tocopherols the most??? Organic cosmetic companies! So when I went completely Organic where my cosmetic products were concerned, it should be no shock that I experienced an increase in my seizure activity.
To avoid extra seizure activity, I actively searched for such a product that would do the job of removing my nail polish without derailing my daily life. While I had hoped to find a better quality nail polish remover, what I actually discovered was that the average nail polish remover truly is my best option. While sifting through dozens of organic nail polish removers, I realized these products contained ingredients just as comparable to your generic nail polish remover; sometimes worse! Plus, those Organic nail polish removers take 10 times longer to remove the polish, if they remove it at all! In my experience, it felt more like smearing the nail polish around on my nail and skin. I would finish with a bead a sweat on my forehead and an even bigger mess than I started with! Ain’t nobody got time for that!
Yes, somehow these nail polish removers received an “Organic” status, but do not be fooled by this when it comes to the expected abilities of the product. It seems that in the midst of adding all of those poor quality ingredients (including soy); these companies removed the ingredients that are key in removing nail polish too.
So even though my recommended nail polish remover isn’t organic or chemical free, it will do the job successfully and efficiently. AND it is soy free therefore it does not increase my seizure activity; a huge plus for me! My favorite nail polish removers that are tried and true by yours truly include Sally Hansen and Cutex. Not once have these polish removers ever failed to do the job of completely removing the polish from my finger and toe nails, regardless of the polish brand.
Lastly, we have Butter London Nail Polish ($10-$12). I began using this product before I cut nail polish out of my beauty regimen and I am still using it after re-introducing nail polish back in. I LOVE bright colors on my nails so when I discovered Butter, I spent quite the pretty penny due to my indecisiveness. Butter London also offers a wide variety of cuticle treatment polishes such as their “QuickFix Moisturizing Cuticle Balm,” “P.D. Quick Dry Conditioning Drops,” and “Sheer Wisdom Nail Tinted Moisturizer.”
This product has stood the test of time for me and has proven its quality to be more than just another nail polish missing a few extra chemicals in its ingredient label. Butter London has proven to be long lasting and chip resistant product in a variety of brilliant shades.
When it comes to painting your nails, you want the particular shade to shine just as bright on your nails as it does in the bottle. Smith & Cult, Priti NYC, and Butter London will do just that for you! And while these products aren’t completely void of chemicals they are void of Soy and the notorious 8 or 10 chemicals commonly found in nail polish. At this point, I have found that accepting the lesser of two evils is the better decision for those of us using nail polish in our beauty regimens.
Amazon – Cutex: https://www.amazon.com/Cutex-Strengthening-Nail-Polish-Remover/dp/B01BS52AQ2/ref=sr_1_5?crid=L9Q833SP6PAS&keywords=cutex%2Bnail%2Bpolish%2Bremover&qid=1555715890&s=beauty&sprefix=cutex%2Cbeauty%2C198&sr=1-5&th=1
Amazon – Sally Hansen: https://www.amazon.com/Sally-Hansen-Polish-Remover-Strengthening/dp/B000142TU4?th=1
Blue Mercury: https://bluemercury.com/collections/all/brand_smith-cult
Butter London Nail Polish: http://www.butterlondon.com
Ethyl Acetate: https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/ethyl_acetate
Priti NYC Nail Polish: https://www.pritinyc.com
Smith & Cult Nail Polish: https://www.smithandcult.com/collections/color
Tocopherol & Vitamin E: https://www.sciencedaily.com/terms/tocopherol.htm
Yellow 5 Lake, CI 15850: https://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ingredient/701837/D%26C_YELLOW_5_ALUMINUM_LAKE/
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