What Are You Painting On With Your Nail Polish?


While I don't wear nail polish on my fingernails, I love a good pedicure, especially as I do yoga most mornings and end up staring at my toes! However I do not really want to walk around with toxic chemicals hardened to part of my body. And yes, you can absorb them through your nail bed, especially if you are like me and wear nail polish the majority of the time. I must add that while I was pregnant I avoided nail polish altogether and recommend the same to other woman expecting children as the unborn foetus is hypersensitive to everything we expose it to.

The main nasties that you will find in the majority of main stream brands of nail polish are;

  • FORMALDEHYDE; (banned in Japan)a nail hardening ingredient is a known carcinogen, liver and nuero toxic, causes alleges and skin irritant.
  • TOLUENEN; used to keep) the nail polish smooth is found to irritate the skin, kidneys and respiratory system,
  •  DBP (is banned in the EU) is suspected to effect hormone health and can disrupt thyroid and reproductive cycles
  • RESIN; adds the sheen to the polish but can give side effects such as headaches or fatigue.
  • CAMPHOR; (banned in Canada) is a denaturant plasticiser that causes liver and neuro toxicity and should defiantly be avoided in pregnancy.

These chemical are also toxic to the environment, which is where they end up when we remove them from our nails on cotton pads and throw them into landfill, so its better for the whole picture to stay away. As always, I also want to support products that are not tested on animals! (*Note that the popular brand OPI parent company DOES test on animals.)

My favourites are


They are an Australian company committed to supporting local business, using sustainable production methods and being cruelty-free! Plus the colour and quality is amazing!




They are water-based nail polish, "5-free" and vegan.




Made in USA, a great range of colours, vegan and not tested on animals Butter is a better option than main stream ranges but is only "3- Free" as it still contains the chemicals, Camphor and Resin.


Shellac nails are the newest kids on the block. A base coat is cured under a UV lamp, followed by two layers of special-formula nail polish, followed by a top coat. To remove the ultra-resistant gel manicure, one must have the polish soaked in acetone for around 10 minutes before starting over. The result is a "chip-free" polish for up to three weeks.

I strongly suggest sticking clear of these nail treatments as they also contain toxins such as methyl pyrrolidone and Methylmethacrylate (banned in Canada and the EU) and known to cause liver, neuro, immune and reproductive toxicity. No thanks.

Plus the soaking in acetone should really scare you off... just the smell alone tells you instinctively that it is not good for you, and certainly not desirable to be soaking in it!