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This is What Happens to Your Body 10 Hours After Putting on Nail Polish

  • Neurotoxin (developmental effects)
  • Endocrine Toxin
  • Reproductive Toxin
  • Skin irritant and allergen

Other Health Threats


Formaldehyde is a well-known carcinogen that can dissolve in water and air (you know that strong nail polish smell?). Exposure to this chemical can also produce symptoms of a scratchy throat, asthma, and difficulty breathing. Those with chronic diseases are especially susceptible to poisoning from formaldehyde.


This chemical is known to impede development in children (and some scientists found traces of it in breast milk!). Additionally, it can be irritating to the skin upon exposure.

Dibutyl Phthalate

Some nail polish brands swap this phthalate for TPHP, but it’s no better for your health. In fact, it poses similar health risks such as hormonal disruption and reproductive system toxins.

Natural Nail Polish Alternatives


Luckily, there are some companies who decided to respond to the discoveries of dangerous nail polish ingredients. There are a handful of awesome, natural alternatives that don’t contain the same risks of allergies, cancer, and hormone disruption.

Here are some of our favorite options that offer a great selection at great prices!

  1. Honeybee Gardens carries a line of natural nail polish in a wide variety of colors. These are actually water-based (so they remove effortlessly with your standard rubbing alcohol) and contain absolutely no traces of dangerous chemicals or carcinogens.
  2. Acquarella has a selection of over 50+ nail polish colors. These are all water-based and don’t contain any formaldehyde, toluene, dibutyl phthalate, mercury, or wheat products.
  3. SpaRitual is a toxin-free brand of nail polish that is also totally vegan!
  4. Peacekeeper Cause-Metics also has a few bright nail polishes that are infused with argan oil, as well as being toxin-free. This one’s a great way to make a classic color keep your nails moisturized.

Your mani-pedi should be a fun way to express yourself, and not a threat to your health, or the health of your growing children. But it’s easy to make the switch to health-conscious nail polish without compromising your wallet OR your sense of style!