Friday, June 24, 2011

The Price We Pay for Pretty Toes

This post is for the women out there who love having painted toes, especially in the summer when we can actually see them! I include myself here because my toes are painted the entire summer (most of the year, in fact, because I’m reminded of them everyday in yoga class).

Over the years, I’ve slowly replaced personal care products containing harmful chemicals with safer and more environmentally friendly brands, however I’ve been slow to do this with nail polish. One reason has been because the spa where I go for pedicures doesn’t use safer brands. I guess I’ve picked my poison, so to speak when it came to my toes.

It’s a pretty potent poison, too, since many polishes can contain ingredients like formaldehyde, toluene, ketones, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), polyurethanes, parabens, camphor, and more…

A quick scan through the Environmental Working Group’s list of nail polishes had three brands at the top of the “on the safer side” list. The first is Acquarella, which classified as “fair”, Keeki, which had limited data but its health concern is low. Keeki appears to be a children’s polish. And Honeybee Gardens which was given a fair rating as well. Further down the list, the information was limited on some of the more popular brands or toxic chemicals, like organic solvents were in the products.

After deciding that I am in fact going to stop wearing toxic polishes, I searched for additional brands, and I decided to try Go Natural. It’s formulated with only a few ingredients (water, a latex emulsion resin, and non-toxic colorants), it’s almost odor free (can even use it on a plane!) and it claims to be chip resistant and long lasting. The one caveat is that it takes longer to harden than traditional, solvent-based laquers. I will be testing all of this myself : ) If I’m not happy with the results, I will move on to a new brand.

The things we do to look pretty… ; )


  1. What about Zoya nail polish? It's advertised ok for even pregnant women. I've tried it and it's a nice polish and thought it was safe to use.


  2. Hi Rosemary,

    Yes! Zoya was my next choice. They actually have more colors to choose from. I chose Go Natural because it sounded like it was slightly less toxic. What color(s) did you try?