An Extension of Our Skin We Must Protect: Our Nails
Hope you had a nice weekend. :) Friday afternoon, after a long but wonderful week, I decided to go out and buy this dark nail polish (pictured here). I painted it on, and felt instantly transformed! Isn’t it so great that us ladies can transform with something so simple as nail polish? I haven’t worn dark polish in ages- usually I trend towards red polish on my toes, and clear tones on my fingers. Why? Hmm…Well I try to keep my keep my feet looking decent because I am barefoot so much in teaching and practicing yoga. I really like classic red, or let them breathe with no polish at all (especially when I’m traveling). In warm months and when I do food demos, I like clear polish on my fingers or nothing because I like that light, clean look and I don’t want my nails to be distracting to people or on TV.
By the way, our nails are a fantastic indicator of our overall health. Which we’ll talk about in another nail blog!
But what girl doesn’t like some dark polish in the cold winter months?? :) Again, like I said- very transformational and very satisfying, that we can just sit in our apt. and instantly (and not permanently- so no big commitment!) change our whole look!
Well this is all safe and good fun except that I want to remind us that our nails are part of our skin. They are very porous, and can absorb chemicals and compounds right into them. That is why acrylic nail add-ons are toxic, hideous inventions that should be banned. That is also why I haven’t stepped foot in a nail salon in years. Unless it is a “green” nail salon, which I hear about sometimes,though haven’t seen one- (has anyone seen one??). I haven’t exactly been seeking them out either though. But in most nail salons, you are almost 100% guaranteed to have to choose from toxic nail polishes. Nooo thanks!!!! I guess I could bring my own polish in there and have them use that- but I don’t bother. Plus I sort of like doing it myself, while watching TV or letting them dry while reading at home. :) Cozy!
Here are the 3 Big Nail Polish Toxins that we should avoid:
1. Toluene: This is a clear liquid also used paints, thinners, and inks. It makes nail polish smooth and makes it dry quicker. So beware of all those “quick dry” polishes!! Toxic to the liver and kidneys, and can cause headaches, dizziness and fatigue.
2. Formaldehyde: A carcinogenic preservative and is used in nail polish as a nail hardener and to keep it from chipping. Also toxic to the organs and can cause immune dysfunction (!).
3. Dibutyl phthalate (DBP): Also found in plastics, personal care products, paints, and pesticides. It’s used as a plasticizer that makes plastics soft and flexible. In nail polish it acts as a binder to make the nail polish last longer. Phthalates are also known carcinogens, are known to cause birth defects, and damage the reproductive organs. Particularly, it has shown to cause underdeveloped genitals in newborn boys and long-term fertility problems. It has also shown to be toxic to the liver, lungs, and kidneys. We can absorb phthalates through skin contact. Note: Many moisturizers and skin care products also contain phthalates!!!! Of course, The Solution, my moisturizer does not. Be sure yours doesn’t either!!
Ladies, this is not a time to cheap out and get crappy drugstore brands if you buy your own polish. Make sure you get polish that is of good quality. Your nails after all, are part of your skin. And if you DO go to nail salons regularly, I recommend bringing your own polish that is free of these Big 3 Toxins.
Some good non-toxic brands are Aquarella, Suncoat, and Honeybee gardens. I think they sell some of these brands at Wholefoods? If you know of more great color/quality/non-toxic organic makeup brands or where they’re sold, please pass that along!