Is Your Nail Polish Making You Sick? 5 Harmful Chemicals to Look Out For

Is Your Nail Polish Making You Sick? 5 Harmful Chemicals to Look Out For

One of the major benefits to using Tuesday in Love Water Permeable Nail Polish is that it’s one of the few formulations that is also free of some very harsh chemicals often found in traditional nail polish. Our Non Peelable formula is a 5-Free nail polish that does not contain chemicals such as formaldehyde, toluene, DBP (dibutyl phthalate), camphor or alcohol. But you may be wondering what these chemicals are, and what the health risks associated with them may be? So we collected the data and it may surprise you to find out how harmful some conventional nail polishes can be.



Formaldehyde is found in resins used in the manufacture of composite wood products (i.e., hardwood plywood, particleboard and medium-density fiberboard) as well as building materials and insulation. Many household products such as glues, permanent press fabrics, paints and coatings, lacquers and finishes, and paper products also contain formaldehyde. Preservatives used in some medicines, cosmetics and other consumer products such as dish-washing liquids and fabric softeners also contain formaldehyde. According to the EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency), formaldehyde can cause irritation of the skin, eyes, nose, and throat, and high levels of exposure may cause some types of cancers.

 irritated eye

Is Your Nail Polish Making You Sick? 5 Harmful Chemicals to Look Out For


Toluene is a clear, colorless liquid with a distinctive smell. It is a good solvent (a substance that can dissolve other substances). Toluene occurs naturally in crude oil and in the tolu tree. Toluene is used in making paints, paint thinners, fingernail polish, lacquers, adhesives, and rubber and in some printing and leather tanning processes. It is used in the production of benzene, nylon, plastics, and polyurethane and the synthesis of trinitrotoluene (TNT), benzoic acid, benzoyl chloride, and toluene diisocyanate. It is also added to gasoline along with benzene and xylene to improve octane ratings. A serious health concern is that toluene may have an effect on your nervous system (brain and nerves). Nervous system effects can be temporary, such as headaches, dizziness, or unconsciousness. However, effects such as incoordination, cognitive impairment, and vision and hearing loss may become permanent with repeated exposure, especially at concentrations associated with intentional solvent abuse. High levels of toluene exposure during pregnancy, such as those associated with solvent abuse, may lead to retardation of mental abilities and growth in children. Other health effects of potential concern may include immune, kidney, liver, and reproductive effects. Single exposures to toluene or repeated exposures over a few weeks can cause headaches and sleepiness, and can impair your ability to think clearly. Whether or not toluene does this to you depends on the amount you take in, how long you are exposed, and your genetic susceptibility and age.

 nail polish headache

Is Your Nail Polish Making You Sick? 5 Harmful Chemicals to Look Out For

DBP (Dibutyl Phthalate)

Dibutyl phthalate, or DBP, is used mainly in nail products as a solvent for dyes and as a plasticizer that prevents nail polishes from becoming brittle. Phthalates are also used as fragrance ingredients in many other cosmetics. DBP is absorbed through the skin and it can enhance the capacity of other chemicals to cause genetic mutations, although it has not been shown to be a mutagen itself. In laboratory experiments, it has been shown to cause developmental defects, changes in the testes and prostate, and reduced sperm counts. The European Union classifies DBP as a suspected endocrine disruptor on the basis of evidence that it interferes with hormone function, and as toxic to reproduction on the basis that it may cause harm to the unborn child and impair fertility. Health Canada notes evidence suggesting that exposure to phthalates may cause health effects such as liver and kidney failure in young children when products containing phthalates are sucked or chewed for extended periods. 



Camphor is used to give conventional nail polishes their glossy, shiny appearance and is sometimes used in cold remedies such as vapor rubs and nasal sprays. However, the safety of camphor has recently been called into question as it has been shown to trigger severe skin irritation and allergic reactions when applied topically, and inhaling its fumes can cause nausea, dizziness, and headaches. Observational studies have also linked camphor exposure to organ damage, such as liver dysfunction. Camphor in personal care products is limited to a concentration of 11% in the US, and it is being phased out in markets within the European Union.



Alcohols used in nail polish often serve as drying agents and preservatives. However, the effects of alcohol on your nails can lead to dry and brittle nails over time. Also, the risk of contact with the cuticles of the nailbed may cause irritation and damage to the skin.

 dry nails





Tuesday in Love is a Canadian company specializing in its unique Halal Certified Water Permeable nail polish and Halal certified cosmetics. With our revolutionary micro-pore technology, our nail polish allows water molecules to penetrate through the semi permeable color membrane.





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