So you’re sitting down in front of the TV, ready to give yourself a mani-pedi. You’re surrounded by nail polishes, nail polish remover, cotton and all the nail tools you’ll need. You open the nail polish remover to take off last week’s polish and you’re hit with a waft of noxious fumes. Sound familiar? If your nail polish remover smells that strong, you’re probably damaging your nails!
Why is Nail Polish Remover Bad?
Not all, but A LOT of nail polish removers contain a solvent called acetone. It smells awful, is dangerously flammable and can even dissolve plastic! To top it off, if you leave a remover bottle open long enough, you might experience sudden bouts of laughter and light headedness – yep, you could get high off it.
Now don’t get any ideas! Acetone can seriously harm your body. It can cause respiratory problems and damage to your eyes and nerves. Get this, besides nail polish remover and paint thinner, acetone is used as a cleaning agent in laboratories. If it’s THAT strong, do you really want to expose your nails to it? When you use acetone based remover regularly, it dries the nails. The natural oils and vitamins from your nails and cuticles are stripped away. And your precious nails need those!
What’s the Alternative?
I’ll admit acetone breaks down nail polish super fast and makes the whole manicure/pedicure process quicker, but if you use such nail polish removers regularly – you need to consider a healthier option.
- I swear by this nail polish remover from e.l.f. It’s totally affordable, moisturizes the nails, leaves behind a citrusy smell and there’s no liquids involved!
- Find a water-based, no acetone nail polish remover – they’re not as strong so you’ll definitely have to spend more time with your fingers and toes.
- Most nail polish removers with no acetone in them will have other solvents like ethyl acetate, butyl acetate and alcohol. They are pretty heavy duty and will dissolve your nail polish just fine. So they are a better option than acetone, but still far from the healthiest.
- You could continue to keep using your acetone nail polish remover – but moisturize after every use. A vitamin E infused moisturizer will do your nails and cuticles good. You could also maybe ease up on the nail polish!
The Bottom Line
Okay, so we’ve established that acetone is a big, scary no-no. But what about when that gorgeous glittery, sparkle filled nail polish is on your nails? You KNOW that amazing color isn’t going to come off with some measly water-based nail polish remover. Fancy gel manicures, matte nail polish and acrylic nails – everything that’s fashionable for nails these days requires some heavy duty remover.
So what do you do then?
It’s pretty simple – use an acetone-based nail polish remover. Yeah, it’s bad for you, but as long as you aren’t changing your nail polish every 3 days you’ll probably live. But there are always healthier options available; it just means you’ll have to spend a little more time and energy on your nails to reap the benefits.