Ignore any marketing fluff around nail polish that says natural or any variant on that word. There is no such thing as natural or organic polish as they are all made from chemicals and various dyes. That said there’s a growing number of brands that are free of three ingredients that are thought to pose serious health risks (especially for nail techs or those who regularly wear polish). Those three are: dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, and formaldehyde. Better yet it’s not only the ones that are labeling themselves as non-toxic – even Chanel and essie are three-free now. With that in mind I have to be honest I never paid too much attention to what was or what was not in my polish until I went to Tenoverten for a manicure and my polish was totally chipped in three days. They were kind enough to give me a free polish change and recommended I go with a one of the shades from the vegan line RGB. I am now a convert! Not that I’m giving up my Chanel anytime soon or that I’ll say no to essie if I’m loving the color, but if I’m going on a trip or know I’ll be too busy to touch up my nails as often as I usually do, I am going with polishes that go a step above three-free – my RGB manicure lasted a good week.
Another great brand I recently found out about – though I still haven’t tried – is Scotch Naturals. They’re water-based and free of the big three as well as free of ethyl acetate, butyl acetate, nitrocellulose, acetone and heavy metals. The big problem with these “clean” lines was, for a long time, the color selection, but things are clearly ramping up for the better. Like with going organic food I have a hard time doing it all the way, but baby steps. I just bought a bottle of RGB! I will add though that our nails are all different and some polishes last longer on some people than others, but especially if you are a nail biter it’s worth the while to look into non-toxic polishes, whether or not they last longer than the more mainstream brands.