Hot Summer Looks: Nails


With the warmer weather, it’s time for pretty open-toed shoes and that means, nail polish! 

According to the David Suzuki Foundation 2010 report, 80% of nail polishes contain at least 3 chemicals linked with health and environmental concerns, including cancer, reproductive disorders, asthma and severe allergies.

There are  3 toxic chemicals/main offenders we need to watch out for:

  • DBP (Dibutyl phthalate)  - Used as a solvent for dyes and as a plasticizer to prevent nail polishes from becoming brittle, this phthalate is classified by the EU as a suspected endocrine (horomone) disruptor and as toxic to reproduction. 
  • FORMALDEHYDE – Used as a nail hardener, The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies formaldehyde as a known human carcinogen.
  • TOULENE - According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, toluene is a moderate skin irritant that can cause dermatitis with prolonged contact. It is also a developmental toxicity hazard and has been identified in human milk. 


Below are 5 companies that got rid of these 3 toxic chemicals and now market their brands as '3-Free' so you can feel better about what you are painting on your nails:  

  • BUTTER LONDON (my personal fav). Find it at Whole Foods, Noah’s Health Food Store or 
  • PIGGY PAINT FOR KIDS (Also water-based). Find it at 
  • SCOTCH NATURALS - Scotch Naturals water based nail polish is vegan, gluten free, fragrance free, toxin free, paraben free, hypoallergenic, and biodegradable. They also have a safe and fun Kids line called Hopscotch Kids. Find it at
  • ZOYA – Find it at selelct Wholefoods or at
  • DEBORAH LIPPMAN (also they don't do animal testing). Find it at Sephora or at

BRIT BEET Tip:  If you are thinking of acrylic nails - think twice.  Acrylic nails are popular due to their longevity but they contain Toulene (one of the 3 toxic chemicals we have already identified) and may also contain MMA, a chemical banned by the FDA. Due to a lack of industry regulation however, this chemical could still be used at your local salon. What you need to know is that It can cause respiratory problems, eye and skin irritation and neurological issues.  Worth thinking twice about... probably.