It is fun to play with colors. You can do that with your clothes, hair, make-up and nails. Nail polishes all over the world come from colorless to different colors of all shades that you can actually choose from. There is also what most would call “nail art” in which different designs, pictures and colors are painted in to their finger nails and toe nails depending on whatever design you can actually think of. It is not just done recently because ancient records showed that nail colors were also used in defining a person social rank in Egypt. Modern nail polishes are now used all over the world that women are well aware of. But how safe are your nail polish?
Nail polish is a type of lacquer used to decorate fingernails and toenails. Because it has to be strong, flexible, and resist chipping and peeling, it contains a number of chemicals. A basic clear nail polish could be made from nitrocellulose dissolved in butyl acetate or ethyl acetate. The nitrocellulose forms a shiny film as the acetate solvent evaporates. However, most polishes contain an extensive list of ingredients.
- Solvent are normally the first ingredients of nail polish. Examples of solvents include ethyl acetate, butyl acetate and alcohol. Toluene, xylene and formalin or formaldehyde are toxic chemicals that used to be common in nail polish but are found rarely now or in low concentrations. The amount and type of solvent determines how thick a polish is and how long it takes to dry.
- Film formers are chemicals that form the smooth surface on a coat of nail polish. The most common film former is nitrocellulose.
- Resins make the film adhere to the nail bed. Resins are ingredients that add depth, gloss and hardness to the film of a nail polish.
- Plasticizers are chemicals that help keep polish flexible and reduce the chance that it will crack or chip. They do this by linking to polymer chains and increasing the distance between them. Camphor is a common plasticizer.
- Pearls give the glittering or shimmering effect on some nail polish. These are pearlescent minerals such as titanium dioxide or ground mica. Some polishes may contain bits of plastic glitter or other additives that produce a special effect.
- Pigments are chemicals that add color to nail polish. An astonishing variety of chemicals may be used as pigments in nail polish. Common pigments include iron oxides and other colorants, such as you would find in paint or varnish.
- Nail polishes may contain thickening agents, such as stearalkonium hectorite, to keep the other ingredients from separating and to make the polish easier to apply. Some polishes contain ultraviolet filters, such as benozophenone-1, which help prevent discoloration when the polish is exposed to sunlight or other forms of ultraviolet light.
Eventually, these are chemicals that when are regularly used can affect your the condition of your nails. Too much apply of nail polish can lead to thinning of nails and decrease in its durability. It can weaken your nails and make it incapable to serve its purpose. A good nail polish can last a long time but it would be safer to have nail polish on only for as much as two weeks. After that, it is time to clean off the polish. At the same time, have at least 2 weeks rest for your nails without applying any nail polishes to allow it to regenerate itself. With that, you can still enjoy playing with your nails while keeping them healthy.