Cry Yourself a River with Red Nails

Do you have red, irritated, swollen or crying eyes? And the pills you take for pollen allergy do not help? And do you use nail polish every now and then? Say hello to allergy caused by your nail polish.

More often than not nail polish contains quite harsh chemicals. But that these chemicals can give you and your children a lifelong allergy might come as a surprise to you.

Especially because the nail polish allergy symptoms are often misinterpreted with allergy to pollen. The symptoms are almost the same: red, irritated, swollen and crying eyes. Studies show that people often have an allergy to nail polish for years before they find out what is causing it.

When you look at the chemicals used in nail polish it is no wonder why some of you get allergic reactions. Nail polish usually contains chemicals such as formaldehyde, toluene and colophony. And since both formaldehyde and toluene are airborne they have an ability to expose both respiratory tract and eyes. Besides being very allergenic formaldehyde has shown carcinogenic abilities. And toluene is no better; used as solvent it can be as toxic as it smells. Both toluene and formaldehyde are harsh solvents and in high concentrations they can damage the nervous system and cause the painter syndrome. So if you ask me these chemicals should not be allowed in any cosmetics at all.

That is also why I was so happy to see By-K, a small Danish producer of nail polish, being able to make nail polish without these harsh chemicals.

Instead of using toluene By-K uses an alcohol, and the alcohol used is the same that is often used in hand disinfection. Only difference is there is almost 10 times less alcohol in nail polish than in hand disinfection. Alcohol do have a bad smell but it evaporates relatively quickly and it is not bad for your health in these low concentrations and the low time of exposure.

The colors used in the nail polish are all approved for food by the FDA (US Food and Drug Administration). This is relevant since studies show that we are often exposed to chemicals in nail polish through our mouth because we have a very bad habit of putting our fingers (with the nail polish) in to our mouth and sometimes mothers even put their own fingers in to their babies mouths to calm down the baby.

AllergyCertified has made an allergy risk assessment on By-K nail polish. Every ingredient has been assessed as to the exposure and the used concentration. And since we do know that children love nail polish we made the assessment based on worst case, meaning that the calculation was made for a child which weighs 20 kg instead of the usually 60 kg. And the assessment came out safe for both children and adults.

So if you are allergic or maybe want to prevent being allergic – dry your red and swollen eyes and start using nail polish without all the harsh chemicals.