Nails tend to be an essential part of women women’s beauty routines. – and I have some tips on making your routine less toxic for you, your pockets, and the planet, all without having to leave your home. Today’s article is all about your nails. At the time that I’m writing this, we are in the middle of a global health crisis that has caused millions of women around the world to stay at home, which means no visits to the nail salon. But not to worry. My eco-friendly nail care tips can help you keep your nails looking beautiful from the comfort of your home. Last summer, I completely changed my nail care routine when I found out.
1. Most nail polish is not vegan
2. A lot of nail polish is packed with toxic chemicals, and
3. Traditional nail salons tend to produce a lot of waste,
something I’ve been actively trying to cut back on. So Here are three sustainable steps you can take to do your nails at home that are less toxic to your health. Save you money, are better for the environment, and don’t harm animals – and I even found a brand of nail polish that lasts two weeks. Let’s Let’s begin.
Step 1: Remove your nail polish with reusable bamboo cotton rounds. Single-use cotton products are wasteful. Between using cotton balls to wipe off nail polish and disposable cotton rounds to clean our faces, many pieces of cotton end up in the trash.
On top of that, it takes 20,000 liters of water to produce one 1 kilogram of cotton, which is essentially a t-shirt. Switching to a reusable option cuts down on water waste, means less cotton in landfills, and saves you from having to spend money on disposable beauty products that you have to replenish when you run out. I bought a 20-pack of organic reusable bamboo cotton rounds with a tiny laundry bag for washing. I use these to remove polish, makeup, wipe my cell phone done with alcohol. If you use toner, you can use it for that too. I’m sure there are a ton of ways these can come in handy in your life.
Step 2: Remove your polish with natural polish remover. So let’s talk about toxins. I mentioned earlier that there are harmful chemicals in polish – but the same also goes for polish remover. Just think about that smell that fills your nostrils the moment you twist the lid off that remover. It smells toxic. Plus, polish remover usually comes in a disposable plastic bottle. Luckily there are more natural and zero waste ways to remove polish. It can be tricky to find one that that’s low-cost and effective, but you have options. The one I use is natural and soy-based with lavender essential oil. It’s vegan, cruelty-free, and acetone-free. It comes in a glass bottle, and they use soy-based ink. So no plastic means less harm to our planet.
Step 3: Paint Your Nails with Non-Toxic, Vegan Nail Polish. Traditional nail polish is problematic for our bodies and the earth because of the harmful toxins and animal-derived ingredients. When I first found out nail polish isn’t vegan, I was perplexed! But it’s true. Some of these strange ingredients include crushed beetles, fish scales, and animal fat. Which then sent me down a rabbit hole of research. I also learned that the chemicals I was exposing myself to could harm our skin, immune systems, and hormonal development. WHY THO? My first reaction was to go to the beauty store and find some non-toxic vegan nail polish. Sephora only had one brand – Pacifica – that met that criteria. So I bought two colors, a base coat, and a topcoat. To be cleaner, nail polish companies started using 3-free, 5-free, 7-free, 9-free, and 13-free to indicate they are free of certain chemicals.
Pacifica is one of those brands. It is labeled as 7-free, meaning it is formulated without toxins: parabens, formaldehyde, resin, toluene, phthalates, xylene, and camphor. They have many pretty colors, and I love that it’s vegan, but it starts to chip after a few days. So I wondered if choosing sustainable nail care did mean I had to forego gel and powder nail finishes? Thankfully no! My aunt sent me a link to a brand that seemed too good to be true. It was vegan, non-toxic, and promised to last as long as gel polish. I was skeptical, so I ordered one of their mini kits to try it without committing to the larger quantities. Like gel polish, it requires a few steps to work. It comes with nail prep, a base coat, polish, and a topcoat.
The first step is to prep your nails by saturating reusable cotton round and scrubbing each nail to clean it. Then you apply two coats of the base coat followed by two coats of the nail color and the topcoat. The exact instructions are on the box. The color lasted me about a week and a half before I experienced my first chip. So yes, non-toxic, vegan polish exists, and even more exciting, there’s one on the market that can even compete with gel polish.
So that’s it! That’s my 3-step process for non-toxic, vegan, and cruelty-free nail care you can do without leaving your home. Whether you’re reading this during the quarantine or sometime in the future when it’s, it’s safe to venture out into the world. I hope you’ll still consider these options no matter what. Because as always, every little step you take living a more conscious, sustainable life helps us have healthier bodies, healthier homes, and a healthier planet. If you learned something in this article or liked it, give it a thumbs up for more sustainable lifestyle tips. Until next time, stay safe out there all you, and keep on living an adventurously green life.