Turns Out You Can, in Fact, Be Allergic to Nail Polish

Updated 05/05/19
hypoallergenic nail polish
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Fun fact: You can be allergic to nail polish. Scary-sounding ingredients like tosylamide-formaldehyde resin, toluene, free formaldehyde, acrylates, and methacrylates are common polish ingredients that can induce a reaction like contact dermatitis. (Not exactly what you're going for when you get a manicure.)

But we're wising up to the harmful ingredients in our beauty products, and the nail polish world has stepped up to the task of creating safer versions that actually work. Now it's not uncommon to find five-, seven-, and nine-free polishes in both drugstores and clean beauty boutiques. To break down what that means, we rounded up our favorite nontoxic nail polish brands—and what potential allergy-inducing ingredients they're free of. 

7 Free Nail Polish Collection
Pacifica 7 Free Nail Polish Collection $9
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The brand: Pacifica

Formulated without: parabens, phthalates, toluene, xylene, camphor, formaldehyde, resin

Jinsoon 'Muse' Nail Lacquer
Jinsoon Muse Nail Lacquer $18
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The brand: Jinsoon 

Formulated without: formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, formaldehyde resin, camphor, xylene, ethyl tosylamide, triphenyl phosphate, parabens, lead

Nailed Lacquer - Ghost Edit
Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer $18
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The brand: Smith & Cult

Formulated without: dibutyl phthalate, toluene, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, camphor, ethyl tosylamide, xylene, triphenyl phosphate

Nail Lacquer
Zoya Nail Lacquer $10
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The brand: Zoya

Formulated without: formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, dibutyl phthalate, and camphor

Tenoverten Nail Polish $18
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The brand: Tenoverten 

Formulated without: dibutyl phthalate, toluene, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, camphor, ethyl tosylamide, xylene, triphenyl phosphate

Gel Lab Pro Nail Polish I'm Too Sexy 0.50 oz/ 15 mL
Deborah Lippmann Gel Lab Pro Nail Polish $20
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The brand: Deborah Lippmann

Formulated without: formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, dibutyl phthalate, camphor, xylene, and diethylhexyl adipate

Context Nail Lacquer $15
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The brand: Context 

Formulated without: formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, DBP, and camphor

Côte Nail Polish $18
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The brand: Côte 

Formulated without: formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, camphor, formaldehyde resin, and triphenyl phosphate 

Patent Shine 10X Nail Lacquer
Butter London Patent Shine 10X Nail Lacquer $18
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The brand: Butter London

Formulated without: formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, DBP, toluene, camphor, ethyl tosylamide, xylene, and TPHP

RMS Beauty Nail Polish $15
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The brand: RMS Beauty 

Formulated without: petrochemicals, parabens, DPB, TPHP, toluene, camphor, xylene, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, and animal products

Next up: Read about our favorite clean beauty products. 

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