Nail Polish Risk: Harming Unborn Boys

A chemical known to harm the male reproductive system
is found in many nail and cosmetic products. The plasticizer, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), causes birth defects of testicular atrophy, reduced sperm count, and defects in the structure of the penis.

Not just a powerful reproductive toxicant but causing developmental problems as well, DBP was found in every single person tested by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in October, 2000. The findings also showed the disturbing fact that women of childbearing age have 20 times more exposure to DBP than the rest of the population. CDC researchers speculate this is because of their higher use of cosmetics and beauty products. Whatever the cause, pregnant women are exposing their fetuses to DBP in utero.

The Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) powerful new report, “Beauty Secrets: Does A Common Chemical In Nail Polish Pose Risks to Human Health?” by Jane Houlihan and Richard Wiles, names brands of 37 nail products including polishes, enamels, hardeners, and colors, that contain DBP. These include Chanel Nail Colour, Max Factor Diamond Hard Nail Enamel, Maybelline Ultimate Wear, and Oil of Olay Nail Lacquer.

The report also lists products free of DBP and toluene and formaldehyde. Types include LíOreal Paris Jet-Set Quick Dry Nail Enamel, Revlon Nail Enamel, and Kiss Products Kiss Colors.

After finding DBP in so many cosmetic products, the EWG recommends that all pregnant women avoid all personal care products with the word phthalate on the label. To order “Beauty Secrets,” with their full list of toxic and less toxic nail care products, click here


Artificial Nails a Fire Hazard
If after reading this you are thinking of switching to artificial fingernails, beware of open flames! Long artificial fingernails are a fire hazard. In a study at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, 87 percent of the sample nails tested ignited in one second or less. All of the synthetic nails burned completely. Common ways for nails to catch on fire is from open flames such lit birthday candles, lighting cigarettes, and open gas flames on stoves or in chemistry labs.

Adapted from the "Care2 Ask Annie" newsletter.


Christel L.
Christel L6 years ago

WOW GREAT PIECE. I've seen lots of info on this and I like how this article explains it. I'll be sure to share!


Gowri A.
Gowri A.7 years ago

Most popular Nail Polish Brand amongst girls in India?

A) Revlon

B) Lakme

C) Elle

Hi Friends,You can vote and express your views about this poll by clicking following URL Link:
(If the link doesn't work while clicking, please copy the above URL and paste it in your web browser address bar.)

For More Polls Visit :

Your Opinion Matters...........

Arachnae Fae
Arachnae Fae7 years ago

I used to get silk wraps on my natural nails. They were long and always painted. I am a smoker and one day I started my thumb nail on fire and didn't notice right away. Luckily I had a can of soda with me and dunked the nail and put out the fire before I was burned. I was very lucky, I could have been hurt bad.

Bee Hive Lady
Fiona Ogilvie8 years ago

I do not use nail enamels and therefore I do not need nail polish removers. I have a small battery power nail buffer that really makes my nails quite shiny.

Michael Owens
Michael Owens9 years ago

Thanks noted

Sam Torres
Sam Torres9 years ago

There is a company called NailAid that makes products which do not contain any harmful toxins, such as formaldehyde, toluene and dibutyl phthalate. It is very simple to order products from them; simply go to their website at Plus, if you purchase two items, you get free shipping!

Black T.
Blacktiger P9 years ago

Preg-safe? Well commercial polish is a NO NO. After reading all these warnings and how the body absorbs toxins, I would suggest no artificial beauty products either before, during, or after,[if nursing]. Suggestion: after bath or shower, apply vegetable food coloring to nails, then when nails are dry shine them with a little beeswax.

Emily Smith
Emily Smith10 years ago

This is something that has been bothering me lately as I really don't want to go a whole pregnant summer (I'm Down Under) without painting my toenails.... I knew to look for formaldahyde free polishes but they aren't easy to find here (The Body Shop stocks a few colours)...

Any recommendations on preg-safe polishes?