Golly! Your nail polish might be making you fat…

Nail polish. I don’t use it. For the same reasons I avoid conventional beauty products, sun screen and perfume. The stuff is toxic and not necessary. Now, new research claims nail polish can cause weight gain. Good Lord.

Image via coolechicstylefashion.blogspot.com
Image via coolechicstylefashion.blogspot.com

The recent study, conducted by researchers at Duke University and the Environmental Working Groupg (EWG), tested the urine of 26 women who had recently painted their nails. It found traces of Triphenyl Phosphate (TPHP), in every participant.

What’s TPHP?

TPHP is a chemical commonly used to make plastics and fire retardants in foam furniture. In nail polish it’s used to provide flexibility to the product.

TPHP is a chemical known to disrupt hormone function by mucking with our endocrine system, affecting a variety of vital functions, including reproduction.

Plus, it specifically and significantly interacts with a protein which is central to regulating our metabolism and the production of fat cells.

How does it get into your body?

First off, you inhale it as soon as you open the bottle. But the more remarkable finding of the study is that women who directly applied polish to their nails (as opposed to those who wore gloves and applied the polish to synthetic nails) were found to have a seven times higher concentration of TPHP.

Researchers theorised that the network of capillaries in the cuticle surrounding the nail play a role in carrying the toxins into the body.

How does it make us fat?

As with all these studies, I like to flag that correlation is not causation. That said the growing number of studies in this area are seeing more and more experts claiming a link between the toxin and weight gain and obesity.

My take? Why take the risk? It makes sense to stay away from chemicals in beauty products for multiple reasons. I share my thoughts on chemical intolerance if you’d like to explore the topic further. Honestly, no one needs to wear standard toxic nail polish. If you insist on putting coloured stuff on your nail beds, check out my guide to buying low-toxin nail polish or the EWG’s safe(ish) nail polish list.

Will this study change your mind about wearing nail polish?

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