How Does Acetone Nail Polish Hurt Your Nails?

How Does Acetone Affect the Nails? Discover the acetone health risks that come with using the product.

Acetone is very effective at removing polishes; hence it is a common ingredient in nail polish removers. It is also commonly used for removing artificial nails. However, despite its popularity and widespread use, there are numerous negative reviews about this chemical on nails and skin. So, how safe is acetone, and is it exactly bad for your nails? Read on to learn how acetone nail polish may hurt your nails.

What is Acetone?

Acetone is widely used in the industry, especially as a paint thinner, and in household cleaning and cosmetic products because of its ability to dissolve substances. It also effectively removes nail polish, paint, or glue; thus, it is an active ingredient in nail polish removers. The body also produces a small amount of acetone during metabolism.

What is Acetone

How Does Acetone Affect the Nails?

Using acetone to remove acrylic nail extensions is quite common in nail salons. It is also common for manicurists to soak your nails in acetone to remove a gel manicure. However, soaking your nails in this powerful solvent for extended periods is not ideal, as it may irritate your skin.
Also, acetone is a harsh substance and removes the natural oil from your skin, breaking down the protective lipid area.

This prevents the skin from holding moisture, causing it to become brittle and dry. Acetone also dehydrates the nails and cuticles, leading to extensive dryness. It results in nail discoloration, rashes, dry skin, and cracked nails in some people. So, if you notice excessive dryness after your manicure, it may be time to reduce the use of acetone. It is also advisable to avoid using the substance if you have dry and splitting nails.

Acetone has a strong smell that irritates some people, and the fumes have been linked to causing sore throats and headaches. Though this may not be an adverse health effect, getting these whenever you get your nails done would be unpleasant.

Acetone Health Risks

Health Risks of Acetone

This substance can get into the body through the skin, nose, and mouth; the effect it causes depends on how much that enters the body. If the skin is exposed to only a small quantity, it is filtered out naturally by the liver. However, if the exposure is high, it could cause the following symptoms:

• Severe cough
• Lightheadedness
• Loss of consciousness (in severe cases)
• Sore throat
• Nausea and vomiting
• Disorientation
• Irritation of the nose and throat

Alternatives to Acetone Nail Polish

Acetone-based nail removers are the most effective, but some acetone-free products also get the job done, though with a little more effort. There are many cruelty-free, natural, and healthy alternatives that you can easily find at the drugstore; they provide oils and minerals to your nails. But these products take more time to remove nail polish and require more cotton balls.

It is also important to note that some products boast of being organic or natural but still contain certain solvents. Therefore, ensure to choose your products carefully and check the label to confirm it is free from harmful chemicals.

How Does Acetone Nail Polish Hurt Your Nails

How to Prevent the Effects of Acetone

If you still want to stick to the remover you are used to, there are ways you can mitigate some of the acetone’s effects. First, try to limit exposure to acetone by not soaking your nails in it; rather, use a cotton ball and wipe it off as soon as you can. Then, wash your hands and moisturize to prevent any form of dryness.

Bottom Line

Acetone is the most effective product for removing artificial nails and nail polish. Still, it is advisable only to use sparingly to prevent any side effects.

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