Health & Grooming | The Reconnoisseur

The nail polish brand that banished chemical nasties

How a nail-polish naysayer was won over

The nail polish brand that banished chemical nasties

September 25 2010
Jenny Dalton

I’ve always had issues with nail polish. Being brought up by a feminist, no-nonsense mother who viewed the stuff as a silly waste of time has made me view nail painting with suspicion. Then of course there’s the smell that means everyone living within 100 paces of you knows you are beautifying. Lastly, with an asthmatic son in the house I’ve attempted to limit toxic inhalants. Needless to say, for many years I’ve been a polish-free zone.

Then I discovered Butter London via a hotel manicure. Originally launched by Sasha Muir and the then London-based US nail technician Nonie Creme, Butter London has banished three particularly nasty chemicals from its polishes: formaldehyde, DBP (Dibutyl Phthalate) and toluene (Google the latter and you may never want to use standard polish again). As for the colours – they’re experimental and interesting and not too “lady” (although of course “lady” is where it’s at this season), so they don’t make me feel silly. And crucially, as with all cosmetics, the packaging is substantial but cute.

If this season’s colours – including a holographic beige homage to Alexander McQueen – are perhaps a bit too outré, one of Butter London’s bestsellers, and my own personal favourite, is a very wearable and pretty medium beige, called Yummy Mummy. Safe, but not too safe.

See also

Nailcare, Make Up