Adrienne’s Picks for Her Non-Toxic Nail Salon Kit

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I posted an Instagram story recently about taking my non-toxic nail kit (including healthy nail polish) to the nail salon. I polled those watching to see who else did this. It was only 30 percent of the respondents! Some people will say even going to a nail salon exposes you to tons of germs (and not the good kind!) and chemicals— do they clean everything properly? How do you know?
But a pedicure is a monthly indulgence I hope to never have to give up. I always look forward to it— well, really, the foot massage followed by the neck and shoulder massage.
At WellBe we believe information is power and, like we wrote about in our video and post on sundays studio, the products used in nail salons are often quite toxic, not only for our nails and skin, but also for our lungs via inhalation. We’re not just talking about the nail polish itself— I once counted the number of products used in a 45-minute pedicure and got to seven. Most of them come in nondescript bottles and the lotions are sea green or baby pink…what did they have to add in there to make them that color?! Nail salons have low margins, so I get it— you have to buy the cheapest product in bulk. And as we have sadly begun to realize, inexplicably cheap products are those shown to be most harmful on your long-term health.
So I told myself I could only continue this nail salon habit if I cleaned up my act. The first thing I do is never get my cuticles cut. Reducing the risk of bleeding means reducing the risk of getting a nasty infection that might require an antiseptic or even an antibiotic (I try to avoid taking antibiotics at all costs!).
The second thing was do some research and put together my own “nail salon kit.” The salon near my apartment, Spa Belles, uses a special sterilization device for their tools called an autoclave that uses heat and high pressure to kill bacteria. If you see a salon using a disinfecting solution (the blue stuff at a barber shop) or UV light sterilizer boxes, skip ‘em, because they’re not fully cleaning their tools.
For my kit, I bring everything in a little net bag and explain each item to the pedicurist when I sit down. Have I ever gotten a side eye from a woman next to me over the top of her Vogue or Us Weekly? Sure. Have I ever gotten a staff member who doesn’t quite get it and is annoyed I’m changing up the routine? Sure. The only pushback I’ve heard is on my nail polish remover. Since it’s oil-based, they sometimes think it won’t work as well as the normal stuff (which smells like the inside of a nuclear lab) and worry that it’ll prevent the polish from adhering. When that  happens, I smile and ask them to give the remover a try— it works and the color stays on great.
Now that I’m using my nail kit regularly, most of the other salon regulars don’t even notice; sometimes they look up from their phones when I explain its contents, and some actually look interested in trying them. Most pedicurists just take the products and get started. My current little kit should last a long time before I have to buy fresh products…except maybe some new polish colors every now and then! 😉
Here’s what’s in my non-toxic nail salon kit:          
* Avalon Organics Lavender Hand and Body Lotion, Travel Size
* Priti NYC 2 in 1 Non-Toxic Base Coat
* Priti Nail Polish 701 Speed Dry Topcoat Clear
* Calily Life Organic Tea Tree Foot & Body Scrub with Dead Sea Salt (note that the container is large, so you may want to put it in a travel-size jar for your kit)
* Karma Organic Spa Organic Lavender Nail Polish Remover
* Priti Nail Polish- Ballerina Peony
* Priti Nail Polish- Sheer Pink
Other picks to check out:
* Weleda Skin Food
* JINsoon Strengthening Base Power Coat Nail Lacquer
* JINsoon Gloss Quick Dry Top Nail Coat
* Priti NYC Natural Soy Nail Polish Remover – Unscented
* sundays Nail Polish- Lavender Grey
* Acquarella Nail Polish- Aristo
* Honeybee Gardens Nail Polish- Fairy Dust
Bonus: Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap- Lavender, travel size (Luckily, my nail salon uses Dr. Bronner’s, so I don’t have to bring it along!)
More from WellBe:
Adrienne’s Most Impactful Health Changes
The Nail Salon Looking Out for its Employees’ Health
Why Detoxing and Going on a Juice Cleanse Aren’t the Same
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COMMENTS

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  1. Dear Adrienne,
    Hello Adrienne my name is Kelly Brown, I am the main founder of a product called Sani Sak. I will be drafting up a letter to you in the near future to explain how Sani Sak came about and why I did it. In the mean time I came across your site and very much enjoyed reading your message as much as I wish no one had to worry about sanitary conditions by going to a spa service of any kind. I wanted to thank you for writing such a nice web page for others to read and see. 
    I just wanted to drop you a comment commending you for your desire to clean up the nail salon problem’s. This actually exists GLOBALLY to the extreme since approx. dating back to 2008 ( taken from my research from 2010 to current )
    Per the CDC ( center for disease control ) 1-5 women will catch a contagious disease from a nail salon in their lifetime of going. I started my research in 2010 when I contracted a serious nail infection after going to a high end nail chain in southern California. I lost both thumb nails PERMANENTLY after going ONE TIME to this salon. While doing my research with the help of the CDC being in continuous communication with, the CDC changed their wording on their national website from a problem in the USA to a GLOBAL EPIDEMIC. Much worse in other countries due to the costs it takes to use the proper material and supplies needed for proper sanitation requirements, and than some countries have no requirements at all. That’s when it got very real for me. Yet I knew I could not change my own heartbreaking outcome of deformity and extreme pain I was able to finally come up with a product (band aid per say) as such, until I could actually get something done with the proper  government authorities to not only make the industry regulated but also make sure every salon used an autoclave or the proper protocol for sanitation that must be met for safety to each client using a service.  The legal stuff in our government takes time, time women and men that go to nail salons just don’t want to wait patiently. Although, Sani Sak is not the end of the road, its a “band aid” per say,  to keep other salon goers as safe as possible. The key to this is to never ever share any tools or supplies with anyone else. It only takes ONCE. We were brought up to learn from kindergarten or earlier to always share with others, although I must imply this is the one time that sharing is NOT caring by any means. In fact it is the most dangerous thing you can do. I can only wish someone had warned me of this growing epidemic. This is why I created Sani Sak. You can see it on you tube, “Sanisak the cure in manicure” or just search using “Sanisak” FB/ instagram. ( We are currently making changes on the sanisak website so it may be down at the moment.
    Well, I wanted to thank you for writing up your site and trying to warn people too. It is nice to see other people as yourself taking precautions. I will leave you with my favourite saying i came up with when I was sitting at a nail salon. “The one thing you never see on any nail salon cost service menu, how much they charge for a contagious skin disease”? Thank you for taking the time to read this. You are awsome ! Please keep sending a message out to others of the risks they take by going to a salon that is not protecting them. Stay safe ! Peace out those nail nasties. !!

    1. Wow Kelly I’m so sorry to hear what happened to you! Yes you must protect yourself from both harsh nail chemicals and deadly infections that require antibiotics! Thanks for your kind words re WellBe and my mission. xx Adrienne

  2. Non toxic nail polish are harmless for the nails. People are also using nail polish remover which is quite harmful for nails. The best remedy is lemon and vinegar solution.

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