What Happens When You Eat Nail Polish?

First off, let's start by stating that we absolutely do not condone ingesting nail polish of any kind. Our goal is to help you look and feel beautiful. We want to avoid any harm that could occur by ingesting our product.

Nail polish is a great accessory to wear. But unfortunately, nail-biting is a common action that leads to a lot of people actually ingesting their nail polish. 

So, what happens when you consume nail polish? Is it bad for you? Can you die from it? Does it make any difference at all? 

In this article, we will be discussing all of those questions for you, and going a bit more in-depth about the toxicity of nail polish.

What This Article Covers:

What Happens When You Eat Nail Polish?

It’s no secret that habits, good or bad, are hard to break. If you find yourself asking “Why do I bite my nails?”, yet are unable to stop, you are not alone. 

 What may seem like an innocent habit, can actually lead to a lot more. If you bite your nails when you have nail polish on, it can be very dangerous. 

The ingredients in nail polish consist largely of chemicals, and when you bite your nails with nail polish on, you are openly inviting the chemicals to enter your body. 

Unfortunately, this is not all. When you eat nail polish like this, you are also eating plastic. 

There are certain companies, like Orly, that are trying to go more natural with their ingredients and include fewer chemicals in their nail polish. Unfortunately, even this doesn’t make the nail polish completely free from plastic particles. 

The toxic ingredients in nail polish, which we will discuss in detail shortly, aren’t the only worry, but the colorants in plastic are something to be wary of too.

Certain colorants that are used in nail polish aren't allowed to be used in lip products because they are unsafe to ingest. So, when we end up eating nail polish containing these colorants, it can be very concerning. 

When you eat nail polish, depending on how frequently and how much you ingest, it can lead to toxicity, damage to your immune system, disrupting the balance of your gut, damage of your digestive tract, and irritation to your stomach and intestines.

What Makes Nail Polish So Toxic?

There is no doubt that nail polish is toxic. Some definitely more than others, but all nail polish contains some form of chemicals and toxic substances, which is what makes it so bad to eat, and is exactly why you shouldn’t bite your nails

what happens if you eat nail polish

All chemicals are obviously not good, but there are 3 in particular that you want to try and avoid. These chemicals are known as “The Toxic Three”, are consist of formaldehyde, toluene, and dibutyl phthalate (DBP). 

These aren't the only chemicals in nail polish, but they are the three that are the most toxic, and that you want to try to stay away from the most. 

If you can, try your hardest to make sure that the nail polish you buy does not contain the Toxic Three, such as all of the products we sell at Orly.

Do You Get Completely Non-Toxic Nail Polish?

Unfortunately, it is impossible to get a nail polish that is completely free from chemicals, but you can get a nail polish that has a lot less harmful chemicals and toxins than nail polish originally did when it started out.

These nail polishes will be referred to as 3-free, 4-free, 5-free, 6-free, 7-free, 10-free, and 12-free. 

The higher the number used as a prefix, the more chemicals that nail polish is free from, and the better it is for you. 

Here at Orly, all of our nail polish is 12-free, which makes our products some of the safest, and least toxic, nail polishes around. 

Nonetheless, they still do contain chemicals in them, and we highly advise that you don’t ingest them.  

Reasons Why You Should Get Non-Toxic Nail Polish

There are so many reasons for this, and it is most definitely worth investing in nail polish that is non-toxic and contains as few chemicals in them as possible. 

Nail polish that contains harmful chemicals, especially the toxic three, may result in high amounts of nail damage, can cause toxicity if eaten or ingested, can also lead to fertility problems and even cancer, in extreme cases

what would happen when you eat nail polish

Even if a nail polish is 3-free, or 4-free, it can still contain other chemicals and heavy metals that can lead to skin allergies, liver damage, or nausea. 

For this reason, it is highly recommended to go for a nail polish that is 12-free so that you can protect yourself from the harsh consequences of nail polish chemicals as much as possible. 

Can The Toxins In Nail Polish Kill You? 

There may be a few people who are worried after hearing what nail polish can do to you, and you may be wondering “Can nail polish kill you?”

It is very unlikely that it can. Only if you ingest huge amounts, similar to a bottle or two of it and not just ingest it from biting your nails. 

Eating it off your nails is obviously not good or recommended, but it will most likely only make you ill or upset your stomach, it is very unlikely that it would kill you.

Even wearing it frequently is very unlikely to lead to death. But this is why you want to opt for 12-free nail polish to keep these risks as minimal as possible. 

Ways To Stop Biting Your Nails

If you are struggling to stop biting your nails, and are worried that you are ingesting too much nail polish, here are a few ways how to stop.

Gel Polish Manicure

Try getting a gel manicure done, and not just wearing normal polish. Gel polish is harder to bite and ingest. The polish itself is very hard and difficult to remove, which makes biting your nails difficult and unpleasant.

Anti-Biting Polish

Ways To Stop Biting Your Nails

The benefits of nail polish such as our No Bite Polish is that it is extremely bitter and makes you not want to put your nails anywhere near your mouth. 

Using this treatment will hopefully be enough to help you kick the habit.

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