Natural Nail Polish Smack Down

April 6, 2016


In an effort to clean up my beauty routine, I decided to target what might be the worst offending category – nail polish. Seriously, guys, I don’t even want to know what’s in most conventional nail polish. As Ainsley’s gotten older and I’ve thought about painting her nails I just didn’t have a lot of peace about using regular nail polish on her little nails. So, I asked for recommendations of your favorite natural brands, ordered them all on my own dime and started testing them for a month in order to take the guess work out for you. It’s a tough job, friends, but someone has to do it! 😉

The Best of the Best //
1. Smith and Cult in Kundalini Hustle $18
I can’t even believe that I paid this much for a nail polish, but once I applied it and wore it day in and day out without chipping, I was sold. You guys, this stuff is pure gold. It’s 5-free but wears better than any conventional nail polish that I’ve used. It goes on flawlessly and I think you could get away with a single coat if you wanted.

2. Butter London $15 
I wasn’t crazy about the shade that I purchased, so I wouldn’t recommend that specific color, but the polish was lovely. It went on well, dried reasonably quickly and two coats was sufficient coverage for what I was trying to achieve. The formulas are 8-free, too!

Middle of the Road //
1. Zoya $10
This polish was the closet to my typical Essie nail polish that I’m used to using. It performed well and covered nicely. I didn’t love either of the colors that I picked, but that’s more my personal preference and less of a knock on the brand itself. I loved the price point, too, which was much more on par with what I’m used to spending on polish.

2. Ten Over Ten $18
The polish colors offered by Ten Over Ten are some of the best! They have a great variety and the polish applied nicely/wore well. I put it in the middle category because I loved the Smith and Cult better for this price point, but this is still a great option if you’re looking for a wide variety of colors.

Pass on These // 
1. SpaRitual $12
These polishes are vegan and 5-free, which is what attracted me in the first place. I will say that I loved the color going on. It was a little thin in consistency, but two coats provided nice coverage and it dried quickly, which I love, but it wore terribly. The nail polish chipped within a day, and within a couple days it looked pretty awful. I’m a big believer that safe beauty also needs to work well, and this didn’t pass the test.

2. Ella + Mila “Mommy” Line $10.50
I have the same complaint about this polish as the one prior: the wear was horrible! I really wanted to love the brand because they have great colors, great branding and a really nice list of ingredients they don’t contain, but once again after just a couple days of wear it was very chipped and didn’t hold up well to every day life. I will be giving their kiddo line a try in the future to see if it works better for Ainsley.


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  • Reply Rachelle April 6, 2016 at 9:14 pm

    I’ve been trying to clean up my beauty products too, so thank you for this post! Did you try any base or top coats, or do any of these brands offer them? I think my Seche Vite might be the hardest thing to get rid of…

  • Reply DessertForTwo April 7, 2016 at 7:50 pm

    I love when you do natural beauty posts! I just picked up Mineral Fusion nail polish last week from Whole Foods, and I’m loving it so far. It’s pretty thin, but it hasn’t chipped yet!

  • Reply Megan O'Mera April 9, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    Catching up on my favorite blogs 🙂 I LOVE butter london although I stink at doing my own nails…give their “sheer wisdom” tinted moisturizer a whirl…even I can handle it

  • Reply Julie Johnson April 11, 2016 at 2:47 pm

    This was so interesting. Do you use natural deodorant? If so, which one is your favorite, and does it also help with perspiration?

    • Reply Madison Mayberry April 11, 2016 at 4:34 pm

      Hi Julie! I’ve been using LaVanilla natural deodorant but I’m not crazy about how it works. I’m still on the search for one, but perhaps that should be my next comparison/roundup! 🙂

  • Reply Inisha Hoehamer April 13, 2016 at 1:05 am

    This post was so helpful! My little girl loves to have nail polish nights (our goal is 1 every couple weeks), & this is so great to know. Thanks for doing all the hard work 🙂

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