How is Nail Polish Made and Who Invented It?

Women love to end their stressful week pampering themselves by going to a salon for hair makeover or treatment, getting a body massage, or having a manicure or pedicure. Body relaxation from a massage is usually complemented with foot spa and, of course, nail pampering.

There are a few nail polish types based on their appearance when used, formulation, and their ability to last on nails. But whether what type you prefer using, nail polish has its way in beautifying our nails and making them extra artsy sometimes.

To know which type of nail polish you want to see on your nails next time, here are the most common choices.

1. Creme

Creme nail paint is the most basic and standard nail polish formula that has a little shine and comes in different colors.

2. Gel

Although this has some similarities with creme nail paint, gel nail polish lasts longer, is chip-resistant, and quite expensive. Previously, this was only applied if the finished look involved processing the color under a U.V. lamp. Today, this can be used at home and get similar-looking results. Its name is used to describe the hard U.V. gel that bonds and sets under a U.V. lamp.

3. Metallic

With its final look appearing “metallic,” so its name suggests. This doesn’t have a glittery spark but has a specific luster, which can be seen in metals like silver, gold, and bronze.

4. Pearl

During the 90s and early aughts, this nail polish got a huge range. With its fine pearlescent particles give the polish a uniquely delicate sheen. This usually has paler colors like a shell, and white pearl is the most common in this.

5. Chrome

What makes this type of nail polish unique from the others is its mirror-like reflection characteristic, which is achieved with a chrome powder, a sponge applicator, and a nail lamp, in addition to regular nail polish and a clear topcoat.

6. Glitter

This nail polish has visible glitters that come in different shapes like tiny stars, circles, or square suspended in clear polish. This is applied over a solid color and maybe layered many times for another effect. Some glitters are bigger, and some are minute sparkles that are more concentrated.

7. Matte

This is a totally shine-free nail polish but is colored. Choose unique pastel shades when buying matte nail paint, because matte in colors true red, magenta pink, or electric blue often end up looking like you filled your nails in with sketch-pens.

How is nail polish made?

Since there are several types of nail polish, there are also different formulations; generally, they all have the same fundamental components.

1. Solvents

Solvents make possible the mixing of the different components of nail polish to yield a uniform product. This is usually the first ingredient. When you apply the nail polish, solvents evaporate away. The type and amount of solvent in a nail polish affect the thickness and the drying period of nail polish. Solvents mostly used are ethyl acetate, butyl acetate, and alcohol.

2. Film Formers

Film formers form the smooth surface on a coat of nail polish. Nitrocellulose is the most common film former.

3. Resins

The nail polish film adheres to the nail bed because of the resins. Resins are the substance that adds gloss, depth, and hardness to the film of nail polish. A tosylamide-formaldehyde resin is an example of a polymer used as a resin in nail polish.

4. Plasticizers

Resins and film formers give polish strength and gloss but produce a brittle lacquer. On the other hand, plasticizers help keep polish flexible and reduce the chance of cracking or chipping. This is done by linking to polymer chains and increasing the distance between them. Camphor is a common plasticizer.

5. Pigments

Nail polish would be dull without pigments. These are chemicals that add color to your nail polish. There are organic and artificial pigments. One commonly used is iron oxides.

6. Additional Ingredients

Some nail polish has glitters and other thickening agents, such as stearalkonium hectorite, to keep the other ingredients from separating and to make the polish easier to apply. Some have ultraviolet filters like benzophenone-1 to prevent discoloration when the polish is exposed to sunlight or other ultraviolet light forms.

When did people use nail polish, and who have discovered it?

This fad of beautifying fingernails have existed about 5000 B.C. as women in India used henna to decorate their fingertips. Not only do women wear manicures because, in 4000 B.C., Babylonian men also wore black or green kohl manicures. With the use of egg white, vegetable dyes, and beeswax, the Chinese also created nail stains as early as 3000 B.C.

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