5 Worst Nail Polish Brands to Avoid in 2024 + Alternatives

Worst Nail Polish Brands

Those shiny, vibrant colors make your nails look beautiful. But have you ever thought the chemicals you inhale could cause chronic diseases?

Although numerous brands claim they aren’t using any harmful substances in their products, are they?” They also state that their product is better than others, but are they really worth the hype?

Based on consumer feedback, our team has compiled a list of the worst nail polish brands that don’t deserve your hard-earned cash. Some of them streak while others take hours to dry and chip the same day.

Consider a few things when you shop for nail paints, such as the ingredients. Once you know that the ingredients are not harmful, only then add them to your cart.

But what are the ingredients that you should be avoiding, like a plaque? Well, don’t worry, here is the list.

How are Nail polishes Toxic?

Various brands are claiming that they are selling non-toxic nail polishes. You might see the terms like “3-free, 6-free, 7-free,” but what does it mean?

Well, they try to convince us that their products are free from specific harmful chemicals such as formaldehyde.

  • 3-Free: Formaldehyde, Toluene, and Dibutyl Phthalate (DnBP).
  • 5-Free: Camphor, Formaldehyde, Toluene, and Dibutyl Phthalate Formaldehyde Resin.
  • 7-Free: Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Toluene, Formaldehyde, xylene, Camphor, Formaldehyde Resin, and Ethyl Tosylamide.

Numerous companies are using these harmful chemicals but claim that they don’t.

Let’s discuss some of the worst nail polish brands that gave harmful chemicals in their products, which brands include toxic chemicals in their products, and why you should avoid them.

List of Worst Nail Polish Brands to Avoid:

Nail Polish Brands to Avoid

As per our team’s research, OPI, Essie, Sally Hansen, Maybelline, and Revlon are the worst nail polish brands you should avoid buying because of toxic chemicals, overpricing, and not being long-lasting.

Let’s discuss why you should avoid adding these brands to your collection.

1. OPI:

OPI comes first on our worst nail polish brands list. Although it is a reputable brand in many countries, some of its ingredients might concern you, especially if you’re trying to lose weight or have other health issues.

OPI has a wide variety of beautiful color nail paint and gorgeous packaging for girls. They claim that the OPI nail paints are 10-free, but you cannot find any evidence online of whether it’s true or not.

They brag about not having toxic chemicals such as toluene, formaldehyde, and DBP, which is true. But they are not telling customers about the other harmful ingredients such as camphor and Benzophenone 1.

It can cause nausea, dizziness, and adverse effects on the endocrine system if we inhale.

Another reason to avoid these nail polishes is that they are overpriced. Moreover, OPI varnishes are not resistant enough, which means you have to use an additional transparent coating, which can be another reason for avoiding these nail paints.

Main Reasons To Avoid:

  • Use of toxic chemicals.
  • Not sufficiently resistant.


Another come-on of our worst nail polish brands is Essie. Although it is a well-known brand and girls are getting attracted towards it. But if you are concerned about the health of your nails, you should avoid buying Essie.

Like OPI, Essie also has some toxic ingredients you might not want to apply to your nails: aluminum powder and dimethicone. Both of them are not suitable for your body to absorb regularly.

Another reason to avoid these nail paints is their high cost. It’ll not last long if you don’t apply this nail paint without a base and not fixed with another coating.

So maybe you should avoid wasting your bucks on this one and choose an alternative instead.

Main Reasons To Avoid:

  • High cost.
  • Not last longer.
  • Harmful chemicals.
Toxic Nail Polish Brands


3. Sally Hansen:

Sally Hansen has launched its new range of nail paints known as “Good. Kind. Pure” which they claim are 100% vegan and 16-free. But no proof can be found online regarding its authenticity.

It is a well-known brand with a wide range of beautiful lacquer, but some of them have ingredients that you might not be a fan of. It contains triphenyl phosphate, a toxic chemical that can lead to allergies.

After applying the nail paint, if you see it in the light, you might be highly disappointed to see steaks on the tips of your nails.

It’s a big no for thin nails because it can make your nails even more delicate than before. So you should avoid buying this nail paint and look for the best alternatives.

Main Reasons To Avoid:

  • Not last longer
  • Contains toxic substances

4. Maybelline:

We know that some products of the Maybelline are the best, but here we are talking about nail polishes. Buying nail paints from Maybelline is a big no from our side.

Maybelline nail paints keep chipping. Even if you apply two coats, it’ll still vanish within 24 hours and one shower.

The brush with this nail gel is extremely thin, so applying the liquid to the nails is not easy. Moreover, it takes hours to dry fully.

Maybelline lacquer is not for you if you are a working woman and cannot apply new nail paint every other day. The peeling and chipping occur too early. It’s better to choose an alternative.

Main Reasons To Avoid:

  • Peeling occurs so soon.
  • The brush is thin.

5. Revlon:

Revlon is the last one on our list that we can say is not worthy of your time and money. It contains an aluminum powder which is considered a toxic chemical.

The minimum amount of aluminum powder inhaling is alright, but using this nail paint regularly can lead to several health issues, such as lung problems.

Also, the Revlon nail gel doesn’t last long. You’ll see it coming out of your nail after drying.

Furthermore, the brush is skinny and needs an extra stroke. Pigmentation is also not good, but it varies.

You may observe a patchy texture for some shades and an uneven finish. The effects of the matte shade fade away within 4-5 days.

Reasons To Avoid:

  • Patchy texture for some shades.
  • Not long-lasting.
  • Keep chipping.

Best Alternatives of Nail Polish Brands:

Many nail paint brands promise to provide quality at any cost. Being the best alternative, they tried their best to deliver your desired product at affordable prices.

It is insane to expect the same quality from each brand, but with our recommendation, the following list would help you.

1. Chanel:

Chanel has various nail gels, including classic, long-wear candy apple reds, and sleek, feminine pinks. What makes them unique from the others is their 5-Free formula.

It doesn’t contain toxic chemicals such as toluene, formaldehyde, or formaldehyde resin. dibutyl phthalate, or camphor. These ingredients have a strong odor and can cause numerous health issues, including asthma.

Chanel lacquers are long-lasting and can be used daily. A few years ago, the quality wasn’t the same as it is now, we can say that the brand has improved a lot. In the past, the nail polishes were not long-lasting and kept chipping soon after drying.

Some of Chanel’s popular nail polishes are Ballerina, Organdy, Ribbons, particuliere, Gondola, and many more. Grab your hands on your favorite color.

Main Reasons To Pick:

  • Long-lasting.
  • Non-toxic.

2. Red Carpet Manicure:

You don’t have to go to fancy salons and spend tons of dollars for a regular manicure. Have you ever heard about Red carpet manicure gel before? If you haven’t, bear with us till the end.

You can do gel manicures at home for half the price you give in the salon. You’ll get all the manicure essentials in the starter kit.

The provided instructions are easy to follow, and everyone can understand them easily. After doing this, your nail can remain glossy for 7 days.

Main Reasons To Pick:

  • Inexpensive than the salons.
  • Easy to use.

3. Swiss Beauty:

The last brand that is best for nail paints is Swiss Beauty. The wide range of stunning lacquer is specially manufactured to care for your nails.

After applying a single coat, you will see the incredible shining and rich color pigmentation on your nails.

Moreover, the formula is easier to apply and dry quickly. The brand ensures a long-lasting and non-chipping experience with your nails.

With the wide variety of colors, you can shape your nails according to the latest trend you see on social media.

It adds more shine and gloss to your nails for a long time. Add this one to your nail collection because it is worth buying.

Main Reasons To Pick:

  • Vibrant colors.
  • Long-lasting.
  • High color pays off.


We have tried to cover all the essential aspects you should consider while shopping for nail paints.

Ensure you know about the lacquer ingredients because toxic chemicals can lead to several health issues.

Keep in mind what you are looking for. From brand to the range of color, check everything before buying.

There are various options available you can choose according to your needs. We hope that you’d like our suggestions.

Steven Settles Author

Steven Settles is an ISCET-certified master in appliance repair. He has aced the National Appliance Service Technician Certification Exam, showcasing his exceptional diagnostic and repair skills. With an in-depth understanding of the latest repair technologies and a keen eye on evolving industry standards, Steven is a go-to expert for any appliance issue.

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