Since 2001, Suncoat has been crafting nail polishes with a water base and none of the common toxic chemicals in most nail polishes. Suncoat was founded by a mom looking for a water-based nail polish for her kid. As a scientist, this mom set about creating such a polish.
Our Rating: 3 / 5 (See: How Leaf Score is calculated)
- Great option for kids and adults alike
- Free of the toxic chemicals found in most nail polishes
- Virtually odor-free, non-flammable, do not dry out or discolor nails, and mostly contain natural ingredients
|Country of Origin:||Canada|
|Ingredients:||Main ingredients: Aqua (water, ~65% in formula), acrylate copolymer / styrene-acrylate copolymer (~28% in formula) Other ingredients (all under 4%): propylene glycol n-butyl ether, dipropylene glycol dibenzoate.|
Pigments/colorant: may contain [+/-] mica (CI 77019), titanium dioxide (CI 77891), ferric ferrocyanide, iron oxide (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), chromium oxide (CI 77288), carmine (CI 75470)
These polishes use mineral pigments and natural ingredients for the most part, and all Suncoat Girl products are created and manufactured in Guelph, Canada. The water-based nail polishes do not contain:
- Phthalate plasticizers
- Glycol ethers
- FD&C dyes
So, what do they contain? Well, water for a start, plus acrylic copolymers (possibly including styrene-acrylate copolymer) and polyurethane (plastic), propylene glycol n-butyl ether, dipropylene glycol dibenzoate, mineral-based pigments and plastic glitter.
That’s right, Suncoat may have ditched the majority of toxic chemicals, but they still use plastic in their polishes and seem to contradict themselves over their promise not to use phthalates.
How so? Well, their advent calendar gift set lists microplastic polyethylene terephthalate (PET) as an ingredient (presumably in the glitter pot). Given their focus on children’s health and the effects of phthalates on health (and of microplastics on the environment), this seems at odds with their mission and their claim not to use phthalates.
Still, if you avoid the glitter, Suncoat nail polishes are some of the least toxic around. These polishes are said to be around 70% water, 1-10% film-forming polymers, and 1-3% natural colorants. Unfortunately, those colorants may include mica (of unknown origin), as well as titanium dioxide (CI 77891), ferric ferrocyanide, iron oxide (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), chromium oxide (CI 77288), and carmine (CI 75470). As carmine comes from crushed bugs, some of these nail polishes aren’t vegan (this includes the French Pink color).
The main challenges for water-based nail polish are getting the polish to stick to nails and creating a formula that dries in a reasonable amount of time. Suncoat’s scientist, Yinghcun Liu, has developed a patent-pending technology to create quick-drying water-based nail polish that is also long-lasting.
Suncoat recommend that you avoid soaking your nails in hot water during the first couple of hours after applying the polish and wait at least an hour before normal showering and dishwashing. They also recommend removing the polish weekly as the product is formulated to stick to the nail bed and will become harder to remove after this time.
Suncoat polishes have won a bevy of awards over the years, including an Excellence Award from Alive Magazine in Canada in 2004 and 2005 and Green Parents’ magazine award for Best Natural Nail Polish 2011. Their nail polish remover gel won the One Minute Miracle Beauty Product award in 2015 from The Kit magazine, and they have also won awards for their hair spray and other products.
The company also make mascara, liquid eyeliner, eye shadow and lip shimmer (all of which appear to be vegan and low toxicity). Their lipsticks contain animal-derived ingredients, however, so aren’t vegan-friendly.
All in all, Suncoat Nail Polish is a great option for kids and adults alike. Free of the toxic chemicals found in most nail polishes, these water-based polishes are virtually odor-free, are non-flammable, do not dry out or discolor nails, and mostly contain natural ingredients. Just steer clear of the glitter.
Suncoat Peelable Nail Polish is a great option for kids and adults alike (View Price on Amazon). The polish is water-based, odorless, and available in around a dozen colors. Like their regular polish, the peelable Suncoat polish uses mineral pigments such as mica, iron oxides, titanium dioxide, chromium oxide green, ultramarines, and ferric ferrocyanide, as well as carmine, alongside water, polyvinyl acetate, acrylate copolymer, and (in the glitter varieties) polyethylene terephthalate (PET).
The Suncoat Clear Base or Top Coat (View Price on Amazon) peelable version can be used to make your favorite nail polish easy to remove. The clear base is made with around 65% water added to acrylate copolymer or styrene-acrylate copolymer, propylene glycol n-butyl ether, and dipropylene glycol dibenzoate. The peelable base coat comprises around 65% water, plus polyvinyl acetate, and acrylic copolymer.
The Suncoat Girl water-based peelable nail polish (View Price on Amazon) is intended for use by children three years and older (under adult supervision). This polish contains water, acrylic copolymers, and polyurethane and (depending on color and glitter) may contain mica, titanium dioxide, carmine, iron oxides, ferric ferrocyanide, chromium oxide green, ultramarine blue, polyethylene terephthalate (plastic glitter).
The Party Palette Mini Nail Kit (View Price on Walmart) is a favorite with reviewers and won a Family Choice Award. It is also rated by EWG as 1, meaning low hazard.