If you have been on the internet in the past four days, it's pretty safe to say you came across a post about nail salons. A recent New York Times expose on the nail salon industry has generated shock waves throughout the country, and even inspired the Governor of New York to declare emergency measures to protect nail salon workers. I mean, holy wow! As a long-time green beauty advocate and natural nail technician since 2009, I am beyond excited and happy to see these issues getting overdue media attention and in-turn, the regulatory agencies taking the steps needed to create reform. It is with a lot of courage from activists, legislators and advocates such as myself, that the beauty industry will finally receive a long overdue makeover.
To give you a little history, Noktivo began with one mission in mind: to offer beauty lovers in Chicago a cleaner, and healthier alternative to their routine pampering and cosmetic purchases. The United States has not passed a law regulating the ingredients in personal care products since 1938. Yes, you read that right. 1938. To top that, the European Union has spent the past two decades banning or restricting more than 1,300 of the over 80,000 chemicals on the market today. The United States has only banned 11 to date. Currently the FDA is the agency in charge of regulating cosmetics, but due to restraints on resources, loose regulation and simply, lobbying power of larger corporations, the FDA has not been successful in making sure that even chemicals that are known carcinogens (like lead and formaldehyde) are still in commerce. And more than likely, you’ll find these ingredients in your lipstick and nail polish.
So what does this mean for the future of nail salons? Quite simply, it means reform. The phasing out of artificial nail services unless proper ventilation and safety wear is provided, banning ingredients from products that are known to be harmful and taking better care of the workers who take care of our hands and feet. Most of the changes you probably won't even notice. That wonderful scrub will still feel the same, but instead of being made of ingredients you can't pronounce, it will be made with things like sugar, salt, honey and oils like we use here. Nail polish manufacturers will soon be required to remove formaldehyde from their formulas which some already do.
We have been at this natural nail salon thing a long time, but if you can't make it into Noktivo, here are a few tips to go green during your next manicure:
While we understand the concerns these articles raise on the consumer side, the last thing us industry professionals want is for our beauties to feel scared to get pampered. Don't be. These articles highlighted salons that were doing things way wrong, and that is NOT the norm. Plenty of nail salons in your neighborhood are doing things right and will continue to do so. This is just the beginning and rise of something new, welcome to a new era of beauty.
Written by: Jenny Duranski, Owner/ Founder and Green Nail Technician of Noktivo Natural Nail Spa
The team from Noktivo shares tips, tricks and tidbits for greening your beauty routine. <3