Monday, July 18, 2011

Formaldehyde vs. Formaldhehyde Resin

This is a pretty popular match up on the MUA nail boards, so I thought I would clear things up in a very scientific and boring way.  Get your pillows folks.  I promise to show you something pretty in the beginning and the end though! :)

First a little eye candy:

Color Club - Pucci-licious
2 coats.  I swear I couldn't see that bald spot on my middle finger in person.

Hubba Hubba!  I love this purple. Uh yea, so my camera likes to make it blue.  Rebecca, however, has some nice pictures of it here.  It dries really fast to a semi-matte finish.  I always like to shine it up with topcoat!

Now lets talk about Formaldehyde vs Formaldehyde Resin

The name itself gets used incorrectly constantly.  I myself do it all the time because it is still incorrectly written on many ingredient lists.  So let's clear things up.  Formaldehyde is actually a gas.  It can not exist in your hardener/treatment in this form. Unless you're gassing your nails, wtf does that mean I don't know, it usually exists as a liquid.  Formaldehyde mixed with water makes a totally new compound (with its own physical and chemical properties) called Formalin, or even more accurate Methylene Glycol.  This is the chemical that is put in hardeners and the correct name that companies should be using.  The naming misnomer is a relic of the past, which you can read about further here.     

Formaldehyde gas is the real "poison" that can cause cancer.  However, even then you would have to inhale formaldehyde gas in large doses and for long periods of time.  I am talking about the type of exposure one would get in a formaldehyde manufacturing plant and not from nail treatments/hardeners evaporating.

So unless you have sensitivity to formaldehyde gas don't allow the fear mongering to rule your life.  Do your own research and always use common sense.

Need a nail hardener? This series may be of use.

Formaldehyde Resin:
Formaldehyde Resin (or you may see it on ingredient lists as Tosylamide/Formaldehyde Resin or TSFR) is an ingredient in nail polish used to add flexibility and improves adhesion to the nail plate.

Formaldehyde gas is used in the production of Formaldehyde Resin, however when all is said and done it's a completely different chemical.  There may be traces of formaldehyde gas left in the formaldehyde resin, but they are in the same concentration levels found in some foods, even organic foods.  Uh, yea, so unless you have an allergy to organic grown apples, there is very little health risk (both of the allergy or cancer type). 

Again, do your own research and use common sense. 

The shortest conclusion ever:

Formaldehyde (gas) =/= Formalin =/= Formaldehyde Resin

There is very little in common with these chemicals.  OH if you're confused, =/= means 'does NOT equal', mmm kay?

Eye Candy Time!

That's my cat eating his own foot.



  1. Very imformative! Thanks for the info - definitely NOT a snooze fest. Your kitteh is cute - even if he is eating his own foot. LOL

  2. Hahaha! You just went all scientific our asses! Awesome! It's crazy how some people freak out about certain ingredients without doing some research. Wikipedia people! I'm kinda obsessed with it. Don't mind me.

    Keep posting! I love reading your blog!

  3. You can go mad scientist anytime! I love it!

  4. How interesting! I totally did not know this. I also quite enjoyed the eye candy.

  5. Thank you for the explanation. Great post!

  6. lovely post! . very informative. one of the millionth reasons why i love ur blog :)

  7. My brainy beauty....gotta love the fact that only you can make a topic like this actually interesting! Oh, and about your cannibalistic cat, maybe you need to feed him?LOLOLOL! Thanks for clearing all that up....I actually was quite curious - should have known to just ask you!

  8. Thank you for the information AND the eyecandy <3 your cat is so precious~!

  9.  ♥ the info &  ♥ the eye candy!

  10. I love your nerdiness, your beautiful nails, and your cutie pie cat :)

  11. The cat was good eye-candy indeed :)

  12. Yay for science, reason, common sense & you!

  13. Pucci-Licious looks awesome, kitty is cute! And thanks for clearing up the formaldehyde business, some people go a little hysteric when it comes to chemicals in nail polish, lol!

  14. I think this was a great post and your cat is soooo cute <3

  15. Thanks for this great post, you're the best! You know that, right? =)

    Pucci-licious looks lovely and your cat eating his own foot: too cute. ♥

  16. oooh, thanks for the little shout-out! i hope my shout out to you yesterday brought you many new readers :)

  17. @Megan - Thank you! Yay, I am really glad boredom did not overcome you. :P He was super into cleaning his footsie that day.

    @Annie - Boooya lol. Exactly, as the super nerdy saying goes ... "knowledge is power"

    @jbrobeck - :D Muahahahah lol

    @Laura - I tricked you into reading some facts using eye candy. Mission accomplished! :D

    @Jen - My freaking pleasure. Thank you for reading AND commenting!

    @McDiaz714 - Wow, what a fantastic compliment. Thank you! - See I told you, you ARE sweetness!

    LOL ... Oh yea, I totally starve his ass, lol. Jk, jk, he gets crazy into cleaning his feet and often confuses them for food LOL

    @Claudia - Your welcome! He told me to lick your nose :D

    @♥beauxs mom - Thank you! xo

    @Maribeth - Awww, thanks. We love you right back.

    @Helga - Thank you. Meow!

    @April - Awwwww, I want to smother you with hugs, k?

    @Solveig - Yea really, the only thing we need to be hysterical about are new polish collection, ya know!?

    @Annie - Thank you so much!

    @AmyGrace - Well hello there perfect nails! Thank you! :D

    @Rebecca - Oh girl my head just exploded. Thank you!!!! <3

  18. I pretty much agree with you that TSFR isn't anything to freak out about, but I do understand why people don't want it in their nail polish. Formaldehyde can be bio-accumulative so the less of it the better, right? If I have the choice between a polish with TSFR and without, I'm going to do without it. Great article though! :D

  19. Great post and awesome eye candy :)

  20. Great post, i'm still trying to find a hardener that will make my peeling spliting nails better, thanks for the explanation, really intersting, love your kitteh x

  21. kitteh!!! I still have an aversion to the word formaldehyde but understand what you're saying :)

  22. Can I just say how much I love the fact that you make the science of nail polish so easy to understand?
    And Puccilicious is hawt on you!

  23. @Amani - In my search Formaldehyde is NOT bio accumulative, but this is exactly why people should do their own personal research and make decisions based on common sense ....

    @The Nail Buff - haha thanks!

    @jazzqueen64 - email me if you have questions :)

    @GothamPolish - No prob bob. I'm just putting out information not trying to change anyone's mind :)

    @ABOP - Why yes you can, haha. Thank you! <3

  24. @destany - It was my pleasure ... actually I had to, my cat told me he would bite his foot off if I didn't. :P

  25. Has anyone tried Quimica Alemana Nail Hardener? You can't find it in stores, so I buy it on Ebay. It is manufactured in Colombia. It has been AMAZING for my nails. I wear 2 coats either alone, or as a base coat. For me, it works!

  26. Super helpful thanks so much! and what a cutie kitty.