With nail salons finally open again after the fifth wave, it’s time to treat yourself to a shiny new mani-pedi. And while nail salons are a dime a dozen in Hong Kong, the nail industry is one of the least eco-friendly sectors in the beauty industry. Luckily, with sustainable beauty practices on the rise, the planet doesn’t always have to pay the price as we pamper ourselves.
Traditional nail polish contains formaldehyde (a carcinogen and skin irritant that makes polish shine and resist chipping), toluene (a nail polish solvent that may also be a neurological toxicant), and butyl phthalates (which makes polish flexible), but today, we have safer and more eco-friendly options available. All you have to do is look, and we’ve done the hard work for you!
Here are some terms to get familiar with:
- 3-Free means the polish is free of toluene, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), and formaldehyde. For instance, Essie and OPI are now 3-Free.
- 5-Free is free of camphor and formaldehyde resin on top of 3-Free – the bare minimum for natural brands.
- 7-Free, on the other hand, takes triphenyl phosphate (TPHP) and xylene out of the mix in addition to being 5-Free.
- 9-Free is the next tier, being free of ethyl tosylamide, lead, and parabens, too!
Moving on, there are also 10-, 12- and 15-free nail polishes out there, which just means that they are free from other scary toxins as well. If you’re looking for a sustainable mani-pedi in Hong Kong, read on for some of 8Shades’ approved nail salons.
Eco-friendly Nail Salons in Hong Kong
Melomist’s soak-off gel polish is 7-free, which is pretty much the gold standard if you ask us! They also offer a wide range of mani and pedi services, including lavender and spearmint scented salt scrub for soft and smooth skin.
Melomist, 3/F, Cheung Hing Commercial Building, No. 37-43 Cochrane Street, Central, +852 2450 2220
2. Emmanuel f.
Promising to use “only natural, certified organic and eco-friendly ingredients”, the award-winning Emmanuel F has a French touch and offers 7-free polishes that are pregnancy-safe, vegan, and cruelty-free!
Emmanuel F, G/F, 176 Wellington Street, Central, +852 2167 8280
At Tinted, you’ll have the non-toxic option of Green Flash by Manicurist, the first clean gel nail polish that can be removed like ordinary polish. The best part? It’s 12-free, vegan, cruelty-free and contains no “bad ingredients” (such as endocrine disruptors, CMR, sensitising monomers or hydroquinone). Not to mention this Causeway Bay spot’s beautiful and creative nail art, which is every girl’s dream.
Tinted, 5/F, 18-20 Pak Sha Rd, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, +852 6012 6444
4. Nail Me
Aiming to nourish and nurture its customers, Nail Me lets you choose from 7-free and 9-free products, and even offers manis and pedis for men! The best part is, you can choose from their three locations in Tsim Sha Tsui, Wanchai, and Taikoo.
Nail Me, 1/F, 1 Wing Fung Street, Admiralty, +852 2529 8166
5. The Nail Library
The Nail Library is Hong Kong’s only official Christian Louboutin Room and offers 9-free, vegan, and cruelty-free alternatives! This prestigious salon is truly a luxurious experience with a sustainable twist.
The Nail Library, 2/F, 76 Wellington Street, Central, +852 6298 8391
See also: 8 Ingredients to Avoid in Your Shampoo
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