Tuesday, August 21, 2007

New York Times highlights hazards of chemicals found in most nail salons

We're finally starting to see more attention and focus on the hazards of the toxic chemicals found in most nail salons (avoided like the plague at Julep).

The New York Times recently highlighted studies that have found that prolonged exposure to toluene, formaldehyde and dibutyl phthalate has been associated with poor performance on tests of attention, mental processing speed, memory and verbal learning. And children who were prenatally exposed to the compounds these workers use performed worse on tests for cognitive function, language and behavior.

I think of these compounds like second hand smoke at restaurants. It's a nuisance and unpleasant for the casual guest, but much more of a health threat to the person who works in that environment day in and day out.

Women - please stop the madness! Natural nails can be just as beautiful and strong in almost every case as artificial nails - without the health hazards. (Regular use of cuticle oil works miracles).

This is not, by the way, just an issue at your regular discount salon. Most high-end spas also offer artificial nail services that involve toxic chemicals (just think about the glue it takes to put an acrylic nail in place - and then think about the dissolver it takes to remove that glue).

I'm excited - for our guests and for our employees - that Julep is a natural nails only parlor. Since artificial nails have accounted for most of the growth in this industry over the past decade, when I wrote a business plan that excluded those services, a lot of industry folks were skeptical.

So thank you, dear guests of Julep, for believing in us and being part of a healthier alternative in nail care.