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What Is Breathable Nail Polish + The Best Ones In The UK

Nothing says ‘I have my sh*t together’ like a perfectly painted manicure, with no chips in sight. This is why when picking nail varnish, we usually stick to the best long-wearing polishes.

But something else to consider when choosing your next varnish is whether or not it’s ‘breathable’…

What is breathable nail polish?

Breathable nail polish is a lacquer which contains a specific type of polymer that allows air and water vapour to pass through it.

How is breathable nail polish different to regular nail polish?

Regular nail polishes tend to block both water and air vapours from coming in contact with the nail, which, if you’re a constant polish wearer, can contribute to dry, brittle or weakened nails.

By being ‘breathable’, these oxygen-friendly polishes don’t disturb the nails natural state.

What benefits does breathable nail polish have for the nails?

A lot of breathable nail polishes are also enriched with essential oils to hydrate and keep nails healthy while providing a coat of colour.

For Muslim women, a bonus of breathable polish is that it can be worn during prayer.

The Muslim faith includes a cleansing ritual before prayer called ‘wudu’. Because water can’t penetrate regular polish, it doesn’t count as wudu. But because breathable polish can, they can pray without worry. It also helps that many breathable polishes are halal.

Is breathable nail polish as long-lasting as regular polish?

It can be, yes. But just like regular nail polish, this will depend on the brand and the formula they use. In general, you should see no immediate difference between a breathable polish and a regular polish. Both provide a coat of colour, it’s just the underlying formulas that are different.

Our edit of the best breathable nail polishes: