Products

We Tested This Non-Toxic Color-Changing Nail Polish—And It Really Works

This is so cool!

If you grew up in the ’70s, the ’80s or the ’90s, odds are you either had a mood ring or knew someone who did. Seeing the colors change before your eyes was fascinating, even if it was actually just telling you the temperature of your finger — not really your mood.

Even so, they were popular for decades and you can still find them in some stores and on Amazon. If you’re not up for wearing a giant ring on your finger, however, there’s a product on the market that does nearly the same thing, but in a more subtle way: color-changing nail polish.

One such brand, Del Sol, says their non-toxic polish contains a special technology that reacts within seconds when exposed to sunlight. Free of chemicals like toluene, formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate and camphor, Del Sol says the polish is safe for everyone and available in more than 30 shades.

Each polish is technically two colors, as the polish will appear as one color when you first paint your nails and then change when you go outdoors. The polish reacts to exposure to either the sun or to ultraviolet light.

Amazon

I have only had my nails professionally done one time and, while I often have polish on my toes, it’s rare for me to do anything with my fingernails. Most nail polishes tend to chip so soon it hardly seems worth the time and effort spent painting them. However, I can easily be persuaded to try a nail polish that’s unlike any I’ve tried before, so I set out to give Del Sol’s a whirl.

I chose the color Thistle The Day Away because it seemed to have the biggest difference in color change, going from sky blue indoors to a rich pink when exposed to sunlight. Simply put, there would presumably be no confusion as to whether or not it had changed.

And change it did! The blue color was quite pretty and I wouldn’t have minded if it had stayed just like that but, within 10 seconds or so of stepping into the sun, my nails were pink! Take a look:

Kaitlin Gates

To say I was impressed is an understatement because I was honestly expecting very little change, if any.

Although the polish reacts with the sun, Del Sol says that 80% of the sun’s UV rays still pass through the clouds, so the polish will change even on a cloudy day.

As for the polish itself, it went on smoothly but was a bit thinner than other polishes I’ve used. Two coats worked perfectly, though, and actually made it seem gel-like. I’ve had it on for a few days now and, so far, it hasn’t chipped much, mostly surviving my typing, my yoga practice, my cleaning of dishes and many showers. If you’d like to try it, you can get it for $9.99 on Amazon.

Del Sol

If Del Sol’s color lineup isn’t piquing your interest, there are plenty of other color-changing nail polishes on the market for around the same price. Many can also be bought on Amazon.

This LECHAT Dare To Wear mood polish also changes color when exposed to heat, but is supposed to be activated by your own body temperature, not the sun. That means that if you wash your hands, for example, the color should change depending on the temperature of the water.

Or you could get this Shade Shifter multi-chrome nail polish that doesn’t require a temperature change. Instead, the color changes depending upon the viewing angle. That means that if you look at it from, say, the right, it may look like a totally different color than it does when you look at it from the left.

painting nails in nail salon, UV lap of quick dry nail polish manicure, focus on brush

Will you be trying Del Sol’s color-changing polish the next time you’re due for a manicure?

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