Conventional nail polish removers use acetone and a cocktail of other chemical solvents, many of which are derived from petroleum and can cause health problems. Green varieties—including acetone-free, water-based, and cruelty-free alternatives—eschew most or all of these chemicals in favor of more earth- and health-friendly ingredients.

What to look for when choosing natural nail polish remover

Find acetone-free nail polish remover: Acetone is the key ingredient in conventional nail polish removers. While it is not a known or probable carcinogen, contact with high levels of acetone can be fatal. Inhaling moderate to high levels of acetone can lead to myriad health concerns, including fatigue, headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, ear, nose, and throat irritation, dermatitis, and abdominal pain. This chemical solvent can contaminate waterways in production and pollutes indoor air: its presence tends to be higher inside homes than outside due to its use in household chemical products.

Choose water- or mineral-based, instead of chemical solvent-based, nail polish remover: Conventional nail polish removers are mostly made of chemical solvents, which, when applied, evaporate into the air and give off chemical fumes which the user then inhales. Water- and mineral-based nail polish removers replace most or all of these chemicals with water and other natural ingredients. Specifically, look for those that say “water-based” or “mineral-based” on the label.

Look for nail polish remover that does not employ animal testing: While you’re contemplating green attributes, you may also wish to join the cruelty-free movement. Just keep in mind: a company may claim that they don’t employ animal testing for their products, but without third-party verification, it’s hard to know whether these statements are in fact completely true. 
So stick to those products certified as cruelty-free by looking for products with the Leaping Bunny Logo or the Certified Vegan Logo. You can rest assured that no bunnies (or monkeys or cats for that matter) were harmed in the making of these non-animal-tested products.