Decorative Nail Coatings

This discussion of factors that contribute to multifunctionality refers only tangen-tially to the manufacture of these products, an area that is left to the specialist equipped to handle the explosive nature of the nitrocellulose primary film formers. Nail coatings by their very nature are multifunctional. While their primary function is purely decorative, they also protect the nail from many environmental elements, including but not limited to water exposure and the many waterborne cleansing materials and chemicals of routine daily life. Nail coatings also give some protection from the physical forces that often go unnoticed until exposure exceeds the physical strength of the nail, resulting in a broken nail. The polish coating can be visualized as a laminate of one or more layers depending on the number of coats and the types of polish used. When enamel is well bonded to the nail, a new structure is created that is stronger than either the uncoated nail or the dry freestanding films. This laminate can be optimized by using several types of polish layered one on top of the other.

This section discusses the three most common coatings making up the laminate structure of a finished manicure: a base coat, a pigmented layer, and a topcoat. While some compromises must be made, it is possible to formulate a single product to function as both base coat and topcoat. Different requirements pertain to each coating, but the three coatings almost always contain common ingredients, and the concentrations are adjusted to obtain the desired function. Table 1 gives |

examples of ingredients that make up each component of the three types of nail coating. All contain a primary film former (typically nitrocellulose), a modifying ^

Table 1 Ingredients of Typical Nail Coatings

Primary film formers3 Nitrocellulose, 0.25 second RS type Nitrocellulose, 0.5 second RS type Nitrocellulose, 5-6 second RS type Cellulose acetate butyrate, 0.5 second grades of nitrocellulose are supplied wet with either isopropyl alcohol or ethyl alcohol. The net amount of dry polymer's 70%; wetting alcohol, 30%.

Secondary film-forming resins Sucrose acetate isobutyrate Toluenesulfonamide-epoxy resin

Toluenesulfonamide-formaldehyde resin (used internationally, but not in United States)

Adipic acid-neopental glycol-trimetalic anhydride copolymer

Plasticizers Camphor Dibutyl phthlate Triethyl citrate Acetyl triethyl citrate Active solvents Ethyl acetate Butyl acetate Propyl acetate Diluents Ethyl alcohol, SDA 40B Isopropyl alcohol n-Heptane Suspending agents Stearalkonium hectocite Stearalkonium bentonite aCommercial resin, a plasticizer for the primary film former, and a solvent blend that keeps the solid ingredients in usable form. For pigmented formula, a suspension blend is prepared by using a mixture of the foregoing ingredients along with a modified hectorite or bentonite. The pigments and pearl essence materials used in nail enamel have been developed over the years and can be found in any of a number of public domain sources [7].

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