How much nail varnish do you use?


I have been doing a safety assessment and I needed to estimate how much nail varnish you apply.  I assumed that somewhere there was some kind of official guidance on this figure published by, say, the Nail Varnish Marketing board or something.  Google rarely lets you down on this kind of thing, but I could find no such data point.

But never fear.   I have an accurate balance, I have a bottle of nail varnish and I have most importantly a set of nails.  I am also a man which is good.  Men generally have bigger hands than women.  Although women use more nail varnish than men one cannot of course assume that no males use any at all.  In fact quite a few do.  So I can now reveal that the amount it took to cover all ten of my nails was 0.2g.

This is a fact of the utmost triviality to most people most of the time.  But when you want to know you want to know.  As I seem to have been the first person to put this fact into the public domain I am now going to consider myself as the world authority on how much nail varnish you use.   It isn’t exactly Einstein’s theory of relativity but it is nice to make a contribution to human knowledge.


8 thoughts on “How much nail varnish do you use?”

  1. I admire your dedication to the cause. Seriously, well done.

    But I do note that this can only be considered an approximation; some polishes go on much thicker (and therefore, probably, heavier – or not, what about relative densities?) than others. Also, was this one coat or many?

    (I apply nail varnish a couple of times a week. I generally have two coats of base coat, two or three of colour, and one of top coat.)

  2. Thanks Jenny, both for the kind comment and for the information. Yes it has to be an approximation in the absence of actual data. If I get enough comments like yours I could probably write a paper on the subject and get it published.

  3. It would be useful to know the average use of nail varnish. I have a huge collection (or small by other standards) and it would be fun to know how many hundreds of years it will take to use. Maybe it could help compulsive shoppers from buying more nail polish? 🙂

  4. I think if you reckon on about 5 coatings per ml you won’t be too far off. This would give us a useful metric for assessing just how bad your nail product obsession is.

    On that reckoning you would get through 7.3 10 ml bottles a year so to get to a century you’d have to have 730. I think that number represents the borderline between being very keen on nail products and having a problem.

  5. On nail polish boards I’ve been told your standard 15ml bottle lasts for 40 manicures. Of course the girls were probably estimating too. I guess this puts their calculations at 0.375ml per mani. Maybe they wrote assuming 2 layers of polish each time.

  6. I typically apply 1 coat of base, 2-3 (more often 3) of colour and 1 of top coat. So that would make it 1g assuming that one of my coats is similar to yours in size, thickness and density 🙂

  7. But as a man your nails are short. Women’s nails can be twice as long, especially the kind of woman that uses nail polish twice a week.

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