Nail Polish | Illinois Poison Center 
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My Child Ate Nail Polish

Jul 03, 2020
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Nail Polish                                                                   



This information applies to children who have unintentionally swallowed a small amount. If the child swallowed more than one mouthful, is having symptoms, or if you are not positive of the exact substance or amount swallowed, call your local Poison Center immediately 1-800-222-1222 to speak to a nurse, pharmacist or physician for recommendations specific to your situation.  The call is free and confidential.


  • Toxicity Level:  Minimally toxic in small amounts such as a taste or lick.


  • What It Is:  Nail polish is a lacquer applied to finger or toe nails as a cosmetic.  There are several different formulations such as base coat, color coat and top coat. There are many brands of nail polish including  OPI, Revlon, Essie, Orly, Sally Hansen, etc. 


  • Toxicity: Nail polish is considered to be minimally toxic in a taste/lick amount and is considered to be a mild irritant to the stomach or intestines.


  • Possible Symptoms of o\Overdose or Poisoning:  Mild mouth or throat irritation, or one episode of vomiting may occur. 

NOTE:  You should be concerned if your child experiences these symptoms:  persistent or continued vomiting.  Call your local Poison Center right away at 1-800-222-1222.



  • What You Should Do:  If your child is not having any symptoms, give a few sips of water and observe for the symptoms described above.  If your child is having any symptoms, call 1-800-222-1222.

NOTE:  If your child has gotten this substance in their eyes, please view our Eye Exposure information.



If you have any further questions about this substance, or if your child is experiencing any symptoms, call the poison center experts who are available 24/7 via the free, confidential helpline: 1-800-222-1222.   Don’t guess, be sure!


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