KC Springberg, founder of Northern Nail Polish.

KC Springberg, founder of Northern Nail Polish.

Northern Nail Polish founder, KC Springberg spends her days happily stirring up tiny bottles of stuff that glimmers, shimmers and shines.

The Traverse City resident began making her own nail polish six years ago after she learned about possible exposure to chemicals like endocrine disrupters and carcinogens that are found in many store-bought polishes. She loved painting her nails too much to quit and wondered if there were other options.

“So, while the world was quitting, I started researching nail polish — what are the ingredients, what was required to be in nail polish, what were the unnecessary toxins,” she recalled. “I found a formula that was 10-toxin-free, which means it didn’t have the ten toxins found in store bought polishes like toluene, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), and formaldehyde,” she explained.

She began experimenting with various formulas and wearing the results for about a year until friends and family not only clamored to buy it, but also urged her to sell it online.

When she began she focused on producing glitter nail polishes. “It was all holographic, shimmery and sparkly because that’s what I liked, but people asked for more matte colors so I made a whole line of that too,” she said.

KC added the solid colors last year and many of them are inspired by the natural beauty of northern Michigan and the people, places and things that exemplify the Great Lakes state.

Now the mom of a busy toddler, KC has decided to focus less on national sales and more on selling closer to home, the place that is near and dear to her heart. Even her logo is the state of Michigan, covered with glitter of course, and a heart over Traverse City where she grew up.

“I love the local clientele, they have that same love for Michigan and the Great Lakes that I do,” said KC.

She started selling at local craft shows in 2017, and will typically bring about 36 different colors, including seasonal favorites. 'Petoskey Stone' is her best seller, closely followed by 'Beach Glass.'

Her customers are women of all ages, from kids who love the neons to working women who are looking for something subtler.

“I’ve got something for everyone,” she said. “I’ve got the crazy colors for people who like to be out of the box and polish for women who work in an office and just want something sheer.”

KC admits her favorites are bright and bold, and that the sheers weren’t her style - but she thinks that customer feedback is important so when she was asked, she went to work to perfect a sheer polish. “I have one called 'Barely There,' that’s a nice neutral pink and that one has been flying off the shelf.”

“I think people come back because of the quality. They buy it first because of the name or the color but then they keep coming back because they love it.” KC explained. 

Excerpt from an article interview originally published in Grand Traverse Scene Magazine, written by Cymbre Foster.


One should never have to sacrifice health for beauty...


What is 10-Toxin-Free Nail Polish?

Northern Nail Polish is carefully handcrafted in Traverse City, Michigan using a 10-Toxin-Free formula. 

That means that all of the nail polishes sold on this website are not only made without the 3 common chemicals found in nail polishes (Toluene, Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde), but also without 7 other very dangerous chemicals (Formaldehyde Resin, Camphor, TPHP, Ethyl Tosylamide, Parabens, Phthalates, and Xylene). Northern Nail Polishes are FREE of these TEN chemicals. The same can’t always be said about mass produced nail polishes sold in salons and stores.

Northern Nail Polish is mother approved and tested ~ pregnancy and child-safe.

Northern Nail Polish is mother approved and tested ~ pregnancy and child-safe.

We are here to help you say 'NO' to these following toxins:

Toluene is a liquid that is used as a solvent and has the familiar smell of paint thinner. You can be exposed to toluene by breathing it in or getting it on your skin, causing skin irritation. Unfortunately, inhaling high levels of toluene is said to be harmful to your nervous system and can cause light-headedness and nausea. Toluene is a toxin that may also cause birth defects and developmental problems in children of pregnant women who have had extended exposure.

Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP) is a commonly used plasticizer and has been linked to cancer. DBP has also been connected to birth defects in studies involving lab animals. In fact, this toxin was added to the California Proposition 65 list of suspected teratogens, which are agents that cause malformations of an embryo.

Formaldehyde is a commonly used chemical to preserve and embalm dead animals (and humans). Its vapors are also irritating and can trigger asthma. Formaldehyde is also a known human carcinogen, a factor directly involved in causing cancer.

Formaldehyde Resin is a derivative of Formaldehyde, mainly used in the production of coatings and adhesives. It is not as toxic as Formaldehyde but can be an allergen.

Camphor is a poison that can cause seizures and disorientation if used in large doses. This chemical acts as a cover on your nails, depriving them of nutrients and causing yellow staining on your nails.

Triphenyl Phosphate (TPHP) is a chemical used in plastics to improve flexibility and as a flame retardant. A handful of animal studies and in vitro studies have suggested that it could be an endocrine disrupter which effects your hormones – in particular, it could potentially effect reproductive health and lipid metabolism (that’s where that click-bait “nail polish makes you fat” headline comes from).

Xylene is irritating to the skin, eyes, and respiratory tract. It can cause systemic toxicity by ingestion or inhalation. The most common route of exposure is via inhalation. Symptoms of xylene poisoning include CNS effects (headache, dizziness, ataxia, drowsiness, excitement, tremor, and coma), ventricular arrhythmia, acute pulmonary edema, respiratory depression, nausea, vomiting, and reversible hepatic impairment.

That’s why choosing to use ‘10-Toxin-Free’ Northern Nail Polish is a great choice not only for local economy, but for your own health too!

Additionally Northern Nail Polish sources ingredients from Cruelty-free and Vegan certified suppliers! 


What's in a Bottle?

Northern Nail Polish Ingredients:

Butyl Acetate, Ethyl Acetate, Nitrocellulose, Acetyl Tributyl Citrate, Isobutyl Acetate, Isopropyl Alcohol, Adipic Acid / Neopentyl Glycol / Trimellitic Anhydride Copolymer, Silica, Styrene / Acrylates Copolymer, N-Butyl Alcohol, Benzophenone-1. May also contain: D&C Violet #2, Polyester glitters, Mica/titanium dioxide/iron oxide.

KC Springberg, founder of Northern Nail Polish in her studio creating vegan 10-toxin-free nail polish.

KC Springberg, founder of Northern Nail Polish in her studio creating vegan 10-toxin-free nail polish.

Northern Nail Polish uses the most natural, vegan ingredients known to form a long lasting, chip resistant nail polish that can be easily removed by regular polish remover. 

Because Northern Nail Polish uses natural mica as the colorant to the nail polish, you don't have to worry about stains being left on your nails or any animal derived ingredients in the nail polishes.