It’s all about education and understanding. We were incredibly thoughtful about how we created the experience at The Water Room, and because of that, we also want to share some details about why it isn’t your average nail salon —

Products

At The Water Room, we only use polishes that are 5-free or better. That means that at a minimum, they are free of the 5 most toxic ingredients commonly found in most conventional nail polish: Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin, Camphor, Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), and Toluene. (To learn more, click here.) Also, because we do not offer Acrylic, SNS Powder, Dip Gel, conventional gel services, or even conventional nail polish, our air quality is much better than at other nail salons. The other products sourced for our signature services are also expertly-vetted, and pass the “Bare Beauty” test, to be clean of all toxic ingredients as well as cruelty-free, gluten-free and vegan.

Waterless Manicure

Yep! Our nails are alive, and they are very porous. Did you know that nails can absorb up to 25% of their weight in water in a single soak? During a typical manicure, each hand soaks for about 5 minutes, making nails softer, and even more porous, and then toxic products are applied one after another. If that sounds counterintuitive to you, we agree.  Also, if you ever wondered why your polish peels off so soon after a manicure, the water is probably to blame. Polish can’t fully adhere to a soft, “wet” nail.

Sanitation

The Water Room takes sanitation seriously. We use freestanding pedicure bowls – the jets of whirlpool baths at typical salons are breeding grounds for bacteria – which are cleaned with hospital-grade disinfectant after each use. All stainless steel tools (clippers, nippers, and pushers) as well as glass nail files are bagged in pouches with indicator strips and sterilized in an autoclave. (An autoclave is a piece of medical equipment that sterilizes metal and glass implements through the use of high temperatures and high-pressure steam. This process kills all bacteria, viruses, fungi, and spores.) Beware of nail salons that purchase the pouches, but not the autoclave.  All non-metal tools, such as buffers and orange wood sticks, are single use.

Recycling

In some states, old nail polish is considered hazardous waste, and it is illegal to put it in the trash. We encourage our customers to bring in old polish bottles from any brand, and we’ll dispose of them through the proper channels. For every bottle you recycle with us, you will receive 10% off a new bottle of 5-free-or-better polish.

Glass Nail Files

Once you switch, you will never go back. Ordinary nail files create tiny fractures at the edge of the nail, which can weaken the nail and cause it to split, peel and chip. Because glass files are so hard, and the filing surface so extremely fine, you can file in any direction without damaging the nail; it actually seals the layers of keratin together.  Glass nail files can also be sanitized and sterilized, which make them one less thing we have to throw in the trash! Effective, pretty and eco-friendly.

Cuticle Care

Cuticles serve an important purpose! Cuticles protect nails from infection; when they are removed, the nail is left vulnerable to bacteria and fungus. Trimming or cutting live cuticles is done for aesthetic purposes only; this practice makes your cuticles grow back faster and fray more easily. At The Water Room, we push back the cuticle of the nail and only lightly trim hangnails and loose dead skin. After a few consecutive services with us, the condition of your cuticles is likely to improve.

Prices

Our prices are slightly higher than those at a typical nail salon, and we are happy to tell you why. First, all of the nontoxic products we use in our services cost more than the conventional brands. We have carefully selected natural products that are free of cheap, synthetic filler ingredients that could harm your skin, nails, health, and the health of our employees. Second, we pay our employees fairly. These women work extremely hard, and we couldn’t meet our customers’ needs without them. They deserve a decent wage, a healthy environment and respect for their skills. We proudly stand behind our ethos – and our prices.