The Future of Nail Color: Using an ELN to Fuel Manicure Innovation

Consumer Packaged Goods, ELN

While gel nail products have drawn the most attention, companies are working on other innovative manicure goods. Can an ELN help their efforts?
Image source: Flickr CC user Fing’rs

Gel manicures have taken the beauty industry by storm. And why wouldn’t they? They can last a full two weeks without chipping, which sounds great to me. Whenever I paint my nails, I inevitably discover a scratch marring them less than a week later. For women whose hands take a beating because of their daily routines, being able to go for weeks without a manicure touch-up is a much-appreciated luxury. What makes gel manicures even more convenient is that they don’t require drying time. Speaking from personal experience, I’ve certainly ruined my fair share of manicures because I was too impatient and started moving around before the nail polish had completely set.

These attractive traits have contributed to the booming gel manicure market, which is estimated to be worth $59 million by 2020.1 Many companies are trying to capitalize on this sector’s popularity, including developing so-called at-home gel manicure products. Unfortunately, popularity brings with it a couple downsides. Some people remain concerned that the UV light used to cure gel nail lacquer might potentially cause skin cancer. And even if the risk of cancer is low, medical professionals agree that UV light exposure can age your hands prematurely. They actually recommend wearing sunscreen on your hands to protect them.2 Can you imagine wearing sunscreen to the nail salon?

When it comes to gel nail polish, application isn’t the only stage that leads to complications either. Removal poses a few risks as well. To remove a gel manicure, you have to soak your nails in acetone for 15 minutes. Repeated exposure can dry out your skin and nails. Thankfully, companies have worked to address these concerns by releasing products that improve overall nail health, but surely we can do better than that.

CPG Companies Can Use an ELN to Drive Nail Polish Innovation

The active, on-the-go lifestyle of today’s consumers drives the need for convenient products. If the lack of drying time is a positive feature of gel manicures, can you imagine how popular a nail color product would be if it offered faster application as well? Both of these traits are combined in spray-on nail varnish.3 Say goodbye to painstaking strokes of that nail polish brush. There are fewer things faster than spraying on nail color.

Regardless of gel manicures’ trendiness, plenty of room still exists for other nail products. For example, while not as long-lasting and durable as their gel counterpart, I still use regular nail lacquer. I’m positive many other consumers do as well. It’d be great, though, if it dried more quickly and would not be as prone to chipping. The idea of spray-on varnish appeals to me because of the speed in both application and drying, but I wish it didn’t sound so messy. Companies can build on these desirable traits and use them to develop innovative products.

Whatever angle companies do decide to take, however, they’ll need the correct tool to support their research. In this particular case, an electronic lab notebook (ELN) can store all information and results pertaining to the development of the next generation of nail color products. Ease of application, durability, and even color are all variables that can be tracked with an ELN. In addition, gel manicures may have many advantages over other nail color products on the market, but the concerns associated with application and removal remain a barrier to widespread adoption. An ELN can help companies improve the performance of gel manicures themselves—perhaps by decreasing the amount of time necessary to cure under a UV light or by changing the formulation so that a chemical less harsh than acetone can be used for removal. After all, if we can develop hair color that is safer to use, I have no doubt that it’s possible to do the same thing with long-lasting and convenient nail color—especially with the right tools.

The BIOVIA Notebook is an ELN that offers all the features a company needs to create innovative CPG products and improve on existing ones. Extensive tagging and searching capabilities make it simple for users to locate information and data from past and present experiments. A built-in template editor allows researchers to save time by tailoring procedures to specific needs and cloning common protocols. It also comes with security tools that protect your intellectual property, crucial in a mature, competitive market. Is your company interested in adopting an ELN to support your research efforts to develop exciting and innovative CPG products? Please contact us today to learn more about the BIOVIA Notebook.

  1. ” UV Nail Gel Market by Chemistry, and Regional Analysis – Global Trends & Forecasts to 2020 – Reportlinker Review,” October 21, 2015,
  2. “Love That Gel Nail Polish, But Know It Doesn’t Come Risk-Free,” May 2, 2014,
  3. “Spray on your nail varnish! How nails in a can are the newest innovation in getting the easiest manicure ever,” November 11, 2015,

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