|MadSci Network: Chemistry|
The ingredients in nail polish are various and its composition depends on the brand. But in general they include: nitro-cellulose (for hardening) dissolved in a solvent plus plasticizers (methacrylate and vinyl polymers), formaldehyde, camphor, acetone, ketone, toluene, suspending agents, dyes, etc. Some of the solvents in it, such as toluene, are know to be bad for your health and the environment. The fact that your nail polish dissolved Styrofoam may be due to the presence of toluene. Toluene is a known carcinogen and a strong solvent and synthetic starting block used in many industrial processes.
For more information check out: http://www.answers.com/topic/nail-polish
Hope this helps.
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