Q: I usually store my fingernail polish in the refrigerator, in a freezer bag, yesterday I took the bag out to do my nails,
about two hours later I was getting ready to put the bag back in the refrigerator & one of the bottles broke (quite a mess, but
luckily, only inside of the bag). Is there a better solution to storing the bottles? This is the second time in a year that this
has happened. Years ago someone had told me if you store your polish there it would go on smoother.
A: The idea behind this is that the cooler temperature will prolong the “shelf life” of the nail polish. This has some basis in
truth, but has its own problems, since the colder the polish is, the thicker its consistency will be, and the polish should usually
be allowed to warm back to room temperature to be easiest to apply. The chemical component in nail polish that keeps it fluid truly
only evaporates to any significant degree when the bottle is open.
My own mother and aunt used the “refrigeration” method for storing their polishes, with
my mother using the tray/box from kitchen matches to stand her bottles in, while my aunt used a storage bag (like you describe).
My aunt did have an occasion where she had to discard the whole bag because a bottle broke, while my mother never had a problem
with breakage. I think the problem you have could simply be a matter of the bottles jostling against one another resulting in
damage and possible weakening of the bottles. Simply understand that this opinion is based on my anecdotal evidence.
While keeping your polish in the refrigerator won’t harm it, the benefits are marginal in
practice. Consider that the shelf life of nail polish is usually only one year whether it is opened or unopened. The better option
might be to invest in a bottle of nail polish thinner, which can be used to restore the consistency of any polish that has become
too thick to apply smoothly.