What makes nailpolish melt styrofoam?What is nail polish?

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cburr | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

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First, it's nail polish remover, which is acetone, that does the trick.

Very simply styrofoam is made up of long strands of polymers with air trapped inside. Acetone is a solvent, which breaks down these strands and lets the air escape. As the air escapes, the styrofoam "melts" down into the small amount of residual polymer.