Myth-Busting: Is nail polish safe during pregnancy?


A manicure makes me feel more in control, mad as that may sound. And when I was heavily pregnant and couldn’t face rolling on and off of the masseuse’s couch or lying still long enough to get a facial, a relaxing pedicure was the perfect pick-me-up. However, nail polish is full of toxins, so I gave both manis and pedis a miss for the first trimester, and was never quite sure what I was and wasn’t allowed to do with my nails. Enter Doug Schoon, author of Nail Structure and Product Chemistry, for the definitive answer to a hot question – is nail polish safe?

“When nail salon clients discover they’re pregnant, one of the first questions they will ask you is, “Can I keep wearing my nail enhancements during my pregnancy?” or “Is it alright to wear nail polish or a UV gel manicure?” or “What about acetone removers, are they safe?” The answer is yes to all of the above. Pregnant women can safely wear any of these nail coatings, including artificial nails and nail polish! There is absolutely no reason to believe that wearing any type of nail enhancement or other nail coating is harmful during pregnancy. These products polymerizes or hardens very quickly, practically eliminating the chance that any of the product will penetrate beyond the topmost layers of the nail plate. Also, the level of exposure to salon chemicals while receiving nail services is miniscule and will create no risks to the pregnant client. Acetone doesn’t absorb through the skin in any appreciable amounts and this common nail coating remover is not known to any have harmful effects for pregnant women when used according to manufacturer’s instructions.”


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