I think I may have repeated the phrase "stop moving" at least 27 times while painting my daughter's toenails this past weekend. She's 8 years old, and she's a wiggleworm. It would be easier to put nail polish on a baby.
Trust me; I know what I'm talking about. I put nail polish on my baby girl a few times when she was itty bitty.
Somehow this seems to shock people. Maybe because I'm one of those moms who didn't get her baby's ears pierced? That's a pretty classic beauty move for parents. It's certainly more classic than polishing a baby's toe nails.
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In fact, putting polish on a baby's tootsies is a surprisingly controversial topics among moms.
Some moms find it garish and inappropriate. These are typically the moms who think any sort of beauty regime should be held off until the teen years (and the later ones at that).
I disagree wholeheartedly. Nail polish is not going to turn a baby into a harlot when she is actually old enough to learn what the word means. It's just a splash of color! It's temporary!
And of course, it's adorable. Maybe that's a wee bit vain, but we can all use a little bit of pretty in our lives.
Nor do I really put stock in the idea that it's spoiling kids. If you're taking them in for professional salon pedicures, you are wandering into helicopter territory, but a mom slapping a dash of polish on a piggy is not going for the salon treatment.
Then there are the moms who say it's unsafe.
That's a concern that holds a bit more weight. Babies put everything in their mouths, even their toes (once they can!), and you don't want your baby swallowing something toxic. If you're using most drugstore polishes on a baby's toes, they could be ingesting something pretty awful.
But this is where today's moms are lucky. The push toward organic and "natural" beauty items has opened up a world of safe alternatives for parents who love colored piggy toes on their babes.
You can check out the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep guide to safe cosmetics to find products that are pretty safe for your infant. There's even safe nail polish remover these days (I swear by the Piggy Paint remover that is acetone-free and doesn't have that awful chemical smell of the stuff I grew up using).
So what are you waiting for?
Grab your polish and start painting. Maybe if you start early enough, they'll be better at holding still by 8 years old than my wiggleworm.
Would you put nail polish on a newborn?
Image via Hey Danielle/Flickr