Many people attach great importance to their appearance, especially during pregnancy. Well-groomed nails can be part of that. You can paint your fingernails and toenails without worry as long as you pay attention to the choice of products you use. These should contain as few chemicals as possible. Many brands offer their coatings with the designation ‘3-free’, ‘5-free’ and up to ‘10-free’. This means that certain harmful chemicals, such as plasticisers or solvents, are not used. The higher the number before the word ‘free’, the fewer harmful substances are contained in the nail polish and the safer it is for you to use. You should also make sure that your nail polish remover contains as little of solvents (such as acetone, phenol or trichloroethylene) as possible, or none at all.

If you like to wear acrylic or gel nails, you can continue to wear them during pregnancy. However, it is important that you inform the nail studio that you are pregnant. There you can get advice on which procedures are safe for you. It is also a good idea to wear a mask while the old nails are being filed off. This way you avoid inhaling particles of the abraded plastic. Good studios should have extraction systems for this purpose to keep dust and vapours away from you. Remember that altered hormone levels during pregnancy can cause your nails to be more brittle than usual. Artificial nails may not hold as well or could tear more easily. Should that be the case, it would be best to have the artificial nails removed immediately. Your natural nails can then heal and you can better avoid inflammation or infection.

Artificial nails are not welcome in some hospitals. The medical staff fear that germs can accumulate under the nails. Therefore, it is possible that you will be asked to remove your artificial nails before giving birth. However, it is nevertheless recommended that you file your nails shorter before the due date. This helps the new mother hold her newborn more easily and also means she need not go to the nail studio so soon after the birth as her nails will need longer to grow out.