Can I get a pedicure while pregnant?

Really? Is nothing sacred?

Let me launch right into the nail polish issue here: it's full of crap. Traditionally nail polish has some dandy chemicals in it including toluene, formaldehyde, and dibutyl phthalate (DBP).

Toluene affects the central nervous system and is a possible reproductive and developmental toxin.

Formaldehyde (also called formalin) may cause allergic reactions in some people and it's a carcinogen.

As for dibutyl phthalate, studies suggest that phthalates cause birth defects in laboratory animals. No human studies have been done studying this link and many scientific groups have indicated that phthalates pose no danger. Phthalate has been banned in Europe after the European Union banned it along with many other personal-care product ingredients known or strongly suspected to cause cancer, mutations or birth defects.

Now that you're completely freaked out, here are two things to consider: one is that nail polish makers are under pressure to reduce or eliminate potentially toxic ingredients and in 2006, several makers agreed to phase them out – I found a link that lists them here. Two, these chemicals are everywhere, EVERYWHERE. Just to give you an example, some personal care products that contain phthalates include perfume, eye shadow, moisturizer, liquid soap, hair spray, face creams, shampoos and deodorants. We're already swimming in a sea of chemical shit so I'm not sure why nail polish is getting picked on.

Unless you're living in a remote cave then you're exposed to a plethora of horrible chemicals on a daily basis so this seems like a pretty small drop in the bucket. My inclination would be to get yourself a bottle of toluene-free, formaldehyde-free, and DBP-free Cha-Ching Cherry and get the piggies done up right (even if you can't see them anymore).

search: nail polish pregnancy, toluene, formaldehyde, DBP, list of toluene-free, formaldehyde-free, and DBP-free nail polish

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