Although you may need a little extra pampering while trying to conceive - and during pregnancy - coating your nails with a cocktail of toxic chemicals while breathing in formaldehyde fumes may not be the most fertility - and baby - friendly way to give yourself a treat.
Nail polish remover contains fertility-baby toxins too so if you are a dedicated nail-painter you need to brush up on the many non-toxic options that are available.
What's all the flap about you may wonder? Nail polish contains a cocktail of chemicals known to cause birth defects and harm fertility especially a concern with formaldehyde, phthalates like DPT (dibutyl phthalate), toulene and a range of other volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Phthalates are connected to both male and female infertility.
Polish removers contain another assault of toxic chemicals too including acetone, methyl methacrylate, toluene, and ethyl acetate.DPT has already been banned from European nail polishes since 2006. The March of Dimes, an organization dedicated to the prevention of birth defects advises too that women should avoid nail polish and nail polish removers while pregnant. It is also advised that women avoid beauty salons that have a strong nail polish or polish-remover odor (hairspray similarly is another airborne environmental toxin to avoid due to high phthalate exposure).
As a fertility specialist, I feel that anything that's not safe in pregnancy is not good pre-conceptually either. Switching your beauty habits now means that you will have figured out how to replace toxic habits well before you conceive.
In recent years a whole range of non-toxic nail polishes have been introduced, they may be hard to find in a salon but they are easy to purchase for home-use especially online. You can check the safety of your current nail polish and polish remover at the cosmetic database link below.
If you are choosing 'green' brands of nail polish check out Honey Bee Gardens products which is a water-based, peel off polish, Anise and PeaceKeeper brands.
Many other personal care products contain phthalates too and are best avoided when trying to conceive. Perfumes and and products containing 'fragrance' on the label may contain a lot of phthalates. You can check the safety of products that you use regularly at the cosmetics data base below.
Check your moisturizers, shampoos, conditioners and make-up. If in doubt try choosing 100% organic products, they are phthalate free and can save you a lot of tedious label reading.
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