Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Beauty Procedures and Pregnancy... Whats' Safe and What's not.

By Carma Haley Shoemaker

Manic ManicuresMany pregnant women find that their nails tend to grow more quickly, producing a need to groom them more often. What once was a three or four times a year task now becomes a once-a-month visit.

"Normally, my nails break and are very brittle so I keep them short,"says Crystal Riggs, a small business owner from Seneca, S.C. "I only have to trim or groom my nails every couple months because they just don't grow. But during my pregnancy, my nails grew longer, stronger, held up to everything including kids and dishes. I loved the fact that I "needed" to go to the salon to get my nails done, something I normally wouldn't do."

Visit any manicurist and you will see the finest collection of chemicals, from nail polish and removers to oils, paints and skin treatments, all believed to be safe. But according to a recent report from the Food and Drug Administration, research indicates that chemicals in nail polish, nail polish removers and the like, namely methyl methacrylate and acetonitrile (a chemical that breaks down into cyanide when swallowed), are in fact dangerous and can cause numerous health problems including skin irritation, contact dermatitis, rashes, poisoning and even death. These facts alone cause a concern and fear of manicures.

But according to manicurist, Heather Jacobson, it all depends upon the chemicals used and who uses them. "Not all manicurists use the same products or use them in the same way," says Jacobson. "For example, I use mostly natural or biodegradable products and the nail polish I use on my customers is edible." It's not that you could eat it right from the bottle, but if you do ingest it... as most women do from time to time from biting their nails, licking their fingers, etc. รข it won't harm you, as it has only natural ingredients. But others may still use products that contain chemicals that are not safe during pregnancy or otherwise. It is best to ask your manicurist or request she/he use natural products. And if you're not sure, simply skip the nail polish and have your nails buffed for a natural shine.

Barefoot's nail polish has no phalates, formaldehyde or Toluene. Other nail polishes are supposed to be recycled at your local gas stations. Shaklee’s can be thrown away in your garbage. Yet measures of its long-lasting and chipware qualities are equivalent to the top of the line nail polishes.

Question to Dr. Jim Greene --Director Product FormulationPersonal Care and Household

I have a customer whose nails yellow everytime she uses nail polish. She has not used -- yet. What causes this? She said that other women she knows complains of this also.

Dr. Jim Green's reply:.
This is usually caused by exposure to formaldehyde that cross-links theprotein in the nail and turns it yellow. She should try one nail with thebase/top coat for several days to make sure; but, there is less chance with a formaldehyde-free products...Jim

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