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  • How to Survive the Hell That is Nail Clipping
  • Jennifer Aline Graham
    Jennifer Aline Graham
  • For Mom

How to Survive the Hell That is Nail Clipping

Nail Clipping

Photo Credit: Unsplash.com

Being a parent is not easy. Finding a system that works best for you and your little one makes any feared task, such as nail clipping, a little bit easier.

Hot Mess Mom vs. Those Feisty Clippers

Nail clipping has always seemed to be a feared activity for new parents. No one wants to see their child scratch themselves with daggers at the ends of their fingers. When it comes to nail clipping, many moms want to throw the clipper across the room and put socks on their baby’s hands until they are a teenager.

Being a new mother of twins, I did not realize how terrifying nail clipping really would be until it came time to try it out. The first time I attempted it, I didn’t get further than the second finger on one of my girls before she was crying out in pain because I clipped too much.

Like any mom who has experienced this, I was a hot mess.

When I asked my boyfriend what suggestions he would give when it came to nail clipping, he said, “Well, first I would start by taking the clippers from you so they don’t grow up without fingers.” Though he thought this was hilarious (and I thought it was annoying), I agreed with him. Between the two of us, he has proven to be the stronger parent when it comes to nail clipping (his fine motor skills are on par). Though it is helpful to be familiar with all those lovely parenting duties, some tasks can be divided due to strengths – and sometimes nail clipping is one of those tasks.

Real Parents Offer Advice to Help Ease Your Way into Nail Clipping

Being a new parent, I sought out advice and suggestions from more experienced parents. I have learned how important it is to be open and accepting of advice from others – and many parents feel empowered when being asked questions they have answers to. One mom may be confident in one thing and you could be in something else – so why not share the knowledge!

Here are some nail clipping tips that can help ease the experience (for both the parents and the baby):

  • Making up a fun nail clipping song or making funny faces to help distract
  • Using an infant nail clipper, cuticle nail clipper or nail clipper with a flashlight at the end
  • Clipping while the baby is sleeping so their hands are still
  • Some pediatricians recommend biting the nails so it is less likely to harm the nail bed
  • Covering the end of the nail clipper with tape or your thumb helps prevent clippings from falling in their eyes
  • Clipping the nails when your partner is feeding them a bottle

Thank you to all those who provided suggestions and advice:

Jessica S., Heather C., Meghan M., Morgan C., Branna Y., Julia B., Jess M., Beth A.


Jennifer Aline is a coffee addict, new mom of twins and a passionate freelance writer and author. She has had articles in publications such as the NY Daily News, NY Post, Rochester Magazine and In Good Health Magazine as well as others. Aline received her Bachelor’s Degree in Child and Family Studies from Keuka College and worked in the Human Services field before her two little girls entered her life. Aline now focuses primarily on writing, teaching aerial arts classes in the evenings and, of course, caring for her twin daughters – all while continuously chugging coffee, of course.

  • Jennifer Aline Graham
    Jennifer Aline Graham
  • For Mom

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