Our step by step guide to trimming your baby's nails

Our step by step guide to trimming your baby's nails

Trimming your little one's nails can be both terrifying & frustrating for all involved, but it doesn't have to be. With the Nail Snail® you can make the whole process much easier. 

With these few tips & tricks up your sleeve, nail trimming can be, quite literally, painless.


Even when your baby is first born, their nails can cause some pretty serious scratches, to themselves, you, their siblings & anyone else within arm's reach. While their nails are generally quite soft, they can also be sharp, & the skin of a newborn is so very delicate. Their motor control is yet to be refined & so their hands often go flailing. With long nails these movements can easily result in nasty cuts & unnecessary pain for your child. Many parents put mittens on their child's hands to avoid this, but this is only a short-term solution, we know that through touch, little ones discover more about their surroundings & in warmer weather it is just not ideal. Keeping those tiny nails trimmed instead with the Nail Snail® Baby Nail Trimmer can make the world of difference.


As they begin exploring the world around them, they will find every little thing you don't want them to; they'll get into the bin no matter where you put it; they'll discover textures through mucky play, their environment is literally littered with hazards. Longer nails provide the perfect hiding place for all those nasty germs gathered on their adventures & where will those little fingers inevitably end up? In their mouth, of course. Or even in yours! Keeping your toddler's nail short & clean can help reduce both the spread of germs & frequency of sickness for everyone.

Even though they're less likely to end up in someone's mouth, your child's toenails are also important to consider. Long toenails can create holes in socks, make shoes uncomfortable & easily scratch others, particularly in summer when shoes are only worn when absolutely necessary! Incorrect trimming often causes painful ingrown toenails so it's important to pay particular attention to those little toes.

Another tip to avoid ingrown toenails is to ensure you cut straight across the toenail. With fingernails, however, it is important to follow the natural curve of the fingernail to avoid any sharp points or jagged edges. The Nail Snail® has a patented, shaped blade makes it easy to cut along the natural curve. 


If you're like most other parents & caregivers out there, cutting nails is not your favourite activity to do with your child & it's likely that the feeling is mutual. It's important to create a space where you are both relaxed about the task ahead. Make sure you choose a time when your little one isn't tired or fidgety & when you're unlikely to have any interruptions.

Bath time often makes the process a little smoother because baby's nails are going to be softer after a bath. Depending on which method you use for cutting nails, though, this could be one of the worst times. If you're someone who bites your child's nails to keep them short, doing this after a bath means it is not only the nail that is soft but also the surrounding skin; tearing of the nail & skin becomes a real possibility.

Baby nail clippers are one of the other most common methods of keeping those nails short but the visibility they allow is quite poor. Especially when baby is fidgeting & wants their hands & feet anywhere except where you want them! Most parents use clippers or scissors & have experienced the pain of cutting their precious little one's skin, ending in tears for both child & parent! The Nail Snail® is a much safer solution & allows you to have excellent visibility. You can see exactly what you are cutting, so you only cut nail & not the soft surrounding skin. 


Our step by step guide

  1. Choose a place & time in your daily routine where you & your little one are as relaxed as possible
  2. Have your child’s fingers or hands pointing away from you. Having them sit in your lap or cradled into your elbow allows for this.
  3. Using the Nail Snail®’s tail, gently clean under each nail.
  4. Holding the shell of the Nail Snail® with the eye prongs facing away from you, place the base of the metal V-shaped blade against the edge of the nail.
  5. Carefully catching the edge of the nail, move the blade forward, following the curve of the fingernail. Repeat for all fingernails.
  6. Using the same technique, trim straight across toenails.
  7. Finish by gently smoothing off any rough edges with the nail file on the underside of the Nail Snail®


You know your baby better than anyone, but there are a few tips might be worth a try if you're struggling to find what works for you.

  • Make sure both you & your baby are comfortable. Put them in a position that they associate with warmth & safety; this will help them to relax.
  • Having something in front of them to hold their attention is useful; their favourite show on television can be ideal (we LOVE Bluey in our house). Be careful, though, not to put anything in front of them that will require them to use their hands, such as an iPad; their hands will not be staying still for long!
  • Ensure you are prepared with the tool you need - the Nail Snail®  & use a steady but firm grip. Have enough light to clearly see what you're doing & involve them in the process; turn it into a game if you can. The child-friendly snail shape makes it easy to turn nail clipping into a fun activity. 
  • Sing the Nail Snail® Song while you're trimming to make it really fun! Sometimes having a treat at the end of it can help as well (a sticker, small toy, or their favourite fruit); that way your child learns to associate behaving during the trimming process with a positive outcome.
  • Fingernails grow four times faster than toenails, so you'll be spending much more time on them. Once you're in the habit of creating a safe & fun experience when trimming their fingernails, moving on to trimming their toenails will be a breeze.

So next time those little nails are getting a bit long, make sure you have the appropriate tool for the task& try these tips & tricks to take the stress out of this essential part of caring for your baby. Trimming baby nails doesn't have to be a scary experience - for anyone! Using the Nail Snail® makes trimming nails fun! 


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