Unlike our parents and grandparents who may have smoked while pregnant, had a martini or three, and *gasp* eaten processed foods, moms-to-be these days are much more cautious about what they put in and on their bodies while they're gestating. Part of this is simply because we know a lot more about the safety (or lack thereof) of various chemicals. Nail polish especially, which historically contains nasty things like formaldehyde and toluene that can cause birth defects, is a product that has been deemed a thing to avoid during pregnancy. However, many nail polish brands have been revamped over the last few years to be "safer," and the so-called "Three-Free" classification became more common.
Three-Free means the polish doesn't contain formaldehyde, dibutyl phthlate (DBP), or toluene. Lots of commercial brands are three-free now: butter London, Deborah Lippmann, OPI and many more. But you still have to do your homework, and it's not always obvious if a product is "safe" when you go to hunt for ingredient lists. NBC in Los Angeles reports today that some products used in California nail salons that claim to be free of toxins are actually mislabeled. Scary. What's a mommy-to-be--especially one craving hot pink nails--to do?
Enter Knocked Up Nails, a product which caught our eye for being touted as "Maternity Safe" nail polish and for sporting some absolutely ridiculous color names.
Going where no nail polish has gone before, colors like 18 K Gold Crown(ing), I Earned a Little Blue Box, O-Blue-GYN, and Mint Chip at Midnight (Ed note: At least she didn't name a color "Placenta"), we knew we had to have a chat with the line's founder Ashley Judge, who also owns a company called AlwaysFits.com, a quirky gift site that has an entire category dedicated to mustaches. Here's what she had to say about her nail polish, celebrity collabs, and why she thinks her nail polish line is safer than others:
Fashionista: What inspired you to start the line? Ashley Judge: As a lover of all things nails and cosmetics, I’d been following the increasing volume of stories over the past few years about which chemicals to avoid, particularly when you’re pregnant. It became a headache to keep track of which major nail polish lines were finally removing which chemicals. At times there can be a lack of transparency, and I just wanted there to be a polish line that said ‘Hey, expecting-mama: I’m safe! I’m for you, and you can give Google a rest on at least one maternity topic!’ There are several brands of nail polish that are "three free." How is yours different/safer? We applaud the other three-free lines. We’ve taken it one step further, by eliminating camphor as well, and becoming “four free”. Additionally, our line cuts to the chase and gives expecting-mamas peace of mind that our polish is definitely for them, while also making them giggle with our fun, polish names. Who came up with the color names? (They are hilarious!) I named all of the polishes, and if I could find a career where I could just name silly things all day long, I would do it in a heartbeat. It was a blast! How did you choose these colors for the first collection? I wanted colors that were fun and on trend. Sometimes safe products mean safe hues as well, and that’s not as fun. We have some lovely pinks and reds, but I wanted to dive right into the crèmes and the fun, trendy colors like mint green and some awesome foils. Will you do new colors every season? During our launch year we may not follow a seasonal schedule, but we will be listening to our customers' wish-lists and adding new colors to our collection as often as possible. There are tons of celebrities having babies now. Any celeb collaborations in the future? Who would be your dream celeb collab? I was a baby with glasses, so when I saw a picture last week of Jennifer Garner and her daughter, both clad in adorable glasses, it definitely put Jennifer Garner at the top of my mommy list. Plus, her husband is from Boston! As for dream collaborations, I’d selfishly choose one of the fabulous celebrity mama entrepreneurs, so I could soak up some amazing tips and advice from them simultaneously! Like Jessica Simpson, Rachel Zoe or Nicole Richie. And heck, while we’re dreaming, let’s add Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce to that list! I love all mamas that rule the boardroom.