Baby nail clipper

When you look at your baby's hands, you'll see how adorably cute they are, but sometimes you’ll also notice that those teeny-tiny fingernails need to be trimmed. Scratches on your baby’s face are another telltale sign that it's time to trim. Although cutting those nails may be daunting the first few times you attempt it, this will get easier with practice, and regular trimming will help prevent scratches on your baby’s skin—and yours! We asked thousands of Pampers Parents to vote on their favorite baby nail clippers; here are the results.

Why You Should Trim Your Baby's Nails

Newborn babies and infants may accidentally scratch themselves or others because they haven't yet developed the necessary control over their arm and leg movements.

Once your baby is interacting with other children, it will be especially important to keep her fingernails short, so she doesn't accidentally hurt a fellow little one.

11 Tips for Trimming Your Baby's Nails

Here are some tips and tricks for trimming your baby's fingernails:

  • Get help. Until you get the hang of it, it might help to have someone holding your baby while you trim his nails.

  • Get into a good position. If you don’t have help, try putting your baby in your lap, while you’re sitting in a comfy chair or glider. You'll want to get into a position that gives you good leverage to do the job right. If you find having your baby in your lap doesn't work, try something else, like placing him on a changing table.

  • Pick the right time. You might like to trim your baby's fingernails after a bath when he is calm and relaxed. Or, you might wait until he's asleep in his crib to do the trimming secretly—before he notices!

  • Get the lighting right. You'll want to make sure you can see everything you're doing. So, for example, use a desk lamp that can be directed to your baby’s hands, or cut your baby’s nails in daylight. Trimming your baby’s nails in low light makes it harder for you to see and can lead to an accident.

  • Hold your baby's hand. You'll want to grasp your baby's palm and the finger that you'll be trimming the fingernail of with one hand while you clip using your other hand. This helps ensure you keep the finger nice and steady.

  • Have the right equipment on hand. Use baby nail clippers or a pair of toenail scissors with a blunt tip so that you don't accidentally poke your little one. If you're nervous about using either of these you could simply file your baby's nails with an emery board.

  • Keep the nails short and smooth. Be sure to cut the nails short and file the edges so that they're round and not jagged.

  • Be prepared in case of an accident. No matter how careful you are, you may accidentally cut the tip of your child's finger. Have a sterile gauze pad nearby and use it to apply pressure to the finger to stop the bleeding. Putting a bandage on your baby's finger is a not a good idea because when he put his fingers in his mouth, the bandage might come off and present a choking hazard.

  • Trim often. Your baby's fingernails will grow quickly, especially in the early weeks, so you may need trim at least twice a week. As you get more practiced at it, you’ll be finished before you know it.

  • Do not bite your baby's nails. You may have heard that some parents opt to bite their baby's nails as a way of trimming them, but this is not safe as it can lead to your baby's fingers becoming infected.

  • Don't forget the toenails. Your baby's toenails grow more slowly than his fingernails, so you won't need to trim them as often—once or twice every month will do. In some cases, it may look like your baby has ingrown toenails, but that's because the toenails are so small and soft. However, if the skin around the nail is red, hard, or swollen, then the toenail may be ingrown. In this case, see your baby’s healthcare provider.

7 Best Baby Nail Clippers

More than 4,000 Pampers Parents voted on the best baby nail clippers. Find out what sets each of them apart, and pick the best one for you and your baby. Here are the reviews:

1. Safety 1st Sleepy Baby Nail Clipper

Why pick this one? Pampers Parents chose this as the best nail clipper. When you're using it you don't have to strain to see your baby's little fingernails because a light helps illuminate what you're doing.

Some parents like to trim their baby's nails while the baby is sleeping, and this nail clipper would let you keep the room lights dim, using the light of the clipper to illuminate your baby’s nails. Keep in mind that for safety purposes, we would still recommend using proper lighting when trimming your baby's fingernails.

The clipper itself has curved edges making it easier to reach the corners of the nails. A mini emery board is included in case you need to smooth a jagged edge. The emery board can easily be stored by sliding it into a slot in the nail clippers.

One disadvantage of these nail clippers is that the battery is not replaceable; if it dies, you’re left with no light. Of course, you can still keep using the clippers.

It's lightweight and easy to use. My favorite part is the nail file, which helps smooth out the nails. This was also wonderful to use until I gained enough confidence to use the clippers. PAMPERS PARENT

Highlights: The nail clippers feature an easy-to-grip soft handle, which helps prevent your hands from slipping.

Price*: about $4.94 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ Easy to grip, comfortable to hold ✕ Could be a little sharper
✓ Durable ✕ Wish it were less bulky
✓ Affordable ✕ Hard to clean the clipper

2. Safety 1st Fold-Up Nail Clippers

Why pick this one? What sets this nail clipper apart is the extended, soft-grip handle, which adds a little extra leverage when you're trimming your baby's nails, and may help your hand from slipping.

The clipper itself features a curved edge, which means it gets closer to the shape of your baby's fingernail, helping trim the sharp edges. The clipper also works well for toenails.

It fits comfortably in my hand and is extra safe since the handle has an indented spot for your finger—so it doesn't slip.

PAMPERS PARENT

Highlights: With your purchase you get two nail clippers, which is a great idea, because you never know when you might misplace one. Or, you can keep one in your diaper bag and one at home in your medicine cabinet.

Price*: about $4.99 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ Perfect size✕ Could have a bigger handle to suit bigger hands
✓ Inexpensive✕ Sometimes the clipper sticks together
✓ Easy to use✕ A light or a magnifying glass could be a useful addition

3. NailFrida The SnipperClipper Set by Fridababy

Why pick this one? There's no more guessing where to cut with this nail clipper from NailFrida since there's a little spyhole designed into the clipper. This makes it easier to see if you've positioned the clipper correctly over the fingernail, making it less likely you’ll accidentally nick the skin.

Also included is an s-shaped nail file that was designed for use on tiny fingers. The unique shape makes it easy to follow the contours of your baby's fingers when filing away any jagged edges.

We still recommend having really good lighting when trimming your baby's fingernails, as there's no sense in having a spy hole unless you can actually see what you're doing.

Highlights: The blades of the nail clipper are designed to act like scissors in that they're curved and overlap as you cut, making it potentially safer, easier, and quieter. If you're accustomed to using scissors, this feature might appeal to you.

Price*: about $12.99 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ It's easy to see the nail you're cutting ✕ Wished there was a light
✓ Ergonomic shape ✕ Not a fan of the curved blade
✓ Easy to use ✕ Could be less expensive
✓ Like the curved nail file

4. The First Years American Red Cross Deluxe Nail Clipper with Magnifier

Why pick this one? What could make it easier to clip your baby's nails? How about a magnifying glass? This nail clipper features a 4x magnifying glass that flips into position so that you can better see what you're clipping.

The nail clipper's handle is oversized and ergonomically shaped to make it easier to grip when you're cutting your baby's fingernails.

This nail clipper was recommended to me by another mom. It's so easy to use and cuts very smoothly. It makes clipping my baby’s nails a little less stressful. PAMPERS PARENT

Highlights: The nail clipper is officially licensed by the American Red Cross.

Price*: about $2.99 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ Thick and easy-to-grip handle ✕ Magnifying glass isn't that helpful
✓ Easy to use ✕ Wish it included a nail file
✓ Good price ✕ Could be slightly bigger

5. Safety 1st Clear View Nail Clipper

Why pick this one? This is the second magnifying-glass-style nail clipper on this list. It features 5x magnification (a step up from the other magnifying nail clipper on this list) to allow you to better see your baby's fingernail when clipping. The magnifying glass is hinged so it can easily be directed right over your baby's fingernail when needed, and then folded back in place when not in use.

Pampers Parents seemed to prefer the magnifying glass of this nail clipper versus that of the First Years American Red Cross Deluxe Nail Clipper.

The clipper itself has curved edges so you can get closer to your baby's fingernails and ensure you've trimmed the corners, too.

The magnifying glass is so helpful. I wear glasses and still needed that extra help so I wouldn't hurt my baby. PAMPERS PARENT

Highlights: The handle is easy to grip with ridges to ensure your fingers don't slip when using the clippers.

Price*: about $7.96 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ Really like the big handle✕ Could be less bulky
✓ The magnifying glass is very helpful✕ Wish it had a light
✓ Very easy to use✕ Hard to clean the clipper part

6. Little Martin’s Drawer Baby Nail Trimmer File with Light

Why pick this one? Instead of clipping or cutting your baby's fingernails, how about filing them away? With this battery-operated electric nail file, you can do just that. It has a lightweight and compact design as well as two speeds and a rotating head to shorten nails with ease.

There is a LED light to make it easier for you to see while you're trimming your baby's nails. At the same time, the file is very quiet so it won't startle or wake up your baby if you're trimming her nails during a nap.

Unfortunately, the two AA batteries needed for the trimmer are not included with your purchase, so you'll have to buy those separately.

I’ve nipped my daughter with nail clippers before I decided to switch to this nail trimmer. It makes my life so much easier. It’s a must! PAMPERS PARENT

Highlights: This electric nail file comes with six different filing heads: three for babies depending on the age (to correspond with your baby's toughening nails as she gets older), and three for adult nails. These extra heads may appeal to you as everyone in your household will be able to use the product for years to come.

Price*: about $22.96 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ Easy to use ✕ Could have more replacement heads
✓ No risk of cutting your baby ✕ The case doesn't do a good job of storing all the attachments, which can fall out easily
✓ Less scary for you ✕ Batteries deplete fast

7. ARRNEW 4-in-1 Baby Grooming Kit

Why pick this one? Rounding out our list of the best nail clippers, this one is actually more like a complete baby grooming kit. The set contains clippers, scissors, a file, and tweezers. You can continue to use this grooming kit into toddlerhood.

The four-in-one set also comes in a cute bear case that you can store everything in. It's available in several pastel colors, so it could look good as a decoration in your baby’s nursery; just keep it out of your little one's reach at all times.

The nail clipper and scissors features curved edges and rounded tips, ensuring your baby's safety. The ergonomic plastic handles make it easy for you to hold and help prevent your fingers from slipping.

This kit offers such great variety for my needs. My very favorite thing is how well organized they are within the adorable little bear case! PAMPERS PARENT

Highlights: If you don't buy it for your own baby, this set would actually make a really cute baby shower gift for a dear friend's baby.

Price*: about $12.99 on Amazon.com

Pampers Parents pros and cons:

✓ Has all the tools that you'll need ✕ Wished the nail file was a better quality
✓ The scissors are very easy to use ✕ Wished the case wasn't so bulky
✓ Great price

The Bottom Line

Choosing the right nail clipper for your child isn't rocket science. But knowing that you have one that other Pampers Parents approved can help make your decision a little easier. Any of the clippers, trimmers, and grooming sets on this list can help you safely trim your baby's fingernails for scratch-free cuddles with your little one.

Recall Notice

Before buying a product, always check that it’s approved and hasn’t been recalled on sites like the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

*Prices are correct at the time of writing.

How We Got These Results
We surveyed thousands of parents in the Pampers Community and asked them to choose the products they love the most, and to share their views on specific products and product categories. Based on the survey responses, we have taken the top product picks and added our own research to create this article. The aim is to help you choose the right product for you and your family. We might receive commissions on purchases made from the links in this article, but the products featured are the Pampers Community’s top choices.