Photo Credit: Rocstar/Katrina/Flynet
I slather my girls with sunblock 365 days of the year, insist they ask to be excused before leaving the table, and have stripped the house of every single cylindrical, windpipe-size object. Still, plenty of folks would call me an appalling, indulgent mother because I not just occasionally, but regularly, paint their tiny finger and toe nails. Sometimes I even pony up $8 a piece for a fancy salon “polish change” when we’re on vacation or when leaving them at home would cost as much in babysitter fees.
My girls are now 6 and 8 and I've been doing this since they could say the words, "me too!" I never even gave the practice a second thought until I read a sweet little piece about celebrity toddlers -- including 2 year olds Vivenne Jolie-Pitt and Zuma Rossdale (yes, we're talking about Gwen Stefani's younger son) -- doing the mini-mani thing. It was followed, of course, by the typical commentary crossfire, with readers alternately deeming paint on the pint-size crowd adorable, weird, fun, ridiculous, creepy, curious, and horrific.
I had no idea this was even an issue for people, honestly. First of all, as my daughters’ live-in female role model, it’s natural for them to want to do what I do. (And no, I don’t let them shave their legs or drink wine with dinner.) And frankly, sometimes wet nails are the only thing that can get them to sit still for twenty minutes, a point which I think bears considering. If they were boys, I still wouldn’t have a problem with it, as long as their slightly old-fashioned dad was in another time zone.
Trust me, it’s not like I let my daughters tart around in heels and eyeliner. I’ve publically expressed my outrage here at iVillage over padded bikinis for tweens and pole dancing classes for preschoolers, and my girls understand that you don’t wear “the kind of underwear that goes up your butt” until you are married. But we’re not talking about a tattoo here, for crying out loud (although since I have two of those, you may not consider me the arbiter of reason here either). We’re talking about nail polish, which last time I checked can be removed with a swipe of cotton.