Baby nail clippers are fingernail clippers made specifically for trimming the nails of infants and toddlers. Usually, they have a narrower mouth than regular nail clippers and are not as sharp. The narrower mouth makes it easier to clip the small nails of a baby. Many baby nail clippers come with additional features like an ergonomic handle grip, integrated light, and magnifying glass to make trimming a baby's nails easier.
Newborn, infant, and toddler finger nails grow very quickly. Although the nail itself is somewhat thinner and more pliable than an adult nail, it can still cause scratches on the skin and eyes. Newborns are especially prone to scratching themselves because their muscle control is still developing. Keeping the nails trimmed short and smooth is the only way to keep an infant from accidentally scratching themselves.
Since a baby's nails are so small, many adults find it hard to trim the nails with regular clippers. The edges are often too thick or too wide to slide under the nail and accurately trim it. The magnifying glass, integrated light, and ergonomic handle all make the job easier for the adult.
Trimming a baby's nail is difficult when he or she is awake. For infants, the lack of muscle controls causes twitching and other unpredictable movements that can result in accidental clipping of skin around the fingernail. Toddler's nails are even more difficult to trim because toddlers are larger, stronger, and usually reluctant to sit still long enough for all ten toenails and ten fingernails to be trimmed. Many adults trim nails while the child is asleep.
There are many styles of baby nail clippers in a range of prices. Most are fairly inexpensive, and some are more practical than aesthetically pleasing. One type of baby nail clippers look identical to adult clippers, except in size and with the exclusion of the folding emery board which is integrated into most adult nail clippers. Many manufacturers make baby nail clippers in bright colors or shaped like animals, but usually the whimsical design doesn't have any effect on the clipper's practical use.
A similar tool is a pair of baby nail scissors. These have a rounded tip to avoid accidentally puncturing skin while precisely trimming the nail. An emery board can also be used to smooth and shorten baby nails to the desired length. This is a popular method, since there is no risk of accidentally cutting the baby's skin.