Manicure & Pedicure Safety

Spring is just around the corner, and with the arrival of Spring, comes warmer weather which means that hundreds of locals will be flocking to their nearest salon to get their nails prepped for the sun-filled-open-toed-shoe days. However, choosing a nail salon can be tricky business these days, which is why it is important to do your research carefully and be sure to choose a nail salon that is reputable and has proper safety procedures put in place. “Why?” you may ask? Well, let’s take a look at some of the risks of going to a nail salon.

One of the most common things to happen at a dodgy nail salon is getting an infection. Infections are commonly contracted from dirty tools that have either a) not been disinfected properly or b) haven’t been disinfected AT ALL. Gross. One small nick or cut and you are opening yourself to a plethora of illnesses and bacteria. Even recently shaved or waxed legs can pose a risk as tiny microorganisms can pass through the follicles and into your bloodstream.

If you think that sounds gross, you don’t even want to know what that bacteria can cause, but for the sake of your health, you deserve to know. Staph infections and mycobacteria infections are the frontrunners in a dirty nail salon, as well as various fungal infections. A quick Google Image search of any of these will be enough to urge you to take the proper precautions and choose a reputable nail salon for your next manicure and pedicure.

It’s easy to tell a clean nail salon from a dirty nail salon just by walking in the doors. If you see that the place is dirty or unkempt, or that a nail technician happens to drop a spa tool on the floor and reuse it, it’s a good indicator that this is not the place to go. Get out of there as soon as possible.

Enough of the bad stuff, though. Let’s talk about what makes a nail salon a GOOD nail salon.

There are three levels of decontamination, and if your nail salon hits the third one, then you’ve hit the jackpot. The three levels consist of sanitation, disinfection, and sterilization. Most salons will at least hit the disinfection stage if they’re not using single-use tools. For proper disinfection, salons will use an EPA registered product that is a bactericidal, fungicidal, and virucidal all mixed into one. Tools should be soaked in this product for at least 10 minutes to get the full effect and ready for use on the next client.

Speaking of tools, the tools themselves should be in top condition, free of rust and any other deformities. Buffers and files should be new and never reused on any other clients. Similarly, pumice stones cannot be disinfected, so if it is not a new one, decline the service, or bring your own from home.

If you have any doubts, feel free to ask the salon upfront before your appointment. If they can’t give you an exact answer on how they disinfect their tools or how they go about it, it is time to find a new nail salon.

This article was not meant to completely deter you from getting your mani and pedi, but rather to remind you to make smart, healthy choices. Even if it means paying a little more, you can never put a price on your health.