With today’s economy, we all know how hard it is to make those Spa appointments without feeling guilty or tapping into your savings. Spa’s can be expensive, and although I feel they can be a great treat, not everyone can afford the cost of a Spa treatment. Spa’s are generally a safe place to get your nails done and have a great serene atmosphere, but it does come at a price, so if you are tight on cash but need your nails done, here is a way to get your hands and feet looking great, with little money and little worry of getting an unsafe Pedicure. You may not get the Spa atmosphere, but you’ll still come out having a fresh Pedicure or Manicure for a fraction of the cost. Being a Nail Technician I know the worry some of us have with going to a “quickie” nail salon, so here are some safe tips in getting your nails done without the worry of infection or fungus.
First, I recommend bringing your own implements. Sally’s Beauty Supply sells kits with all the amenities you’ll need. For around $14.00 you can buy a Pedicure/Manicure set with Nippers, Cuticle Pushers, Clippers and sometimes they will include a file. If not, pick a file off the shelf. Try to get a 100/180 grit. Those last and aren’t too abrasive for natural nails. Pick up an aerosol can of Barbicide or very similar disinfectant as well. You will need this to disinfect your own implements.You can use the liquid Barbicide as well.
Second, do not shave your legs 24 hours prior to getting a pedicure. The open pores can become irritated by soaps and lotions and introduce bacteria if the tub was not cleaned properly. Open pores are an open source for infection. Because many salons aren’t great about sanitizing their tubs due to the quick turn over of clients, it is best to ask that the jets in your tub be left off, this is to stop any dirty bacteria from getting into your water from the previous pedicure. If the jets are not cleaned properly with bleach or a hospital grade disinfectant, then whatever dirty water was in the tub before you, can be flushed right back into your water once the jets are turned back on. The bacteria from the previous pedicure, stays in the tubes of the jets until it is flushed out. If you are waiting for a Pedicure and after someone leaves the chair, you do not see the technician fill the tub, pour bleach or another type of disinfectant in the tub and run the jets for at least 10 minutes, then drain and rinse, then they are not properly sanitizing your tub. Should you even get the pedicure? It is up to you.
Third, You need not feel embarrassed asking a nail technician if he or she will use the implements you provide and leave the jets off. If they care about your health and safety, they should be happy to serve you with or without your own implements. This is your health, so don’t be afraid to protect it. Carry your implements in a size appropriate plastic tupperware container with a secure lid and remember to take them with you after your treatment. When you get home, scrub your implements with anti bacterial dish soap and hot water. You can use an old toothbrush to clean them and then let them air dry. Once they are dry, spray them with your disinfectant and put them in your dry covered container for future use. Files should never be shared but can be washed for your own use and disinfected with your spray so long as your nails are healthy. If you cannot find the aerosol type Barbisol/Barbicide at Sally’s, then get the blue Barbicide or disinfecting type solution. It is recommended you disinfect (immerse) your implements for 5 minutes in a disinfectant solution of part solution and part water, 1 to 10 ratio.1 part solution to 10 parts water, then rinse and dry.
No establishment in California within the Nail industry may never re-use any nail file on more than one person. They are not sanitizable by the laws of state board. If you ever do get your nails done without bringing your own implements, you must ask for a new file and avoid getting your cuticles nipped to prevent infection. Technically, cuticles should never be clipped. It is the skin that grows over the cuticle (Eponychium) that is to be cut, not the cuticle. Cutting cuticles can cause irritation and infection and abnormal nail base. Remember Credo Blades or any blade type implement used to remove callusses is illegal in California. Following these easy steps will increase your odds for a safe and worry free salon visit.