3 Tips for a safer pedicure

A pedicure at the salon or spa is a great way to relax and pamper feet. However, you could end up with a nasty infection. The American Academy of Dermatology warns against the risks of fungal and bacterial infections from unsanitary tools, contaminated footbaths and poor hygiene practices. Follow these tips for a safer pedicure.

Skip shaving
Don’t get your pedicure done if you have any cuts or scrapes on your feet and legs. The bacteria and fungus living in footbaths and on instruments can enter through open skin and cause an infection. You also shouldn’t shave, wax or use hair removal cream on your legs within 24 hours of getting a pedicure.

Bring your own
To help reduce the risks, bring your own pedicure tools. If tools aren’t properly sterilized or disinfected, bacteria can transfer from person to person. If your salon uses disposable items such as nail buffers and emery boards, be sure you see that they are disposed of after each customer.

Schedule your appointment early
When the salon opens, footbaths are their cleanest. Therefore, you should make an appointment first thing in the morning. While at your appointment, look for dirty floors, shared tools and other signs of poor hygiene. If you see the footbaths being disinfected, check out how long it takes — most disinfectants require 10 minutes or more to work.