Sunday, January 27, 2008

Pedi per i piedi

Manolo for the Bride wrote a really good post about manicure/pedicure safety a while back. Most brides get their hands/feet done before their wedding (even if they were previously salon virgins). When I really sit down to think about the whole I feel a little sick to my stomach. I have worked in food service long enough to know that employees have a tendency to get lax about being sanitary, and I can't imagine that it is much different in a lot of salons.

Erlanger recommends mani/pedi fans take the following rules to heart:

1. Ask nail salons about their disinfection practices. Only patronize salons that sterilize their instruments.

2. For instruments that cannot be sterilized, such as nail files and pumice stones, make sure the nail technician uses disposable versions.

3. Patronize salons that use “pipe-less” whirlpools with external impellors that can be easily accessed for thorough cleaning, very similar to physical therapy whirlpool tubs. Hidden tubing cannot be properly drained.

4. Clean, plastic soaking tubs or pans are generally safe and good alternatives to poorly designed whirlpools.

For added safety, you can always bring your own nailcare tools and polish with you to the salon. Don’t walk around with bare feet–bring your own flip flops if the salon doesn’t provide the disposable sort. Make sure your manicurist washes her hands, uses sterilized tools, and thoroughly cleans out foot spas after they’re used. If you voice your concerns and the salon staff balk, they’re not worth your time or money.

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