Avoid pedicure infections with 3 simple steps

A pedicure can hideously disfigure your legs.

Ok, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but pedicures can be dangerous, at least according to one dermatologist’s report.

The report describes a case in which 110 women developed persistent red boils on their legs after having their toe nails done in a nail salon. It turns out that the infected sore were caused by a skin disease called mycobacterial furunuculosis. Further investigation showed that the whirlpool baths the women used were contaminated with Mycobacterium fortuitum, the bacteria that cause this condition.

Two factors made the situation even worse: First, their salon used the throne type footbaths that are mounted to the chair (as opposed to the plain foot baths that can be picked up and washed in a sink.) These throne type baths are more likely to be contaminated because they’re harder to clean. Second, 70% of the women who contracted the disease had shaved their legs prior to their treatment which left them even more vulnerable to attack by the bacteria.

While this condition is treatable with antibiotics, the infection can be tough to get rid of and it can leave the legs seriously scarred. So, to make sure you`re safe out there, here are the Beauty Brains’ tips on how to protect yourself during a pedicure:

1.) Get off the throne

The common denominator in these cases was the throne type footbath. So get off the “throne” and use a plain footbath that is thoroughly washed and disinfected between uses.

2.) Wait until after your pedicure to shave

Since shaving your legs can open up tiny cuts in the skin through which bacteria can enter, you’re much safer if you shave AFTER your pedicure. Remember, shaving was a risk factor for infection in 70% of the patients.

3.) Don’t be promiscous with your choice of salon

The salon in this study had 110 customers who became infected. Knowing the people who run the salon and knowing others who use their services will increase your chances of being tipped off to a problem before you`re the next victim. If you consistently use the same salon you’ll be better off in the long run.

The Brains Bottom Line:

Sure your nails look good with a coat of Orly or OPI. But your legs DON’T look good covered in oozing red sores. So use some salon smarts and protect yourself from pedicure panic.