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Can You Get A Toenail Fungus From Pedicure?

If you’ve ever had a pedicure, you know that it often comes with a sense of relaxation and feeling pampered. But can you get a toenail fungus from pedicure?

I’ll share what exactly a toenail fungus is, the causes of it, and whether getting a pedicure might increase your chances of catching it. Keep reading to learn more…

Can You Get A Toenail Fungus From Pedicure?

Can You Get A Toenail Fungus From Pedicure?

There is a possibility of contracting a toenail fungus from a pedicure if the salon does not follow proper hygiene practices.

According to a study, about 52 percent of participants who visited a salon three times a year experienced fungal infection symptoms such as whitish to yellow discoloration, distorted shape, and dark coloration of nails.

To prevent this, it is essential to pre-screen your pedicure salon to ensure that they use thoroughly cleaned instruments sterilized with hospital-grade disinfectants.

When selecting a pedicure salon, pay close attention to their cleaning procedures and practices.

While waiting for your turn, observe whether the salon technician uses new instruments for each client and appropriately cleans and disinfects their tools after each use.

If you are unsure, feel free to ask the nail salon about their cleaning procedures and whether they use an autoclaving process to sterilize surgical tools, which is the standard method used by hospitals.

If you have an open wound on your foot, it is best to avoid putting it into a foot bath or bowl, as microorganisms present in these can penetrate through the cut and cause infections.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also warns against cuts on the skin during a pedicure, as bacteria can enter the body, leading to internal skin infections.

Even the nail polish used in the salon can be a source of infection, as the brush inside has likely touched numerous other toes.

If picking a polish from the salon’s offerings, avoid half-full or worn-out bottles that indicate frequent use.

Be cautious about cuticle trimming by the nail technician, as it can remove a protective layer of skin and leave it vulnerable to germs.

You can request pushing the skin back instead of removing it to prevent potential infections.

Pre-Screening Pedicure Salons: Tips to Avoid Infection

Going for a pedicure at a salon is a relaxing and pampering experience that many people enjoy.

However, it is crucial to ensure that the salon you choose maintains a high standard of cleanliness and hygiene to avoid the risk of developing a nail fungal infection.

Here are some tips on pre-screening pedicure salons to help keep your feet happy and healthy.

One of the first steps to take is to visit the salon before booking an appointment. This will allow you to gauge their cleanliness and sterilization practices.

Pay attention to how the instruments used on clients are cleaned and sterilized. Ideally, they should be thoroughly disinfected using a hospital-grade disinfectant before and after each use.

Foot baths or bowls should be cleaned with hospital-grade liquid disinfectant between clients. If you are uncertain about their cleaning procedures, do not hesitate to ask the staff for more information.

Cleaning Procedures at Pedicure Salons: What to Look For

Cleaning Procedures at Pedicure Salons: What to Look For

When going to a pedicure salon, it is crucial to ensure that they follow proper cleaning procedures to avoid any potential infections, such as toenail fungus.

One of the first things to look for in a pedicure salon is how they clean and sanitize their foot baths.

Many salons use whirlpool baths, which can harbor bacteria and fungus if not cleaned properly between clients.

It is good practice for salons to drain the water after each client, then fill the baths with disinfectant for at least 10 minutes before draining it and refilling it with water for the next person.

Alternatively, some salons may use individual bath liners that are removed after each client or glass bowls that they clean between clients.

Certain pedicure practices, such as the removal of ingrown toenails and calluses, should be avoided in a salon setting.

Ingrown toenail removal is a surgical procedure that requires the expertise of a podiatrist, and attempting to remove a callus with a cheese grater-like tool can tear the skin and put individuals, especially those with diabetes or poor circulation, at risk of infection.

Instead, opt for gentle methods to address these issues, such as filing nails straight across and requesting the use of soft tools like brushes or sandpaper to smooth the skin.

Avoiding Foot Baths or Bowls if You Have an Open Wound

To avoid infections and enjoy a safe pedicure experience, it is crucial to be cautious about foot baths and bowls, especially if you have an open wound on your foot.

Open wounds can include bug bites, scratches, and cuts, which make your skin vulnerable to infections.

As mentioned above, before you place your feet into a foot bath or bowl at a pedicure salon, ensure that the salon follows proper sterilization and disinfection procedures for their instruments and equipment.

The Dangers of Too Much Trimming and Rough Tools

The dangers of too much trimming during a pedicure cannot be overstated, as expert podiatrists warn against this practice.

Trimming the cuticles aggressively not only leads to a risk of infection, but can also cause pain and inflammation.

The cuticle serves as an anchor for the nail to the skin, and tampering with it can potentially lead to bacterial infections.

Overzealous pedicurists may use little scissors to push back and trim the cuticle, opening up the body to infection.

Another common mistake made during pedicures is cutting the nails too aggressively on the sides, which can lead to painful ingrown toenails that break the skin and sometimes require surgical treatment.

To avoid these problems, it is essential for pedicurists to cut the nails either straight across or with a slight curve, but not down into the corners of the nail.

This ensures that the nails remain healthy and free from infections. If you suspect that your pedicurist is being too aggressive with their trimming techniques, don’t hesitate to speak up and express your concerns. 

Personal Pedicure Kit: A Safer Option

A personal pedicure kit can be a safer option for those who are concerned about getting a toenail fungus from a pedicure.

This can be especially helpful for individuals who frequently visit nail salons and want to ensure proper hygiene and prevent any possible spread of fungus or infections.

By using their own pedicure kit, clients can have peace of mind knowing that the tools being used on their nails have not been in contact with other customers’ nails and thus reduce the risk of cross-contamination.

One of the advantages of having a personal pedicure kit is the ability to maintain and sanitize the tools regularly, in line with the client’s own cleanliness standards.

This typically involves cleaning the instruments with soap and water after each use, followed by sterilization using alcohol or bleach solution.

This consistent cleaning routine ensures that the tools remain germ-free and safe to use during pedicure sessions.

To further enhance the safety of personal pedicure kits, clients can opt to bring their own nail polish, nail polish remover, and other consumables that are typically used during pedicure sessions.

This eliminates the chances of sharing products with other salon-goers, which can create an additional layer of protection against the spread of infections.

Cuticle Trim: Beware of Removing the Protective Layer

Cuticle Trim: Beware of Removing the Protective Layer

Before trimming your cuticles, salon staff should first ask if you have any existing skin conditions such as athlete’s foot or an active infection on your feet.

Proper hygiene practices should also be followed by both the customer and the salon staff before and during the pedicure session.

It is important not to remove the protective layer of skin (cuticles) too close to the nail bed because this can lead to bacterial and nail fungus or nail infections, as well as cause inflammation and pain around the nails.

Lastly, double check that all tools used are properly sterilized between customers or disposable items should be used instead. 



To sum it up, the answer to the question “Can you get a toenail fungus from pedicure?” is yes, if proper hygiene practices are not followed.

To prevent this, pre-screen your salon by looking for signs of cleanliness and sterile equipment and ask about their cleaning procedures.

Avoid cuts on your skin during the pedicure session and don’t hesitate to use a personal pedicure kit for an extra layer of protection.

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