Your local nail salon could be keeping some dirty secrets from you. Here are a few things podiatrists say you should know before you book your next mani-pedi:

  • No matter how fancy the salon is – it still could be crawling with germs and dangerous bacteria. A recent study found that 75 percent of salons don’t follow government disinfectant protocols. For example, salons commonly substitute cheaper, counterfeit cleaning products to sanitize their tools. Like using Windex instead of the powerful disinfectant Barbicide.
  • You could have a cut even if you’re not bleeding. Breaks in the skin can be microscopic. And you could have a cut, scratch, hangnails, an insect bite, paper cut, or a split cuticle – and that puts you at a high risk for an infection from viruses, and germs.
  • Start thinking of footbaths as boil baths! A C-D-C study found that the majority of salon whirlpool baths contain bacteria that can cause blistering boils and rashes. And it's practically impossible to pin the blame on a dirty salon – because it can take up to four months after a pedicure for you to develop boils.
  • eware of being talked into a callus removal treatment! It’s a popular service that costs about $10 and leaves you with super soft feet. But experts say if you're an athlete – especially a runner – don’t do it! That’s because thick calluses help protect your feet from injury. If you really want to do something about your calluses, just let them use a pumice scrub on your heels instead. But never let a manicurist cut or shave them off – that’s a recipe for a nasty infection. Not to mention, the more you cut, the thicker the calluses will grow back.