Maybe you’re a regular at the nail salon, or have decided to treat yourself for the holidays — whatever the reason, you should keep certain foot care practices in mind to avoid exposure to foot fungus. Luckily nail salons take many precautions to avoid athlete's foot infection (AKA tinea pedis), which are even more effective when combined with adequate personal foot care practices. Here we’ll be sharing our top athlete’s foot prevention tips, our guide to foot care, and how to avoid getting foot fungus from the nail salon.
Foot Fungus from Nail Salons
You probably know that your local nail salon provides multiple pedicures every day, but what might surprise you is that some nail salons use the same tools and tubs for all the customers that come into their shop.
While you’d hope that these tools and specialized equipment are thoroughly cleaned between customers, it’s unfortunately not always the case! Of course, most nail salons follow rigorous hygiene rules, but some salons neglect these procedures and leave their customers at risk of skin infections.
It’s also true that those with an athlete’s foot infection may be even more likely to get a pedicure, since as you may know, athlete’s foot can sometimes develop into an unsightly nail fungus which gives the nails a yellowing appearance. Those looking to make those yellow nails pretty again, may think that a pedicure would do the trick to hide their discolored toenails.
That said, if you have athlete’s foot it’s important to avoid places like nail salons where you may pass the contagious foot fungus onto someone else.
Though some people may not know this, and they continue to have a regular pedicure despite their athlete’s foot infection. What’s more, if nail salons are not properly disinfected, the foot fungus can stick around and easily be transferred from one person to another.
The combination of some salons not following basic hygiene rules and other infected people continuing their salon visits makes exposure to the foot fungus much more likely.
Go to a Nail Salon You Trust
The best way to avoid foot infection from a nail salon is to go to a nail salon you trust. Once you have a local nail salon that you trust and visit frequently, it’s best to stick to it and avoid taking risks with unknown nail salons.
Get to know the person that does your nails and the procedures they use to disinfect instruments and surfaces that come into contact with customers. That way you can be sure that each time you visit, the person attending your feet has taken the time to properly disinfect their tools before doing your pedicure.
When you visit a nail salon for the first time, take note of the foot care and hygiene procedures being used. Be sure that all instruments and shared surfaces are being disinfected. Don’t be afraid to ask questions either — your foot care and preventing foot fungus infections should be the nail salon’s number one priority.
If you’re unsure about the salon’s procedures or something just seems a little off, it’s best not to take any chances and go to a nail salon where you feel more comfortable instead.
Foot Care Tips at Home
Caring for your feet is just as important at home as it is at the nail salon. While your feet may look perfect following that pedicure, you should still follow a good foot care routine at home to keep them looking and feeling healthy.
Here are our top home foot care tips:
• Wash your feet with warm water and mild soap in the morning and evening. Pay close attention to the spaces between your toes and the soles of your feet. Read more about foot washing tips for athlete’s foot prevention.
• Wear lightweight socks made from natural fibers. These socks will help ensure airflow and prevent too much moisture from building up around your feet.
• Don’t wear the same pair of socks more than once. Although sometimes it’s tempting to wear the same pair of socks if you’ve only worn them for a few hours, the build-up of sweat can encourage the fungus to reproduce. Always wash your socks in between uses and ensure you have enough pairs so that you can change them after wearing for the day.
• Wear open-toe shoes or walk barefoot while you’re at home and you’re not dealing with an athlete’s foot infection. This way you can give your feet a break from socks and footwear and allow them to breathe.
• Do your own at-home pedicure. Whether you make regular trips to the salon or not, it’s important to care for your feet and toenails at home. Trim your toenails regularly by cutting them in a straight line and remove dead skin with a pumice stone.
A trip to the nail salon should improve your overall foot health and be a pleasant experience - it definitely shouldn’t cause you to worry about an athlete’s foot infection. Remember, if you already have an athlete’s foot infection, complete a full treatment with Silka Ⓡ Antifungal Cream before heading to the salon for a pedicure.