How a bad manicure can put you at risk for HIV — four questions to ask
Manicure in nail salon.
AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses recently published a story about a 22-year-old Brazilian woman who had advanced HIV infection, but not from obvious reasons. Her HIV was traced, 10 years later, to an unsanitary manicure.
What to look for
A California dermatologist concurs that HIV can be transmitted from a manicure if the salon does not take the proper precautions in sterilizing their equipment. So, before you book your next manicure or pedicure, take the time to get answers from your salon to these four important questions:
#1 – How are the tools disinfected?
Asking how the tools are disinfected is just as important as knowing that proper disinfecting is being practiced at your salon. Make sure they are washed in anti-bacterial soap, disinfected with Barbicide (specifically designed to clean and disinfect salons, barbershops and spas), and sterilized under high pressure steam.
#2 – Do the nail technicians use protective gloves?
Gloves protect both the nail technician and her customer from germs and bacteria that bare hands can carry.
#3 – Will they let you bring your own nail polish?
This is the safest way to go, but if they don’t allow outside nail polish, make sure they are using a topical antiseptic and sanitizer that is strong enough to kill germs on the nail bed and the skin surrounding it.
#4 – Is the entire salon clean?
If areas of the salon appear dirty and unsanitary, including the floors and the restrooms, it’s best to walk away. Chances are these unsanitary practices are going on in other areas that will come in direct contact with you.
Don’t take a chance on a dirty salon. Don’t be afraid to ask tough questions. Make sure you are in safe hands!