Pedicure Step-By-Step

  1. Soak: Soak clients feet in warm water with anti-bacterial soap or a professional footbath additive. This serves the purpose of softening the skin, cuticles and nails, as well as cleansing the foot.
  2. Polish Removal: Apply rubber gloves. Remove one foot from the water (right foot as they face you), and place it on the towel in your lap. Pat foot dry quickly and cover it (except toes) with the towel to prevent it from getting cold. Remove polish from the toes of this foot, while continuing to soak the other foot.
  3. Shorten Nails: Still working on this first foot, use toenail clippers to shorten nails to appropriate length. Cut straight across.
  4. Repeat For Left Foot: Return right foot to footbath, and repeat steps 2 and 3 with the left foot: remove polish and shorten nails.
  5. Exfoliate: Return left foot to water. Remove right foot and set it in your lap on towel as before, however you do not need to dry the foot. Apply gritty exfoliation product of your choice; you may use a professional product or make your own from a mix of hand soap and/or oil with salt (or sugar if preferred, it's a little gentler, and not as gritty). Rub and massage in the exfoliant, paying special attention to bottoms and sides of feet, especially any calluses or rough spots.
  6. Foot File: Continuing with the right foot, use a foot file or pumice to further work on any rough spots to further soften the skin and reduce calluses. You may leave the exfoliant on the foot while using the file, unless the client’s foot is cold, then wipe some of the excess with the towel.
  7. Repeat For Lelf Foot: Return right foot to water. Remove left foot and repeat steps 5 and 6 above: exfoliate and foot file. Then place back in the water. The following steps may seem a littlt out of order, but you will see that ultimately sequence saves "down" time for the nail tech.
  8. Moisturize RT Foot: Rinse and pat right foot to dry. Rub in oil. Next put on cream, and apply cuticle remover cream to toes.(If paraffin is available, you would use it here and continue) Wrap feet in plastic liners or plastic wrap. Wrap with warm towel or heated booties.
  9. Moisturize And Massage LT Foot: Rinse and pat dry left foot. Apply oil, and then cream. Do massage of this foot and ankle. Apply cuticle remover cream to toes, Then wrap up in liners and either paraffin dip,warm towels or booties.
  10. Massage RT Foot: Remove wraps and liners from right foot, then massage foot.Remove liners from other foot. Wrap each foot in a dry towel, only exposing the toes. (The towels you used to wrap in the previous step can be used again in this step provided they aren't too wet.) OIl and creams should all have been massaged and soaked in, however, if some still remains, wipe excess with towel, especially from toes.
  11. Cuticles: Push back cuticles gently with cuticle stick or metal pusher. Never cut cuticles.
  12. Shape Nails: File nails straight across. File the corners just enough so they aren't sharp or catch on their hose. Don't file them round! (Another option is to shape the nails before the moisturizing treatment.)
  13. Buff: Smooth nail surface nails with a block buffer.
  14. Shine: Use a 3-way buffer to shine the nails. Black, white, gray is the order! Polish is optional after this step!
  15. Wash Nails: Use soap and water to remove oil. Put on toe-separaters or pedicure sandals, etc.
  16. Dehydrate nail surface with nail prep. Pour some on a paper towel and wipe on nails. Scrub it in to remove any residual oil.
  17. Base Coat: Apply clear base coat. 1 coat, very thinly. Let dry.
  18. Nail Polish: Apply 1st coat of colored polish. If time permits, let dry a minute or 2. (You could start clean-up of the foot-bath and implements at this time.)
  19. Second Coat: Apply 2nd coat of polish and let dry a minute or 2 again for best results.
  20. Top Coat: Apply top coat polish. Sit still and let nails dry! If you have a pedicure polish dryer, assist her into the unit.
  21. Cure: Apply oil or quick dry to nails to help prevent "dents" and smudges after drying.
Some Optional Extras to Add:

  • Add milk to the footbath this gives the benefits of the AHA's in milk. A can of evaporated or condensed milk added to the bath works nicely.
  • Also, some epsom salts added to the water are wonderful for aching feet, and help reduce puffiness.
  • If you don't have paraffin or heated booties, then placing the wrapped feet on an electric heating pad gives the treament added benefit!
  • Fresh flower petals sprinkled on top of the water are a nice touch.