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Salon Manicures - When to run a mile!

6 October, 2019 - 01:34pm by - First Lady | 13 Comments

Have you ever noticed you hold your newly manicured hands differently?  Not the "I'm not sure if my nails are wet" hold, rather the "every time I use my hands I must accencuate my mani" hold. There's nothing quite like having your nails done to give you a lift.

But do you know what you should expect from a salon manicure?

The Establishment.

1.  The salon should be spotless.  There's an unwritten rule of the industry - if you have nothing to do, you clean.  All tools should be disinfected between clients.  If the salon doesn't gleam, walk on by.

2.  As with any service that involves direct contact with a client, you should feel comfortable from the moment you walk in.  Check out our article The Role of a Beauty Therapist for more information on this.

3.  Prices for manicures vary dramatically from a regular Beauty Salon to a chain of nail bars.  You can expect to pay around $35 for the latter, and up to $70 for a salon offering a full range of services.  It really depends on the experience you will be happy with, but it is safe to say, you get what you pay for.

The Manicure.

A manicure can take anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half. 

1.  Your manicurist will wash her hands and apply sanitiser to yours.

2.  Any existing nail polish will be removed and your nails will be shaped with a file.  Decision 1 - what shape nail do you prefer?  Round, square, oval, squoval, points? If you're not sure your therapist will be able to help you decide what is best for you.

3.  Cuticle oil or cream will be applied and your cuticles will be gently pushed back.  Decision 2 - Do you want your cuticles trimmed?  It's generally recommended that you don't, unless there is a pressing need. Even the steadiest hand can accidently nick the skin, which will be sore and could lead to an infection.

4.  You will most likely be soaking one hand while the technician works on the other.  Some salons will exfolliate the skin before soaking it.  You shouldn't be soaking for more than 5 minutes, otherwise the nail bed will swell and any nail polish applied with crack as the nail bed dries and contracts.

5.  It's massage time!  Sit back and enjoy the hand massage, which will most likely include reflexology. 

6.  It's time for polish.  Decision 3 - What look do you want to rock?  You'll probably be overwhelmed by the choice of colours!  If you're nervous about a bright shade the French Manicure is the eternal classic - but again ask your Nail Technician for advise.  Many are very skilled and will be able to suggest a fun twist on a classic look, a feature nail or even a little bit of nail art.

7.  You'll probably end up sitting with your hands under a UV light.  UV light helps your nail polish to dry and harden.  You'll probably be under the spotlight for 5 minutes - but you'll want to be careful with your nails for the next few hours.  If you do get a chip in the hours after a manicure, don't be afraid to call the salon.  Many will offer to fix up the nail for you.


The technological advances in the beauty industry increase daily, so look for a salon that is up to date on the services they offer.  Gel polishes that can last for 10 - 14 days are among the latest services many salons now offer.

Do you treat yourself to regular salon manicures? What's your favourite part? And if you haven't taken the plunge - what's stopping you?



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23rd November, 2019

I just do my own nails unless it's a group thing like a Hen's Night. I'm a Nurse and I've seem too many BAD beauty therapy mess-ups, too scared to go near most salons.

8th November, 2019

Oh man!! Do I have a story. I looked at reviews, they also had a good price $30 instead of quotes I got that were $60-$95. I got them done at "professionail". (I will not disclose the location) I went and got my nails done for my wedding ( classic french tip,acrylic) They didn't dust off the excess filings/dust so my nails were dusty knocking. They also put the product on and hard and filed it right back. When I took them off, they had DAMAGED my real nails. I had indentations of where the acrylic was on my nail that's how bad they were damaged. I said "NAILS" not just a nail. They were that damaged that my nails came away from my nail bed. I had to cut my nails right back; wait for them to grow more then cut them right back again because my nails had nothing to hang onto. I got married on the 8th June 2019 and today is 8th November 2019 and they are still not normal. I don't no if I will ever get my nails professionally done again!

5th November, 2019

The last pedicure I had resulted in a bleeding cuticle on my big toe which was quickly dismissed as my fault so never again!

23rd October, 2019

My nails grow nice when pregnant

19th October, 2019

I usually do my nails myself but when we go on holiday I will get a manicure and pedicure. I get a gel polish as it lasts longer so I don't have to worry about my nails for a couple of weeks.

18th October, 2019

I have had my nails done a couple of times and each time ended up wrecking my nails which has weakened them. Won't go to a nail salon again I'm afraid.

10th October, 2019

I’m so slack with mani pedis. I use polish in summer but just don’t have the time to get out for it to be professionally done.

9th October, 2019

I am trained to do them myself. I don't have the disposable income right now for this. My feet and heels are definitely something I need to tend to because I get horrible cracked heels

8th October, 2019

I just love getting my nails done

8th October, 2019

I don't get manicures because it hurts when they push the cuticles back, and the manicurists I've been to haven't been that friendly.

17th October, 2019

If it hurts when they’re pushing your cuticles back, then they’re being too rough and pushing them too far. Some people have naturally high eponychiums, and these shouldn’t be pushed back, as it will break the “seal” between skin and nail

17th October, 2019

... (continued) exposing you to infection. True cuticle cells sit on top of the nail plate, and it’s those dead skin cells that need to be removed before a manicure.

8th October, 2019

I love getting my nails done at a salon though I rarely go nowadays. I do my nails myself they look nice. But there is nothing like getting your nails done for you.

9th October, 2019

Why not? It's a lovely and relaxing experience and your hands look nice afterwards.

8th October, 2019

True, and they do a better job than I can, but I still can't make myself go.

7th October, 2019

Never had my nails done at a salon... but would love to one day if i manage to grow them out nicely.

8th October, 2019

You really should. That feeling after there done and looking fabulous is priceless

11th October, 2019

Hahaha i’m sure it will too =D

7th October, 2019

Good to know.


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