Happy Feet The ins and outs of pedicures in Park City
July 3, 2007
Ah, summer in the mountains. Biking, golfing, hiking and tennis — Parkites sure do put their feet through the paces. Not to worry, though. Park City salons and spas offer a variety of pedicures to pamper your tootsies. This summer, celebrate flip-flop season with freshly painted toes looking up at you. Your active feet will thank you!
Considered a luxury by some and a necessity by others, pedicures provide a wide array of benefits. Parkite Teri Beckner loves pedicures because, "it’s almost like you can’t have cake without having frosting. If you have flip-flops on, a pedicure is like the frosting on the cake," says Beckner.
In addition to neatly trimmed nails and pretty polish, pedicures can be therapeutic to sore and tired feet. According to Cherish Tharpe, Master Aesthetician with Marc Raymond’s Discovery Spa, "just having your feet touched and taking care of your whole body is worth the treatment. It makes a difference when you walk, run or hike. Clients leave feeling more relaxed, particularly after a good foot massage that hits the pressure points."
The first step in the pedicure process is soaking the feet in warm water in a stand-alone bowl or a recirculating foot bath. The soak is followed by "foot maintenance," which includes filing the bottom of the feet to remove dry skin, cleaning the cuticles and trimming the toenails. A standard pedicure then includes a foot and calf massage — can you say heavenly? — using a generous application of moisturizer. Polish is the last step, applied with a base coat, two coats of color and a quick drying top coat. The benefit of a professional pedicure versus one of the "at home" variety is that the polish often lasts longer.
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In addition to the process described above, many salons offer additional treatments, some of which are included in the price of a pedicure. According to Tharpe, "exfoliation is important because it breaks down dead skin cells, and helps with lymph node drainage. Plus it feels good!"
Exfoliation uses a foot scrub made of sugar or salt to help cleanse skin cells from feet and calves. "Enzyme based scrubs, such as papaya or orange/honey, are best since they do this naturally," says Tharpe. "The result is silky soft feet that redefine smoothness."
Another treatment is a paraffin wax, which can be an added cost. True believers swear by its rejuvenating effects, like Parkite Michelle Fogarty, who gets regular pedicures every four weeks. "Now that it’s summer and your feet are in flip-flops everyday in this dry climate, the paraffin wax really helps keep them moisturized," says Fogarty. The treatment involves dipping your feet into a tub of heated wax and allowing the wax to coagulate around your feet. Pedicurists then remove the wax (without rinsing), which adds extra moisture to the skin.
An important part of any pedicure is filing the feet to remove dry skin instead of razoring or sanding. Master Aesthetician, Tharpe says, "I personally think the only person that should be razoring feet is a professional podiatrist. If used incorrectly a razor can take off too much skin and can open you up to cracking and infection." While some clients request a razor to remove a callus, Tharpe contends that, "calluses protect feet and razoring them can make one rebound and come back faster and thicker." Instead of using a razor, Tharpe uses a file to remove dead skin from the bottom of the feet, which is a gentler and equally effective technique.
One thing to be mindful of when selecting a salon for a pedicure is the importance of sterility. Foot and nail infections can result from instruments and recirculating foot baths that are not disinfected properly. Some salons assign patrons their own box of sterilized instruments, which are disinfected after each visit and labeled with the client’s name.
According to the EPA, "a foot spa should be disinfected between each customer, and nightly. The disinfectant needs to work for the full time listed on its label, typically 10 minutes." Proper cleaning reduces the build up of bacteria in the foot spa system. An alternative to recirculating foot spas — which admittedly feel like a hot tub for your feet! — are individual bowls that are disinfected after every visit. In addition to proper disinfecting techniques, prospective clients should look for clean salons that use only fresh polish.
In terms of cost, pedicures in Park City range from $25 to $85, depending on the salon and services included. Most last 30-45 minutes with some of the more involved treatments lasting up to 60 minutes. Often there is a direct correlation between the length of the appointment and the cost. Less expensive pedicures are generally shorter in duration while higher priced pedicures include more treatments and a more leisurely appointment.
Things to Consider
Prior to booking an appointment, phone salons to ensure your preferred services are part of the pedicure package and determine pricing and time. Confirm that the person performing the pedicure is a certified nail professional. The brand of polish often makes a difference in the longevity of your pedicure, so inquire over the phone as to what brand the salon uses. OPI and Essie are high quality polishes that offer a rainbow of colors with creative names such as "Cha-Ching Cherry" or "Ballet Slippers." Consider taking your own bottle of polish, which guarantees the color you desire and ensures you have it at home for touch-ups. Beauty Zone in Snow Creek Plaza, which can be reached at 435-655-8444, is a great source for quality polish. Make sure to wear your own flip-flops so that the pedicurist can easily slip them on during the drying process. Then sit back, relax and enjoy!
Bullet Box: Where to Find Pedicures in Park City
Align Spa: 435.647.9300
California Nails: 435.575.2004
Eagle Nails: 435.649.1668
Gazebo Hair Salon: 435.649.9501
Grand Summit: 435.615.8035
Hotel Park City: 435.940.5080
Marc Raymond Salons and Spas: 435.647.0500
Mountain Body Spa: 435.655.9342
Nails LaBelle/Turiya: 435.658.5374
Neon Nails: 435.649.3431
Papillon Spa: 435.655.2266
Salon Park Avenue: 435.647.0707
Stein Eriksen: 435.645.6475
Tip & Toe Nails (formerly Lee Nails): 435-655.9080
Vie Retreat: 435.649.6363