Choosing a safe nail salon

Look out for the red flags!

  1. Does the salon have a chemical smell?
  2. Are the same nail files and tools used on multiple customers?
  3. Are education certificates displayed in visible sight?
  4. Are the working surfaces clean and dust free?
  5. Were you asked to wash your hands?
  6. Did they spray sanitiser liquid on your hands after washing?
  7. Did the Nail Technician wash their hands?
  8. Does the Nail Technician wear gloves?
  9. Is the Nail Technician using gel, acrylic or gel polish from brand labelled jars or bottles?
  10. Do you feel pain after the artificial nails have been applied?

A good professional nail salon will have:

  1. Professional Nail Technician certificate
  2. Certificate of insurance
  3. Can explain their sanitisation procedure
  4. Will use USA or European brand products (beware relabelled Chinese products)
  5. Clean and tidy salon, with no chemical odour
  6. Gives you personal attention, you are not served by different Nail Technicians for each part of the process

Avoid human trafficking

Nail bars are one of the main targets of human trafficking in the UK and many EU countries. 

Here are some signs for you to look out for:

What do employees look like?
Do they appear withdrawn and neglected or unwilling to engage? Do they appear younger than you'd expect? Are they avoiding eye contact, or is the presence or behaviour of another individual making them appear frightened? Are they resistant to being paid directly?
Is there a manager who takes the money and is overbearing or abusive?
Are there living quarters upstairs or attached to the nail salon? Are employees brought to work at the same time? 

What do they sound like?
Do they seem hesitant to talk? Do they speak to others in the salon? Can they speak English? Being unable to speak English can increase people's vulnerability.

How do you feel?
It's difficult to quantify, but trust your gut instinct. Do prices seem 'too good to be true'? Is the vibe you're getting making you feel uncomfortable? If you can't quite put your finger on it but you feel that some of the above indicators are present, you can report suspicions to the Modern Slavery Helpline.

Health Risks

Infections including: 

  • Hepatitis
  • e.Coli
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • TB
  • HIV 1
  • Hepatitis C
  • MRSA