Three ways to keep your feet in flip flop shop shape

Summer is here -- so break out the sandals and flip flops. For many women, that means it's also pedicure season. 

If you're planning on primping for sliding into those open-toed shoes, know what you're sticking your feet into, first.

Many women will treat themselves to a pedicure to get those toes in flip flop shape, but it could put your health at risk. Knowing these three things will help keep our feet clean. 

1) Choose a clean salon. Cleveland Clinic Foot Specialist Dr. Joy Rowland says you need to do some homework.

"As you're in the waiting room, just watch and see what they do. Do they clean the bowls after they're done with each client? Do they bring out new instruments for each client? That will give you an idea if they're using clean instruments,' Rowland says.

2) Make sure the tools being used in the pedicure don't tear or cut the skin. Rowland says when your skin gets cut and your feet go in the bowls, the bacteria from your skin swirls around inside the bowl and then gets into the cut and gets infected.

3) Look for tools that look like sandpaper or brushes, which will be softer on the skin than metal. That's true, even at home.

"I do not recommend metal files. I even tell my patients when they're in the office, when they file their own calluses at home, to please not use metal files because they can tear the skin," Rowland says.

Experts say be careful when you go for a discounted manicure/pedicure deal because that can sometimes involve a crowded salon and quick turnover, which means they may not be using the most thorough sanitation of the foot bath and the tools in between clients.

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