Is it normal that I'm in pain after doing a couple clients' nails?

July 24, 2017 | Bookmark +

I just recently started doing nails and I had two clients back-to-back. My hands were so tired after filing and I even started getting cramps, back pain, and shoulder pain. Is this normal? Will I get accustomed to my job after a while so I’m not in pain? 


It is not normal to have pain after a couple of clients in the salon! Make sure you are using good ergonomics. Try not to hunch over the table, grip the client’s fingers too hard, or tuck your feet under your chair. The way you sit while doing nails is important for the longevity of your career, so research correct posture as well as carpal tunnel prevention exercises. For a downloadable handout on perfect posture for nail techs, visit

—Holly Schippers, The Fingernail Fixer (

Editor’s note: Check out the Facebook page Confessions of a Nail Tech for more great nail tech questions like this one.

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What’s the cause of the pinkish-red oval area on the pad of my client’s toes?

I have a client who has a recurring problem with her fourth toes during the winter months. Both of her “ring finger” toes develop a pinkish-red oval area on the pad. Then a month later, when I see her again, the skin has become dry and hard like a callus, with the layers of skin peeling away to reveal a deeper, dark epicenter.  It’s extremely painful for her and, needless to say, we do not touch it. But it clears up in the summer when she’s wearing open-toed sandals, so I suspect it has to be due to the boots she wears in the winter. Plus she never puts lotion on her feet or uses a foot file in between visits. What do you think causes this?

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What are the big white spots on my natural-nail client’s nails?

I have a client who has been with me for about two years. She used to wear acrylic nails but has been a natural nail client for eight months or so. She has these white spots on her nails — big spots that are dry, but not flaky, right in the middle of the nail. I did try to buff them lightly but they do not come off or grow off. I had a new client come in last week who had the same on her toenails. She said it started after she had a pedicure done at another salon. Can you help?

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