Have You Ever Had a Mani/Pedi Mishap or Full-On Disaster?

Published in: Just For Fun

Once upon a time, this mani was Essie Vested Interest from the Fall 2013 Collection

I was looking at my hands last night and thinking, “Dang, this is a disaster!”

Got me thinking about mani/pedi mishaps…


I haven’t had any nightmarish nail salon experiences, thank goodness (knocks on wood), but I have heard some pretty gnarly stories.

The closest to a mani/pedi disaster was probably the time I treated myself to a fancy pedi at a shoo-shoo-foo-foo spa.

My toes looked great when I left! — but then I accidentally kicked the leg of a table and totally jacked up the pedi on my right foot.


Since I rarely go out and actually get my nails done, and it costs a small fortune, I was quite…perturbed (batsh*t crazy angry) the rest of the day.

What about you? Have you ever had a mani/pedi mishap or full-on disaster?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


P.S. TGIF!!! ๐Ÿ™‚


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  1. kim says:

    not really because i ALWAYS do my own nails. i would rather save my cash for new polishes than pay someone to do it for me. but i was at a friends wedding last year, and the bridesmaids had their toes done professionally that day and it looked like a 5 year old did it. luckily, it was a light enough color that you couldnt really see it, but the polish was all over their toes. they were all so annoyed that they had to pay for it.

    • Karen says:

      Oh no! That would really bug me too.

    • Paige says:

      I agree with you Kim, it is way more fun to save the money from salon manicures and play with new nail colors!

      I had my nails done at a salon before. The nail tech was overzealous with removing my cuticles, and accidentally cut in too deep at the sides of my nails. My finger tips were raw and hurt for days… It took my own wedding to push me to go to another salon to get a gelish manicure done (thankfully this time everything went fine – no injuries!), but that was pretty much it!

  2. Heidi says:

    Yeah, thanks to Missy, mani mishaps are pretty much a regular thing around here.

    She seems to feel a need to jump on my lap every, single, time I have wet nails. Good thing black is a neutral so the fur doesn’t clash with whatever color I used!

  3. Sasha says:

    Karen, you look BEAUTIFUL in that pic! ๐Ÿ™‚ I once had a manicure and when I came to pay, I was trying to get my card out to pay oh-so-carefully when SMUDGE! I’d destroyed 2 nails and a thumb. It was right in front of the girl who’d just painted my nails so she offered to re-do them, although she looked quite peeved!

  4. doroffee says:

    I used to bite my nails, and when I got fed up because of it, I went to a place to put on fake nails to let them grow without me munching on them. The first place was really filthy, the girl had hideous nails, was chewing gum throughout the entire conversation and told me I had too short nails for fake nails in a really condescending and rude manner. When I heard that they could do fake nails on short, chewed on nails, too. Then I visited an other place… and the difference was obvious. The lady was nice and cool and she did my nails with ease. So, as it turns out, the rude girl at the other salon wasn’t even a professional one (or just was lazy to do mine or didn’t wanna do mine because she had a phobia of chewed nails, who knows :D).

  5. krystle says:

    I’m not sure this counts as a disaster but i used to get french mani acrylics. Sometimes due to lack of time id go 4 or 5 weeks without getting then done. It was a trashy broken mess. Looking back i cant believe i did that

  6. Danielle says:

    I had a manicure recently and my nails got filed completely crooked! It looked so weird and I had to complain.
    Danielle recently posted … Fall 2013 Nail Polish Ideas

  7. Erin says:

    I haven’t gotten a pedicure in almost two years due to a big “mishap”. Foot fungus. Right after I had gotten a pedicure at a high traffic salon I noticed how two of my toes were starting to crack and itch while turning purple. Never spread to my other toes and eventually cleared up but NOPE. No more. I’d rather let my cat lick my feet.

  8. Celine says:

    I went to a salon to have acrylics removed and it came with a free manicure with removal. After one technician pulled them off, he passed me off to an older woman (I think the mother of the owner), who proceeded to take the cuticle cutting scissors out of the autoclave bag, wipe off someone else’s old cuticles, and start clipping mine! Then she cut me twice and I bled. She then painted one coat, with no base or top, because she didn’t feel like it. I haven’t returned to the salon since.

    Another disaster (I paint my own nails now) is I’m a lab technician, so once in a while I’ll spill solvent on my hands and melt my polish! Doh!

  9. I can count the times that I had my nails done on one hand (pun intended!). But it never went horribly wrong and I was always pleased with the result ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Lorraine says:

    I usually do my own- same as Kim, to save $ to spend on new colors! But I do get them done when on vacay with my sis, to this place that kills me with the add-ons. I think I am going to get a certain service at a certain price and then they ask to add all kinds of extras and don’t state the price- a flower, a gem, a parafin dip, etc etc. Mind you, I could stop and ask at each one, but there is a language barrier plus you seem cheap when you ask at everything, or say no to everything. I am also paying for 2 manis, since my daughter likes to tag along with the big girls. This is my sister’s fave salon, and I don’t want to get her favorite nail tech upset with her… so- when all’s said and done at the end, and I have to pony up a tip on top of that- I get major sticker shock! Could have bought a couple of Tom Ford Lacquers and a Chanel for all that cash!

  11. Kim says:

    All my disasters are self-inflicted because I’m always last minute when doing my nails/toenails (no salon disasters). I usually end up hitting my polish on something – and a few times have put my wet toenails in shoes or socks. The sock thing always turns out great. HAHA!

  12. Tara says:

    Whenever I get my toes done, I get a toenail fungus or warts. Every, single time. Then it takes at least 6 months of treatment to grow out the affected nails. I love mani/pedis but I just can’t risk it anymore.

  13. Rachel says:

    I never get my nails done because I know I can do it better myself! The last time I got them done it was because I had a gift certificate at a beauty school ( should have known better!). They looked so awful I came home and did it myself!

    • Karen says:

      I’m the same way. Although I do occasionally like getting my toes done because I don’t want to deal with the drama going on down there, LOL. Sometimes it’s just nice to be able to relax quietly and read a magazine! I like that part of it.

  14. Katherine M says:

    I have actually never gone to get my nails done anywhere because I have very brittle toenails from a type of anemia I have, and it’s bad enough I break one doing something. I am a nail biter so manicures are out. I have heard horror stories from people having fake nails, though, so I will probably never ever get them.

  15. Mariam says:

    I had this one glitter pedi at a high end spa that had the weirdest aftermath! A few days after, I wore opaque tights. When I took them off, the polish was completely gone on most of my toes, it had peeled right off and my nails were completely clean! i assume they had put a weird base coat or something…

  16. Karina says:

    YES—have had major mani mishap! Years & years ago, I went to a manicure place in the mall (I know-major red flag warning NOW–but I was young & innocent!). The mani looked great-til I reached in my purse for my wallet–one entire nail smudged up -base coat, color, top coat. Boy, was I unimpressed. It sat halfway up my nail & I wanted to cry, as I don’t usually spend $ on mani’s. I now do mine at home unless special occasion. I’ve also got 1 wonky toe, next to the piggy, who likes to sit under the 3rd toe. I ALWAYS warn pedicurists of this lil rascal–they never bunch him up enough. The only way to prevent polish getting all over the back of the 3rd toe is to triple wrap her up to support her up & out–or use toe seperators.

  17. Christine says:

    I usually do my own ($7 essie polish or $20 mani? I know which one saves money!) and I’ve gotten pretty good at it.
    I only even soak and then push my cuticles back. Last time I went for a mani (beginning of August, was going to a wedding), I forgot to ask her not to trim my cuticles. Oops. She trimmed too much and I didn’t realize it until she spritzed nail polish remover on my fingers…it stung and I was bleeding on two fingers! Yikes.
    And then for my birthday last year I treated myself to a mani when work told me to go home early…tried a new place downtown and it was SO unevenly done! I didn’t notice until the next day just how much I didn’t like it. I took it off a couple days later.

  18. Katherine says:

    My am having a mani disaster at the moment. I was getting mani/Pedi’s at a salon in Mililani Hawaii for the last year we lived there and the last couple of times I went the guy that did my nails was super aggressive with the nippers around my cuticles on one of my pinky fingers. I didn’t pay much attention as we moved and over the course of June and July I noticed I was having issues with my pinky finger.

    Fast forward to two weeks ago when I woke up and my pinky finger was swollen and throbbing and three times its normal size.

    I have a fungal infection from that salon. I’ve finished one course of Sporanox but it looks like I’ll have to take another round next month. I’ve sworn off salon services and will be doing my own nails from now on…very irritating.

  19. I’ve had very few manicures in my life and thankfully, they turned out quite good with no mishaps!
    Ankita@corallista recently posted … 5 Steps to Flawless Nails!

  20. Vanessa says:

    Not really any big ones — but I asked the woman to do two coats and she did but two days later they chipped really really bad! But I still neededntonget my nails done so I was glad I did

  21. Liz says:

    I never have; I always do my toenails at home and usually my pedis, but occasionally I’ll go get my pedis done professionally. My favorite mani/pedi place has these AMAZING massage chairs where you wait for your nails to dry. They don’t rush you out of them either! ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Felis says:

    Only the time that my pedicure guy got *really* creepy about my feet. Leering, inappropriate remarks, and a massage that made me want a shower afterward. EW.

  23. Michelle says:

    Yeah, i always have a mani/pedi whenever I go for regular manicures. Unfortunately, I don’t have the patience to sit long enough waiting for the polish to dry. ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Hina says:

    I can totally relate to this post.. I’ve had few mishaps too..

  25. Majick says:

    I find it really annoying to pay for a mani/pedi and when you you get home and look at them in normal light, they are uneven, crookedly filed, not all the same length, have SHARP edges, etc.

    I stopped going (and I used to be a regular) because I just couldn’t get a satisfactory job. It takes me half of forever to do them myself but they look great when I do. I do have horrible cuticles and tend to get a little over-zealous with them sometimes.

    Biggest MISHAP: many (many) many (uh huh, three) moons ago I sat down for a regular manicure; the girl proceeded to file INTO my nail bed – IIIEEEEHHHHH OOWWWWWW! yep, I SCREAMED, I could NOT believe she did this? ANd, it was so quick, I was flabbergasted for lack of a better word. THankfully, I got my hand away in time but I just could not wrap my head around what her problem was. If something like that happened to me now I’d be doing more than screaming. ugh… but when you’re young sometimes you don’t have the self confidence to stand up for yourself. I have that now. LOL

    I also just stumbled upon a little nail shop close to my house that is clean, the girl who did my nails is very sweet, AND – she does my nails exactly the way I like them. Now I just ahve to make the time to go.

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