Chloe Randall

Pedicures: How to treat clients with diabetes

By Chloe Randall | 23 November 2023 | Expert Advice, Feature

Pedicure Arthritis

Scratch raises a light to diabetic clients and what to consider when treating them to a pedicure…

How can diabetes affect feet?

Diabetic clients are at much greater risk of developing foot problems. This is because their increased blood sugar levels can damage the sensations in their feet.

Diabetes can also affect blood circulation, which can lead to sufferers getting less blood supply to their feet. Without a good blood supply, diabetics may have problems with cuts and sores healing and may get cramps and pain in their legs or feet. If these problems aren’t treated, this could lead to foot ulcers, infections and at worst, amputations. Most foot problems can be prevented with good, regular footcare.

Experts share how you can go the extra mile to perform a pedicure on diabetic clients…

Clients who suffer from diabetes can be treated in a salon, as long as there is no infection, ulcers or neuropathy,” comments Teresa Frake, LCN trainer.

“Gentle moisturising products are beneficial for diabetic clients, as they tend to have dryer skin and sometimes cannot feel the difference between hot and cold. If carrying out a wet pedicure, ensure the water in the foot bath is not too hot before the client immerses their feet.”

“Diabetic clients are more prone to infection, so you must be very gentle and avoid scratching or injuring the skin,” notes Lucy Sharman, Elim pedi pro.

“You can soak the feet to soften the skin, giving you more flexibility, but avoid nipping the cuticle area. Instead, push it back with your cuticle tool. You can use a pumice stone, but avoid vigorous rubbing.”

“It’s important for diabetics to regularly check their feet,” adds Margaret Dabbs OBE, founder of Margaret Dabbs London. “Run your hand over the top, sides and back of the heels and underneath to check for any unusual lumps, bumps or hard skin.

“If you think anything looks like a cause for concern, recommend the client either has a diabetic foot check-up or sees a podiatrist.”