Fish Pedicures Treatment – Amazing Skin Treatment

October 13, 2008 at 8:13 am | Posted in entertainment, Information, news, World | 12 Comments
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Ready for the latest in spa pampering? Prepare to dunk your tootsies in a tank of water and let tiny carp nibble away.

Fish pedicures are creating something of a splash in the D.C. area, where a northern Virginia spa has been offering them for the past four months. John Ho, who runs the Yvonne Hair and Nails salon with his wife, Yvonne Le, said 5,000 people have taken the plunge so far.

“This is a good treatment for everyone who likes to have nice feet,” Ho said.

He said he wanted to come up with something unique while finding a replacement for pedicures that use razors to scrape off dead skin. The razors have fallen out of favor with state regulators because of concerns about whether they’re sanitary.

Ho was skeptical at first about the fish, which are called garra rufa but typically known as doctor fish. They were first used in Turkey and have become popular in some Asian countries.

But Ho doubted they would thrive in the warm water needed for a comfortable footbath. And he didn’t know if customers would like the idea.

“I know people were a little intimidated at first,” Ho said. “But I just said, ‘Let’s give it a shot.’ ”

Customers were quickly hooked.

Tracy Roberts, 33, of Rockville, Md., heard about it on a local radio show. She said it was “the best pedicure I ever had” and has spread the word to friends and co-workers.

“I’d been an athlete all my life, so I’ve always had calluses on my feet. This was the first time somebody got rid of my calluses completely,” she said.

First time customer KaNin Reese, 32, of Washington, described the tingling sensation created by the toothless fish: “It kind of feels like your foot’s asleep,” she said.

The fish don’t do the job alone. After 15 to 30 minutes in the tank, customers get a standard pedicure, made easier by the soft skin the doctor fish leave behind.

Ho believes his is the only salon in the country to offer the treatment, which costs $35 for 15 minutes and $50 for 30 minutes. The spa has more than 1,000 fish, with about 100 in each individual pedicure tank at any given time.

Dennis Arnold, a podiatrist who four years ago established the International Pedicure Association, said he had never heard of the treatment and doubts it will become widespread.

“I think most people would be afraid of it,” he said.

Customer Patsy Fisher, 42, of Crofton, Md., admitted she was nervous as she prepared for her first fish pedicure. But her apprehension dissolved into laughter after she put her feet in the tank and the fish swarmed to her toes.

“It’s a little ticklish, actually,” she said.

Ho said the hot water in which the fish thrive doesn’t support much plant or aquatic life, so they learned to feed on whatever food sources were available — including dead, flaking skin. They leave live skin alone because, without teeth, they can’t bite it off.

In addition to offering pedicures, Ho hopes to establish a network of Doctor Fish Massage franchises and is evaluating a full-body fish treatment that, among other things, could treat psoriasis and other skin ailments.

Ho spent a year and about $40,000 getting the pedicures up and running, with a few hiccups along the way.

State regulations make no provision for regulating fish pedicures. But the county health department — which does regulate pools — required the salon to switch from a shallow, tiled communal pool that served as many as eight people to individual tanks in which the water is changed for each customer.

The communal pool also presented its own problem: At times the fish would flock to the feet of an individual with a surplus of dead skin, leaving others with a dearth of fish.

“It would sometimes be embarrassing for them but it was also really hilarious,” Ho said.

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12 Comments »

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  1. wow….a different kind of skin treatment !!!

    what about treating the face skin ???

    😉

  2. If the human body is made up of 70% water, then our healthy is related with firstly water quality. Water is consisted of hydrogen and oxygen ions. Its ingredients and mineral compounds directly effect on water quality. Many researchers have been studying on good water and there is no agreed decision. Recently one common decision on good water is alkaline, low ORP value, hexagonal water cluster and rich mineral ingredients as known alkaline reduced water, alkaline ionized water, antioxidant water etc. We know that there are lots of thermal and spa water all over the world which have therapeutic effect on some illness. Alkaline water has also such healing effect depends on its alkalinity, structure of water clusters, quantity of hydrogen ions that gives to water antioxidant characteristic. As a result various scientists believe that alkaline antioxidant water has healing capability on some illness like cancer, aging, constipation, atopy, hyertension, diabetes, etc.

  3. Now that is interesting. I read somewhere that they use a similar skin treatment in Asia to treat psoriasis. I wonder if these fish could have a positive effect on acne or oily skin?

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  5. Not that I’m totally impressed, but this is a lot more than I expected when I stumpled upon a link on Furl telling that the info is quite decent. Thanks.

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    You have to keep Made from Earth Pure Aloe Treatment product in the refrigerator after opening. Which is great because then it is always cold. Because this is so natural, a little goes a long way. The consistency may vary, but the one I received looks just like freshly pressed aloe vera and this could be added to homemade beauty products you are using soon after you make them.

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  7. I don’t think there could be any more amusing way to treat any disease and I have never experienced anything like that but people who have always talk about that experience and it would have been great if we had something like that for curing staph skin infections as well, the problem that is growing by each passing day.

  8. That’s CRAZY! Nice post. I might have to share this with a few friends. Thanks. I’ve had psoriasis for about 46 years now. Psoriasis is bad enough but now I have psoriatic arthritis. After four years of methotrexate therapy, I’ve just about given up any hope. I’ve tried everything — nothing seems to really work for me. Maybe I should give this a try?

  9. I would gladly PAY money, not to have the fishes eat me.

  10. auh…must be horrible to have some fish nibbeling at your feet. Sticking to traditional pedicure…

  11. i frequent hair salons because i always want to keep my hair in top shape ,-,

  12. This is so cute. I haven’t heard of this, but I am willing to try a different pedicure style.


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