How many times do you think you should do a pedicure manicure at a nail salon? What would you rather do, save your money by doing it yourself at home or spend your money by having other people do it for you. Share your opinion with me….


Last Saturday, I went to a nail salon to have my nails and toes done. It was the first time in my entire life that I actually paid someone to clean my nails–WHAT?? Where are you coming from?  I know you won’t believe me. Well, it’s not that I am so cheap, but most of the time I don’t like to spend money especially when I know that I can do it myself.

But this time, my friend forced me to go. She told me that there is a big difference in DIY to DBOP (do it by other people). She insisted that it’s worth any penny. Well, because of my deep curiosity and to test her statement, I decided to go. I paid $30 to have my nails and toes done.


The owner was really nice. He even gave me a small therapeutic massage just to try it out. My only concern was the chair. It was too tall/big for me. Supposedly the chair’s function is to massage your back, shoulder and neck. I was too short for the chair. Instead of massaging my back, it massaged my back head :D and that made me dizzy.

My first manicure/pedicure experience was OKAY. It’s good though, but a frugal person like me always thought there’s no reason to waste money when you know you can do it yourself better. Besides that, $30 only last for 2/3 weeks. Then your nail and toes get dull and your nail polish get chips again. If you go trice/ twice a months you’ll spend $90. That’s a lot of money.

I think when we go to a nail salon to do a pedicure manicure, we pay more for relaxation and glamor. Instead of doing it yourself, you just need to lean back on your massage chair, read a magazine and let someone else do it all for you. Who doesn’t want to be pampered like that?


Some people are too lazy or don’t have time to do it themselves and would rather have someone else do it for them at a nail salon. There’s nothing wrong with that. But for me, I always think instead of spending my money for nails and toes, I’d rather spend my money for other things that are more important than that.

The reason I want to go to a nail salon this time is also because I want to see the process step by step. I want to learn so that I can do it myself, perhaps even better. I watched each step of the manicure/pedicure process carefully. My eyes ran around to read all the labels of the products they used. I asked them questions about some of the special products/tools that I’d never seen before.

My conclusion is… doing a pedicure/manicure is EASY. You can do it yourself at home in just 30 minutes. The pedicure manicure kit and essential products are available at many retail stores. Doing it yourself is a lot cheaper. For $50 you can get the entire pedicure/manicure kit and essential products which you can use for up to 5 or more times. That means you’ll save: $30 x 5= $150.


I personally think it’s good to do a manicure/pedicure at a professional salon at least once a year (especially after a dry winter). The reason is because there are certain products/tools the professional salon has that we simply don’t have at home such as melting wax, electric wraps, etc. After that, you don’t need to go to a nail salon once every 2 weeks. That’s a total waste of money. You can maintain by doing it yourself at home once every 2 or 3 weeks, or as many as you want. You can even do it everyday before having a shower if you want.

Here’s what I did. I bought all the pedicure manicure kits–the exact same ones that a nail salon has. I also bought, foot bath, foot cream, lotions, foot scrub etc… and wualllllllllllaaaa… I can have a beautiful nails and toes the whole year long without breaking my wallet.

For more details on how to do a home pedicure and manicure, check out these pedicure and manicure step by step


  1. One funny thing about NYC is that manicures and pedicures are SO CHEAP. At the place I go, a manicure is $6 and a pedicure is $13. There are even places you can go where you can get both for $15 Monday-Thursday.

  2. I couldn’t agree more! The idea of a pedi/mani is always so much better than the reality. Plus, I’m always disappointed to realize I just blew $30+ on something that only lasts a short time. My last pedicure, for instance, was so bad that the crummy polish chipped ON MY WAY HOME, making the money spent a complete waste. So now, once a week or so, I just do it myself.

  3. Thanks for a great post! I didn’t have a professional Mani/Pedi until I was 34 years old and have always managed to be well groomed – no overgrown cuticles, no cracked heels etc., and I’ve managed to put together a very nice DIY mani/pedi toolkit for this specific task… But then I got pregnant! So, until I can actually SEE my feet again, I’m paying $25 dollars every two weeks for a pedicure. Plus, I live in Phoenix and it’s almost mandatory to have a well groomed foot, even (and maybe especially!) while pregnant. So, I’ll keep shopping clearance sales and thrift stores gladly, but I’ll not give up my pedi’s until well after baby has arrived! Sometimes, frugality must be sacrificed for a little mental health…although it could just be the hormones talking.

  4. tex says:

    Yes I am pretty frugal, but pedicures are my one luxury. I have some rules, once every three weeks and only over the summer so I can wear open toe shoes whenever I want (I live in the South, so late April- early Oct). I do the manicure part at home, so make some savings there.

    Also, and this is the big justification, I color my hair at home (you would not believe the compliments I have gotten after doing my hair with a home kit), and space out haircuts – no expensive haircuts either. Also we have a million nail places, so the prices are pretty competitive.

  5. Ridley Fitzgerald says:

    You have some good information here about getting manicures and pedicures. My wife has always been a fan of getting these, so she will appreciate this. I will have to show her how you say to get a professional job at least once a year.


  1. […] at Zlittle Frugal Living compares professional manicures to frugal DIY manicures. “How many times do you think you should do a pedicure manicure at a nail salon? What would […]

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