The Pedicure Time Guide: How Long Should Yours Take?

How long does a pedicure take?

Let’s find out!

In this post, we’re going to go over all the different types of pedicures.

First, we’ll talk about what to expect and how long each service typically lasts.

Then I’ll give you a few tips (like what to wear and how much to tip) so that you can feel super confident when you walk into the salon.

I’ll also answer all of your burning questions, like how long a salon pedicure should last and how often you need to get one.

Sound good?

Let’s get started!

How long does a pedicure take?

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A pedicure usually takes between 35 and 90 minutes.

Treatment time depends on the type of service.

A basic pedicure (foot soak, toes filed and polished) will take around 35 minutes.

A luxury pedicure will take between 60 to 90 minutes depending on the length of the massage and polish type.

You should allow at least an hour for your treatment plus drying/waiting time.

What to expect when getting a pedicure

So how does it go down once you’re in the salon?

The first thing you’ll do is choose your color.

Then, the technician will have you sit in a chair and soak your feet in a warm, bubbly foot bath.

dry after pedicure

You may get a massage and/or a little foot scrub to remove hard skin if it’s included in the service.

After that, they’ll start working on your nails.

This usually includes filing, shaping, cuticle work, and applying polish.

There are many different types of pedicures and each one is a little different so let’s go into each type in a bit more detail.

Types of treatment, the cost, and how long they take.

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The time it takes to finish your pedicure depends on the type of service.

Here are the options, including the average cost, the time it takes to complete, and what to expect:

Basic pedi

A basic pedicure typically costs around $35 in a salon.

It includes a foot soak, toenail clipping/shaping, removal of dry skin and calluses using a pumice stone, and toenail polish.

A basic pedicure takes 35 minutes.

Deluxe pedi

The average cost for this type of pedi is $48.

The exact service varies but it will typically involve a lot of pampering.

This may include a foot massage, aromatherapy oils, and/or exfoliation treatment.

A deluxe pedicure takes 60 to 90 minutes.

Gel pedi

You can expect to pay around $45 for a gel pedi.

It includes all the same treatments and steps as the basic manicure, but longer-lasting gel nail polish is used.

A gel pedicure takes 45 minutes.

Shellac pedi

This service usually costs around $45.

Again, this involves the same steps as a basic manicure but with Shellac polish.

A shellac pedicure takes 45 minutes.

French pedi

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This is a $45 service that involves painting the toenails a natural pink color with white tips.

A french pedicure takes 45 to 55 minutes to complete.

Hot stone pedi

This type of pedicure will usually set you back around $65.

In addition to the normal foot care steps, this involves placing smooth, heated stones on the feet.

The stones are applied to the soles and topsides of the feet to stimulate muscles and pressure points.

hot stone pedicure

A hot stone pedicure takes 60 minutes to complete.

Paraffin wax pedi

A paraffin wax pedicure costs around $50.

It’s an intensely hydrating treatment that involves applying soft, warm wax to the legs and feet and a nice massage.

A paraffin wax pedicure usually takes 60 minutes.

Kids pedi

If you want to treat an under 12 to a pedi, then you can expect to pay around $25.

This is for the basic pedicure service with polish.

A kid’s pedicure usually takes 30 minutes.

One major thing that can affect the time it takes to do your toes is nail art.

If you’re getting anything beyond a solid color, expect it to take at least 15 minutes longer.

And if you’re getting something really intricate done, it could take an hour or more.

So be sure to factor that in if you’re on a time crunch!

What do you wear when getting a pedicure?

Let’s talk bottom half first.

Your best bet is to head out to the salon wearing something loose.

The last thing you want is to be trying to take off your skinny jeans without wrecking your new toes!

A skirt, shorts, or loose-fitting pants are ideal.

I like to wear trousers with elasticated bottoms because they are easy to roll up and down and I can stretch the bottoms when I take them off.

Ok, now shoes.

This is a tough one.

I mean, flip-flops are ideal obviously.

But what if it’s winter?

Well, I would suggest wearing open-toed shoes with a bit of warmth to them or closed-toe shoes in a very soft material.

If you give yourself enough dry time you should be fine.

How long do I sit after a pedicure?

This is a great question.

The answer depends on the type of nail polish you’ve had.

dark red toe nail polish pedicure

If you have normal nail polish I’d recommend waiting 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the salon.

If you’ve had gel or Shellac nail polish, I’d recommend waiting 5 to 10 minutes.

This is so that the nails have time to set properly and you don’t smudge them.

How long does a pedicure take to dry?

A pedicure done with standard (non-gel) nail polish will dry in around 20 minutes.

But it takes a lot longer than that to fully set.

You should be careful not to touch or knock your nails for at least 2 hours after the treatment.

And I’d recommend avoiding water for as long as possible too.

Gel pedis dry much more quickly, so you should be good to leave the salon pretty much straight away.

How long does a salon pedicure last?

Your salon pedicure should last at least a month.

To keep your feet looking their best, you should get a fresh pedicure every 4 to 6 weeks.


If you don’t want to spend the money on regular salon visits, you can give yourself a treatment at home.

It’s not as relaxing as going to a salon, but it’s a lot cheaper!

Factors that can affect the time it takes to do your pedicure

Although the times listed in this post are exact, there are some key factors that can affect the time it takes to get your feet looking gorgeous.

Here is a list of things that can affect how long it takes to get a pedicure:

  • The type of service you want
  • The type of polish you choose
  • How experienced your nail technician is
  • The condition of your feet and toenails
  • How often you get them done
  • Whether you want a design
  • How long you take to pick out a color
  • How talkative you are!

This last one is key.

If you’re the type of person who likes to chat during your salon visits, it’s going to take longer.

I’m not saying you should be a silent statue, but try to be mindful of the fact that your nail technician is trying to work and that other people might be waiting for their turn.

Benefits of a pedicure

So apart from making your toes look pretty, are there any benefits to getting regular pedicures?

It turns out there are!

Here are some of the benefits of getting a pedicure:

  • Helps to improve circulation in your feet.
  • They can prevent and treat nail fungus.
  • Gets rid of dead skin cells.
  • They can make your feet smell nicer.
  • Relieves stress and tension.
  • They can help you to relax.
  • They can boost your confidence.

If you get pedicures regularly, you’ll probably find that your feet are in better condition overall.

french pedicure

This is because you’re taking care of them on a regular basis and dealing with any problems early on.

Final thoughts:

Let’s have a quick recap, shall we?

Getting a pedicure is a great way to take care of your feet and keep them looking their best.

In this article, we have talked about the different types of pedicures, how long they take to do, how much they usually cost, and what you can expect from each service.

We have also discussed the benefits of getting regular pedicures and some factors that can affect the time it takes to do them.

So if you’re looking for a way to relax and improve your foot health, a pedi is definitely worth considering!


  • Phoebe Meadows

    Phoebe Meadows is a self-proclaimed nail addict, always on the lookout for the latest trends and techniques. When she's not creating stunning nail designs, you can find her researching the latest nail care products or experimenting with new techniques.