December 14, 2010

State regulators warn against credo blades during pedicures

Jefferson City, Mo. — State agencies are reminding consumers and salon owners that it’s illegal to use razor blades to remove calluses during pedicures or other foot and skin treatments. The state Board of Cosmetology and Barber Examiners says it has received complaints from salon customers over the past year that a certain type of device – known as a credo blade – has been used to remove calluses or other dead skin.

Credo blades, short-handled devices similar to household razors, are specifically banned in state regulations as a health hazard. Using a blade to remove skin can cause bleeding, potential infections and remove healthy as well as dead skin.

Calluses should be removed only by a licensed cosmetologist or manicurist, and using a pumice stone, file or other device that does not run the risk of cutting healthy skin.

“These consumer complaints are disturbing, because licensed professionals know credo blades are illegal in Missouri,” said Wayne Kindle, president of the state Board of Cosmetology and Barber Examiners. “In some cases, consumers are asking to be treated with credo blades, and professionals need to stand their ground and refuse, explaining that using these instruments could jeopardize their state license.”

Credo blades are illegal in most states, and were banned in Missouri in 2009. Kindle says there have been nine complaints about the blades, and it’s safe to assume that’s a small fraction of the number of actual incidents.

The state board also encourages consumers to verify the license of any professional providing hair care, manicures, pedicures or various types of skin treatments. State regulations require cosmetologists, barbers, manicurists and estheticians to display their state license in a place consumers can easily find it.

Consumers with questions or complaints should call the state board at 573-751-1052 or visit the board’s website.

Note: An Internet search for “credo blade” will return numerous images of this tool.

About the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration

The Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration (DIFP) is responsible for consumer protection through the regulation of financial industries and professionals. The department's seven divisions work to enforce state regulations both efficiently and effectively while encouraging a competitive environment for industries and professions to ensure consumers have access to quality products.

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