Pedicures certainly should be classified as a want when one is doing a budget or a spending plan. But for a South Florida gal, like me, they nudge into the category of need since my toes are exposed on a regular basis. I wear peep toe pumps at work and sandals and flip flops on the weekend so unsightly toes are something I "need" to avoid.
Over the last year or so, having a regular pedicure has turned into a regular habit for me. While I strive to avoid lifestyle inflation, I have just worked this service into my regular expenses, as part of my allowance. Said another way, while I am spending more on my toes I am not spending more in general.
I pay quite a bit to have my hair cut, I've got long hair complicated hair and this is an expense that has been part of my regular budget since college. So the spa/salon where I get my hair cut offers a very nice pedicure service which I have used with some regularity over the last few years. Basically, when I get my hair cut, every six weeks, I often get my toes done. The cost at this location is $55 ($65 with tip). A pedicure at this spot is a luxury experience, super nice massage chairs and thorough and pampered experience. The pedicure lasts quite a long time, normally at least two and half weeks or so.
On the other end of the spectrum, there is a no-frills nail salon near my office which charges $22 for a pedicure ($27 with tip). This spot is very convenient and has later hours so it is an easy stop after work. But, there are no massage chairs and I don't find it to be a relaxing experience. The pedicure from this place lasts a week or so.
So recently, I bought a Groupon for a day spa located near my home (I had no idea it was there) and had a great pedi and mani for $30. It is a great spa, new and well appointed (meaning that it had great massage chairs). My Groupon pedi lasted for more than two weeks (really almost three weeks) and I was very happy with the quality of the services. Even though I only had a classic pedi, the treatment and time almost reached spa level pedi in my mind. So, the Groupon worked, and I went back for another pedi this past weekend. The regular price for a classic pedicure is $40 ($50 with tip) so this spot falls in between the prices of the spa/salon where I get my hair cut and the convenient spot near work. But, I would say that this new location provides similar quality and level of service as the $55 pedi. The only down side is that this place is not open late so it has to be a Saturday stop for me and my Saturdays are always busy.
I've really found that paying a bit more for quality is saving me time (since I don't have to have a cheap pedi every week or so) and increasing my joy in that I really enjoy the experience.