AHP Opposes Callus Grater Bill

AHP submitted written commentary to the Kentucky legislature regarding House Bill 468, which would allow cosmetologists and nail technicians to use callus graters for callus removal. We oppose this legislation because of the health and safety dangers associated with the instrument.

We invite you to read our comments below and write to your elected officials. Find your elected legislators here.

Associated Skin Care Professionals, Associated Hair Professionals, and Associated Nail Professionals (the Associations) provide professional liability insurance, business resources, professional publications, and legislative and regulatory advocacy for more than 47,000 members nationwide.

The Associations express firm opposition to House Bill 468 (HB 468), which would allow cosmetologists and nail technicians to use callus graters for callus removal. The danger associated with the instrument and its inherent risk to public health and safety is significant and the reason for our opposition.

Callus graters were common decades ago but are widely recognized as a dangerous implement and are now prohibited in many states. Pain is the only indication a licensee has as a warning sign to stop. It’s easy to accidentally remove enough skin to draw blood. Once this occurs, a licensee has exposed a client to many risk factors, including cross-contamination, open sores, and infection. It’s important to note that when a callus grater goes too deep on patients with thin skin, poor circulation, or diabetes, the instrument can cause burns, terrible wounds, or infections.

While we understand the intent of HB 468 is to make it easier to remove calluses and dry skin from feet, the goal should instead be to carefully smooth, treat, and moisturize the area. There are alternatives to callus graters—such as emery boards with grit—that can produce safe, quality outcomes. Files with grit do not remove calluses completely, but they buff and slough off the dead skin; they do not have the same safety concerns as a callus grater because they cannot remove live skin cells or cause bodily harm.

Fully removing a callus may only cause it to come back thicker, harder, and drier—a client does not benefit from removing a callus, but they do risk the potential of enduring harmful repercussions. The Associations believe HB 468 is a step in the wrong direction toward harmful health and safety consequences for the public.

We encourage you to vote no on HB 468.

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