Would You Pay $300 For Snakeskin Toenails?

No, really: would you pay $300 to have a nail technician apply snakeskin to your toes in the most meticulous manner ever? That’s what some women are doing to stay on top of the latest thing for spring, the python pedicure. Because, seriously, why not?

As popular as snakeskin bags and fabric prints were during spring runway shows, they’ve been even more popular with nails. Vogue‘s Sarah Brown traveled to the source of the trend, a woman named Terri Silacci, and found out that the time-consuming treatment isn’t the brainchild of the runways, but of her sons. When the littlest Silaccis brought home a piece of shed snakeskin (then promptly gained interest in something else and left it behind) Silacci came up with a way to make use of it. She took it to work and developed a process for placing it and keeping it on women’s toes. This is how it works:

The delicate, almost transparent skin, which looks like very finely embossed parchment, was kindly donated by a four-foot-long female python who shimmied out of it one day, the natural shedding process for snakes as they grow. “Talk about renewable resources!” said Silacci as she laid small, textured pieces from the glossy, tubelike swath—meticulously hand-cut to fit the shape and size of each nail—on my toes between a thick layer of instant-drying gel base color (a deep blue called On the Dark Side) and a chip-resisting clear sealant. “Small snakes are usually my favorite. You get a lot more detail per square inch,” she mused, picking up a very fine artist’s brush, dipping it in a small pot of my accent shade (a metallic gray called Golden Silver), and tracing the ridges of the pattern to give “the outline of the snake some color.” Then she sealed me up with another coat of bulletproof clear and scooted my feet under a UV lamp for several minutes.

The effects last up to eight weeks without any signs of wear (except for, you know, growth) because of the special topcoat from Bio Sculpture Gel used to make the pedicure shine. And so long as no snakes have to die spefically to make your toes look great, this might be the coolest pedicure we’ve ever heard of.


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