The Washington state Department of Licensing has decided that pedicures by fish — the use of live, tiny carp to clean feet — is unsanitary and illegal.
Christine Anthony, spokeswoman for the department, said it’s impossible to sanitize the live fish.
"You can clean the tank, you can clean the water, but there’s no guarantee that the fish aren’t carrying something from the previous customer."
The Seattle Times reports that the pedicures, popular in Turkey and other Asian countries, started gaining attention in the states after a Virginia-based spa talked to the media this summer about the benefits of using the fish instead of razors to slough away scales and calluses.
At Peridot, the only Washington salon believed to offer the nail job, an employee who declined to give his name, said he was "speechless" about the state’s ruling.