The typical cost of a manicure in the city helps explain the abysmal pay. A survey of more than 105 Manhattan salons by The Times found an average price of about $10.50. The countrywide average is almost double that, according to a 2014 survey by Nails Magazine, an industry publication.

With fees so low, someone must inevitably pay the price.

Ever wonder why getting you nails done in NYC is cheaper then just about everywhere else?  Doesn’t it seem incredible that one of the most expensive cities in the US could have a service that is cheaper then almost anywhere else?  This is a great expose in the NYT about how workers are exploited.
I particularly liked this map showing the number of Starbucks vs. nail shops:

Source: The Price of Nice Nails