Nail salon safety procedures you should be following
You probably wouldn’t give it much thought, but nail salon safety procedures are a vital part of your business’ day-to-day. On a daily basis, you work with various harmful chemicals which are found in glues, nail polishes, removers and other products. Although you and your staff can be affected by long-term exposure, your clients may also be at risk of developing certain conditions, such as athlete’s foot, and may even be exposed to bloodborne pathogens, like HIV, hepatitis B or C. So how are you protecting your staff and clients from these dangers?
Keeping you and your staff safe
Working with strong chemicals most of the week can’t be too good for you and your team – yes, even that peach-scented nail polish remover isn’t super healthy. By constantly breathing in these vapours, you and your team are at risk of developing a number of health conditions. Some of the more common chemicals include:
- Butyl acetate: found in polish and remover – usually causes irritation to the eyes, throat, nose and headaches.
- Dibutyl phthalate (DBP): found in polish – causes irritation to the skin, eyes, throat and may cause nausea as well.
- Acetone: found in nail polish remover – causes dizziness, irritation of the eyes and skin and headaches.
- Acetonitrile: found in glue remover – causes problems with breathing, nausea, exhaustion and irritation of the breathing pathways.
- Formaldehyde: found in nail polish and nail hardeners – may cause cancer and breathing problems, as well as irritation to the eyes.
- Toluene: found in nail polish and certain glues – irritation to breathing pathways, liver and kidney damage and may even harm unborn children.
- Methacrylic acid: found in nail primers – causes irritation to breathing pathways and even burns.
In order to reduce the possibility of such side effects from occurring, you need to have well-established safety procedures. Whenever you can, purchase professional-grade products that are free from (or have reduced quantities of) dangerous chemicals. Also, read the labels of your products and make sure your team is familiar with the dangers of overexposure. By far the most important methods of avoiding chemical overexposure is by keeping products out of contact with your eyes, mouth and skin and having a well-ventilated workspace. Gloves, goggles and respirators reduce the possibility of coming in contact with dangerous chemicals, while a ventilation system keeps the air breathable.
Keeping customers safe
Although your clients can be affected by large doses of chemicals produced by your products, it’s not as likely to happen, as they’re not constantly working with them. However, clients are very susceptible to biological dangers if you don’t follow nail salon sterilization procedures. As mentioned previously, some of the more common dangers to customers are bloodborne pathogens, viruses, bacteria and fungal infections. If a client has a condition that is traced back to your nail salon, you can be blamed for professional negligence and may even have legal action filed against you.
In order to reduce the possibility of spreading biological hazards, you and your team need to carefully follow nail salon sterilization procedures. Make sure to:
- Avoid contact with blood or other bodily fluids
- Wear gloves during treatments
- Dispose of one-use products
- Wash your hands before and after working on a client
- Disinfect tools – this can be done in disinfectant solutions or with an autoclave – and tools should be stored in UV boxes
- Clean all surfaces that were in direct contact with your customers
- Disinfect foot basins after each use
You work on various clients and all it takes is one who may have a virus, fungal infection or harmful bacteria. If you treat them and fail to properly disinfect your workstation and tools, you may end up in a world of trouble – so make sure you and your team know exactly how to do so!