Hygiene should be prioritized in the beauty industry, and the prevention of bacterial transmission must also be visible to the customers. It’s not only required for hygiene purposes but also aesthetically pleasing to be in a clean salon.
Since the appearance of Covid-19, hygiene has become even more important, and quite a few companies nowadays offer specialty Covid training. We recommend taking the free Barbicide Covid-19 Certification course: https://barbicide.com/certification/
What’s the difference between cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting and sterilizing?
- Physical cleaning removes germs, dirt, and other impurities from surfaces but doesn’t necessarily kill them.
- Sanitizing lowers the number of germs on surfaces or objects by 99.9% either by removing (through cleaning) or killing (through disinfecting ) them. Sanitizing means reducing the number of germs to a safe level.
- Disinfecting kills germs on surfaces or objects by 99.99%.
- Sterilizing kills ALL forms of life and other biological agents.
Disinfection is defined as destroying all pathogenic organisms or organisms capable of giving rise to infection. It is less effective than sterilization as all disinfectants do not kill spores.
Sterilization is any process that eliminates, removes, kills, or deactivates all life forms and other biological agents such as fungi, bacteria, viruses, spore forms, prions, and unicellular eukaryotic organisms present in a specified region.
Although sterility cannot be achieved in a salon (except temporarily for tools), the working environment should be kept as clean as possible. Microorganisms grow in an unclean environment; to prevent this, the technicians must be aware of the precautions and do their utmost to prevent bacterial transmission.
The following recommendations are general guidelines; ensure also to follow your country/state-specific requirements.
How to prevent bacterial transmission?
Using disposable products is the easiest way to keep everything clean.
- Make sure to keep disposables in a covered box/drawer to keep them clean.
- Never double dip a cotton swab, brush, or microfiber brush into a product again after it has come into contact with lashes. For instance, drip lash remover onto a dish and wet the brush instead of taking it directly from the bottle.
Be excessively scrupulous with personal hygiene:
- Disinfect your hands before each customer and after using your phone during treatments.
- Clean under your nails daily, as impurities and bacteria accumulate there.
- If you have a cough or feel you might be getting a cold, do not receive customers and get tested for Covid. Return to work only after you have received a negative testing result.
- When detaching tape for treatments, use a clean (paper) towel, NOT your or the customer’s skin. Detaching against the skin peels off a layer of dead skin cells, so it’s hardly hygienic to place the tape near the customer’s eyes afterward.
- Wear a mask during treatments.
You can disinfect only hard surface tools enough for multiple uses. For example, brushes and mascara wands have soft, dense bristles that can not be disinfected sufficiently, so they may NOT be shared between different customers to prevent the transmission of bacteria!
NB! Tools may be disinfected in a special disinfecting bath. However, disinfectant wipes or sprays do NOT offer a disinfection level that’s high enough for professional use, so only use them on top of soaking, not instead.
Fill the disinfecting bath with water and concentrate according to the instructions. We recommend using Barbicide.
- First, wash tools with soap and water to remove anything that could layer up and prevent proper sanitation.
- It would help if you disinfected the tools (tweezers, lash lift tool, silicone shields, etc.) with suitable products after each customer. If something is dropped during work, disinfect it before using it again.
- Rinse tools after disinfection.
- Disinfect equipment in a UV disinfection box or a clean paper towel. Change the paper towel while disinfecting your tools.
- Change the disinfecting fluid regularly, as bacteria can even begin growing there in time. Change the solution according to the manufacturer’s instructions, either daily or once a week.
How to sanitize Lash Lift silicones/rods
- Put silicone shields into soapy water immediately after removing them to loosen the tint.
- Let them soak for as long as possible to remove all product residue easily.
- Then rinse everything off.
- Disinfect the shields in the disinfection box NB! Please do not put them into an autoclave; the heat will damage the shields.
- Rinse with clean water to remove any residual disinfectant before using them again.
- Store in a closed box.
NB! Silicone shields may be used up to 4-5 times, as the disinfectant solution makes their surface more porous. Unfortunately, after 4-5 uses, the shields are so absorbent that they may retain bacteria, so they are no longer hygienic enough for customers!
- Wash the floors of your workspace at regular intervals.
- Towels and blankets kept on the work table and used during treatments should be changed and washed regularly. Depending on the current Covid situation, many countries have prohibited using blankets altogether as they can not be adequately disinfected between customers.
- Never let your hands rest against the customer’s bare forehead. Besides the discomfort the movements cause the customer, it is also unhygienic. Place a clean towel or a special headband on the customer’s forehead. You can replace the headband or towel with a single-use surgical face mask. Place the mask as shown in the figure:
- Fasten the bands behind the customer’s ears to prevent the mask from slipping off.
- It’s helpful to have a UV sanitizer box to keep sterilized tools in it (they are sometimes called sterilizer boxes for marketing reasons, but they only offer sanitizing properties). UV sanitizer boxes are also available for phones, and some even charge phones while sanitizing them!
- If a customer with something contagious has been in your salon, take ANY precaution necessary to prevent it from spreading. When the customer has left, clean (disinfect) ALL surfaces that the customer may have touched (pillow, bed, fleece blanket, tools, etc.) with extreme care. Wash the towels at the highest temperature to kill bacteria.
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