The weather is getting warmer and you are excited to dig out summer sandals but when you look down at your feet and see dry cracked skin and worn nail polish you decide to walk into a local nail bar for a pedicure. My question is, how can you know if this treatment will put you at risk for a serious infection?
We assume that all spas are following proper sanitation protocols but the reality is that it can be your own responsibility to know what to look for in a quality spa or salon establishment. To help you, I have created a checklist of basic health and safety procedures that must be followed to ensure your safety during a spa service.
Depending where you live, the spa/salon industry will have a set of local health board regulated guidelines or rules to follow for decontamination but if you notice that the following checklist is not followed at your appointment, I strongly suggest you leave and book an appointment where you know they consider your health and safety a top priority.
√ Consultation form
You must fill out a client consultation form which asks you to list all health issues and medications. Even if you are in for a quick eyebrow wax you should be asked to fill this out as medications and certain disorders can be a contraindication and harm your skin if the treatment proceeds.
√ Disposable items
There are many items that must be thrown out after one time use; these items include gauze, cotton swabs, cardboard nail files, nail buffers, birchwood sticks, dremel/nail drill tips and wooden spatulas. If you see a dirty nail file on the station, ask for a new one.
√ No Double Dipping
During a waxing or sugaring service, the esthetician is not permitted to use the same spatula to dip into the hair removal product multiple times. Be sure to watch that this is the procedure during your service.
Gloves do not have to be worn by spa professionals at all times but should be worn during services where blood spots could form such as with waxing or where the skin could be broken as with extractions during a facial or medical spa skin treatments. It is important to note that gloves do not replace hand washing and they must be new for each procedure.
√ Sterilization of tools
If you do not see the metal or plastic tools being sterilized, you should ask how it is done. Spas must be using either chemical (a liquid) or heat (an autoclave) for sterilization of metal tools; plastic tools can go in a chemical solution.
I hope this post will help you out so you can enjoy your next spa visit knowing that it will be a safe and beneficial experience that contributes to your overall wellness.
I welcome any questions or comments!
Have a beautiful day,