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As a talented and in demand PMU Artist, you are dedicated to giving your clients an exceptional experience with incredible results, but when was the last time that you reviewed your Health & Safety procedures?
Do you really know how to work safely and efficiently in your salon or workspace? Are you up to date with the latest health & safety legislation and new regulations?
This month we discuss safe salon procedures in the PMU industry, whilst it may not be the most exciting conversation topic, it should be the most vital one for everyone performing or undergoing any form of PMU.
Beauty salon health and safety protocols include a set of procedures that are put in place to protect yourself and your clients from any hazards, risks, and cross contamination. It is important to follow them all as even the smallest omission could undermine all your other efforts to create a safe environment in your workspace.
Here Kelly Fitzmaurice, Head Educator for Everlasting Brows shares her top 5 tips that you should follow for increased hygiene and safety for all your PMU procedures.
This list is certainly worthy of having a quick peek at, just in case you have been overlooking something crucial or doing something that you need to correct…
CLEAN, CLEAN, AND CLEAN AGAIN - This may come as a shock to everyone, but reports show that the simple practice of cleaning and disinfecting the work area, beauty couch and work surfaces or trolley is one of the most effective tools to avoiding any cross contamination. There are many brands and ingredients that offer great bacterial and viral decontamination, it is important however to remember not to mix bleach and ammonia containing products as such mixture produces poisonous gas that can cause asthma.
*TOP TIP - Ensure that you work surfaces including your beauty bed are made of non-porous materials and are adequately protected during the procedure with waterproof coverings.
PPE – It stands for Personal Protective Equipment, and I am sure you have heard about it more than once over the last 2 years, but in fact it was a salon essential within the PMU industry well before the C word took over the world. These essentials would include a disposable protective coat or apron, disposable gloves, and a disposable face mask. The key to doing this right is ensuring that you have a new “outfit” for each client. How exciting! (except they all look the same). *TOP TIP - Everlasting provides medical grade, safe and branded aprons and trolley covers for artists to purchase.
GLOVES - Let us discuss this in a little more detail as gloves misuse seems to be a classic and common fail in the PMU industry.
The gloves that you need be wearing to protect yourself and your client should be medical grade gloves made of latex or nitrile (preferably nitrile to eliminate any risk of latex protein allergies that are currently on the rise). Some people might be tempted to opt for vinyl gloves, due to their affordability, however they do not offer a sufficient level of protection required in PMU procedures.
Once you pick the type of gloves that are safe to use, please ensure to select the size that fits you comfortably. The right size not only provides better hands mobility, but also the optimum protection. Gloves that are too small can easily break during the procedure, posing a great risk. Gloves that are too big can get in your way and sustain some damage in the process.
Wearing gloves is not a substitute for hand washing and your hands should be washed and sanitised before the gloves are slipped on, and then a sanitiser should be used once the gloves are on for extra protection.
New gloves must be applied before each procedure and any possibly contaminated surfaces such as your phone, a pen, clipboard or camera should be avoided while wearing gloves. You should also avoid touching your face and hair once your gloves are on. Your hair should ideally be tied away from your face to avoid the need to readjust them during the procedure.
*TOP TIP - DO NOT come in contact with a non-contaminated surface with your contaminated gloves. That means you have to remove and dispose of the gloves in the relevant medical waste bin before your reach for that pigment bottle or more numbing!!!!
DISPOSABLES - There is always a debate regarding what a disposable is and what it isn’t. So, let’s clarify that. A disposable is a single use (often sterile) item, designed to be used on one client and then disposed of. Your working trolley should be fully disposable for optimum salon safety. What does this mean? Should you storm into IKEA to buy out all their stock? No. You don’t have to dispose of the actual trolley/side table, however everything that stays in your active working area during the procedure must be disposed of. So, if you have kept a pigment bottle and a box of cartridges on your tray during a PMU procedure that means they both have to end up in the bin. You cannot use them on another client even if they are brand new as they are now considered contaminated. So, you have to make sure that you have enough products on your tray to let you complete the procedure. All other items that you plan to reuse need to be stored elsewhere (on another level of a multi-level trolley or a different trolley/side table). Your disposable items include pigment rings, mapping thread, ruler and pencil. Items that you will dispense in small quantity from a bigger packaging include pigments, numbing solution, cartridge and wet tissues or wipes, cotton buds and microbrushes.
The items that are designed to be used for more than one procedure are non-disposables. Since these items can be used over and over again, please make sure that they are not mixed up with the disposables. Once you start working on your client you cannot touch the non-disposable trolley with your gloves. *TOP TIP - Move them away from temptation. Items here may be your pigment bottles, secondary anaesthetic and box of tissues or water wipes.
CORRECT WASTE DISPOSAL - Which bin is which? Sharps, medical waste or general waste. ALL of these should be in your working area. Sharps for your sharp objects (sort of says it on the box) Medical waste for all of your contaminated equipment (your disposable items) and general waste for anything else.
*TOP TIP - I have attached a handy checklist for you to check your disposables just in case the confusion sets in which may well be possible after this blog!!!
Keep safe peeps!
Prepared by Kelly Fitzmaurice and Monika Ludwiczak