The disinfection technique that we’re taught in beauty schools is usually complete and detailed. You know, we take our implements to the dispensary, turn on the warm water, then soap and brush our implements. Next, we rinse them, dry them and place them in the disinfection tray…yadayadayada. The problem: Successful nail technicians don’t have time to use a dispensary method for disinfection. Who has the time to go to the dispensary? So, many of us cheat on the technique. Worse, some don’t do it at all. So, what happens? Maybe “greenies” begin to appear on our clients. Or a few clients, concerned about our cleanliness and professionalism, begin to look around for another technician. Cleanliness is important to contemporary clientele. Whatever is happening, we need to find a way to clean up our act without constantly trekking to the dispensary.
I’ve devised a technique that works for busy technicians, and it’s quick and easy. It’s fully protective AND will be noticed by the clients. Time is minimal and, best of all, you don’t have to get up from your table. The equipment needed to perform the technique is as follows: two spray bottles, a disinfection container (tray or jar), a nail brush and a clean towel. I chose two different-colored bottles that are attractive, inexpensive and small (for purposes of this explanation, the black spray bottle is a surface disinfectant and the blue is water).
The procedure is as follows:
- After you’re finished with your client, lay the implements on a clean towel and sprayed with disinfectant (black spray bottle), then turn them over and spray again. Use a nail brush to aggressively remove any debris. Please note that the table towel is not used during this technique– it will be oily. You must use a clean towel.
- Spray the implements generously with water (blue spray bottle), turn them over and spray again.
- Pat the implements dry with the towel–preferably an unused section of it.
- Place the implements in the disinfectant jar or tray for the length of time suggested by the disinfectant company. Remember, implements left for overlong periods of time in disinfectant solution can become dull.
- Remove your implements from the disinfectant and spray them with water (blue bottle).
- Pat them dry with a clean towel and place in a clean storage area until needed. A separate container is best. Placing them in a dirty drawer will contaminate them. (Multiple sets of re-useable implements are recommended for each professional. I recommend at least two, I have three.)
Table Surface Cleanliness
The surface of your table is important in disease prevention–and an area your next client will see immediately. After each client is finished, spray the tabletop with a surface disinfectant spray and wipe it dry. This quick wipe is great prevention through mechanical removal of any culprit bacteria or virus; however, it’s not considered sufficient disinfection of the surface. That takes time! To get the job done, a couple times a day we should do a “set time” for the disinfectant. For instance, any time you’ll have 10 minutes away from your table during the day, spray the tabletop and wipe it off, then spray it again generously and allow the disinfectant to sit for 10 minutes. Or, as the dentists and dental hygienists do between patients, spray the tabletop, wipe, spray it again, then leave it to dry while you’re absent. When you return, spray it again and wipe it off to renew the shine.
Sanitation and disinfection are professional duties, but they do not have to be cumbersome and time consuming. We can perform them at our table for our clients to witness-and appreciate.