The safety of New York’s nail salon workers has recently been a topic of conversion, but what about the safety of those who frequent these salons?
The products found in salons, such as nail polish and nail polish remover may contain many toxic chemicals, including DBP, Tolune, and Formaldehyde. These chemicals can be dangerous not only to employees in these establishments, but also to the customers. Potential risks associated with prolonged exposure to these products include lung disease, miscarriage, and cancer. When choosing a nail salon, ask if they use safe, non-toxic products.
While exposure to these chemicals are making headlines, other risks, including developing toe nail fungus, plantar’s warts, or even a bacterial infection are all a cause for concern.
Follow these nail salon safety tips before your next trip to the salon:
• Bring Your Own Tools – By purchasing your own instruments, you can ensure that no one else has used them. All metal tools should be cleaned with hydrogen peroxide between uses. All non-metal tool, such as files can’t be sterilized and should be discarded after each use because they can harbor bacteria.
• Ensure Proper Sterilization – If you opt to use the salon’s tools, make sure all pieces of equipment that touches your skin was sterilized in an autoclave (steam sterilizer) between each use. Some salons may use a UV sterilizer, but this process does not kill bacteria.
• Proper Hygiene is a Must – Salon employees should wash their hands between each customer. While waterless sanitizers are acceptable, washing hands using soap and warm running water is preferable. Employees can also use gloves as an extra layer of protection.
• Don’t Get Your Cuticles Cut – The purpose of cuticles is to protect the nail bed from bacteria. If that’s their job, why would we want to cut them? Using cutters, razors, or other tools can allow bacteria to enter your body and cause an infection. Instead, use a cotton-tipped stick to gently push the cuticles back.
• Footbath Safety – Make sure your salon’s footbaths are cleaned in hot, soapy water and sprayed with a disinfectant between each use. Also, tub liners should be used. To be extra careful, bring your own tub liner or garbage bag.
• Check for General Cleanliness – Inspect the overall condition of your salon’s floors and bathrooms. Odds are if they are not clean, the shop does not make sterility a priority.
Before you get that manicure or pedicure this summer, make sure your salon is safe. The cost of beautiful nails should not be your health.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.