Sanitation Best Practices to Reopen Your Salon

The best practices below are based on the co-hosted webinar between Barbicide and the PBA. Sanitation procedures and requirements will also vary by state, so it’s best to check with your local health department and board of cosmetology for specific state regulations. This blog appeared on Sola Salon Studios.

As the world continues to adjust to the effects of COVID-19, one thing is certain: Life post-pandemic will be different. Expectations are changing around social interactions and attention to cleanliness will be incredibly important. Customers want to feel safe and secure in your salon, and you want to feel comfortable and confident having clients in your chair.

Now is the time to adjust, adapt and implement new sanitation practices and procedures. When it's time to reopen your salon doors, follow the below best practices to keep your studio as clean as possible for you and your guests. 

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Safety and Disinfectant Best Practices

  • Disinfectants must be EPA-registered and labeled as bactericidal, virucidal and fungicidal. No product will be labeled for COVID-19 yet, but many will have coronavirus efficacy on their label or available on their websites. The EPA has approved any product that has tested effectively against human coronavirus.
  • Disinfection only works on clean surfaces, so be sure you clean the surface before with soap, water and chemical cleaners. Disinfectant is also only for hard, non-porous surfaces (such as door handles, samples, lotions, shampoo bowls etc.), and should be done daily.
  • Pay attention to contact time. Contact time on a label refers to how long the surface must stay visibly wet with disinfectant to destroy all pathogens on the surface. Typical contact time for sprays is 10 minutes, and for wipes, 2-4 minutes.
  • Porous/soft surfaces cannot be disinfected, but they can be cleaned. This includes, but isn’t limited to, items such as towels, chairs and your hands/body. On initial re-opening, feel free to disinfect your chairs – but remember that ongoing use of disinfectants on soft materials can damage the material in the long run. Try to limit this to once a day.
  • Pay close attention to things people touch a lot. Door handles, for example, should be disinfected every 1-2 hours. Retail shelves should be very clean if you intend for people to browse and shop.
  • Clean and disinfect your shampoo bowl, handle, hose, spray nozzle and shampoo chair with a properly concentrated disinfectant or wipe.
  • Laundry and linens should be washed in hot water with detergent and considered dry only until items are hot to touch. If needed, consider taking laundry home to avoid crowding the breakroom.
  • All linens should be stored in closed, covered cabinets until used.
  • Wash your capes after each use! If you need to stock up, consider purchasing additional capes from the Sola Store
  • Order Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as masks for yourself and your clients. PPE should be single-use and switched out after each client. Keep an eye out on the Sola Store as we are sourcing items to help make this easy for you!
  • Hand washing is the gold standard for disinfecting. Clients should always be encouraged to wash their hands over using hand sanitizer. Also, wash your hands after using gloves.

Scheduling and Check-Out 

  • Stagger your appointments when possible to allow enough time to clean and disinfect between clients.
  • Consider adjusting your walk-in policy to limit the flow of strangers in your salon.
  • Think about ways to make point-of-sale safer, including implementing systems such as SolaGenius, which has touchless credit card processing.
  • Ask clients to read their card numbers to you if you’re using an iPad to ensure you’re the only person touching the screen. If they need to touch your device to sign, consider disinfecting your device with Barbicide disinfecting wipes. Let the liquid from the wipe dry for 1-2 minutes, and if needed, take a dry cloth to remove any streaks on the screen.

Best Practices for Alternative Services

  • Nail Technicians:
    • Pumice stones should go in the trash after each use since they can never be disinfected.
    • For pedicures, scrub the bowl between every visit.
  • Estheticians:
    • Wear gloves when setting up the room before a client’s visit.
    • Clean and disinfect all treatment tables.
    • Empty wax pots, completely clean and disinfect, then refill with new wax.
  • Barbers:
    • Clean debris out of clippers before and after every client visit.

Salon Best Practices

  • Remember, what your customer wants (or needs) to feel comfortable might be more than what the state mandates. Go the extra mile so there is zero doubt in your client’s mind that they are safe and secure stepping into your salon.
  • Ensure all single-use items are brand new.
  • Discard items in your salon that people pick up and put back down, such as:
    • Magazines
    • Self-serve coffee
    • Candy jars
    • Kid’s toys
  • Send an email or letter to your clients emphasizing your commitment to sanitation and outlining the steps you’re taking to ensure their health and safety.
  • Place signage in your studio to notify clients of your diligence in practicing safe and proper infection control.

Get Barbicide Certified

  • Barbicide represents the gold standard for safe services in salons and barbershops through their wide selection of disinfectant and sanitation products. The Barbicide Certification course is a free online course that equips you with the education to keep your salon clean and safe. At the end of the course, you’ll receive a portfolio-ready certificate that you can display on your wall for clients to see.
    • CLICK HERE to get Barbicide certified.
    • CLICK HERE  to register for the Sola-exclusive webinar co-hosted with Barbicide on Friday, April 24th at 12 pm PST.

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