Proper sterilization and sanitation are essential in any business, not just microblading. If you’re thinking of becoming a permanent makeup artist, then get a head start on what microblading sterilization involves.
This beginner’s guide gives an overview of the processes involved in preparing your workspace. Interested in a more thorough education on microblading sanitation and sterilization? Well, all of our beginner courses include a lecture on how to keep your workspace, tools, equipment, and clients safe.
For now, here’s part 1 of our beginner’s guide. You can view part 2 here.
Health standards according to federal agencies
Microblading artists need to concern themselves with two federal agencies. That’s the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
OSHA is the government agency that sets safety standards for workers who come in contact with bodily fluids. Meanwhile, the CDC studies and provides information on curing and preventing diseases.
The standards provided by these two agencies are the microblading artist’s guidelines for maintaining a safe working environment. According to OSHA, “Anyone who comes in contact with bodily fluids must be gloved, gowned, goggled, and masked.”
General guidelines according to these agencies are as follows:
- Wash hands before and after touching each patient, regardless if you were wearing gloves or not.
- Use antiseptic hand cleaners.
- Wear gloves when coming in contact with non-intact skin, blood, and body substances.
- Change gloves after each patient contact.
- Wear lab coats or scrubs when in contact with a patient.
- Wear masks or eye shields when in contact with a patient.
Proper hazardous material handling
- Place hazardous waste in a separate trash bin than non-hazardous waste.
- Always label hazardous waste.
- Place sharp objects and needles in puncture-proof disposal containers.
- Make sure needles are not bent, sheared, or replaced in their sheath after use.
- Always label biohazard objects as such to alert workers of potentially hazardous material.
Keeping the workplace sanitized
- Disinfect all patient areas regularly.
- Immediately clean up any and all spills.
- The following personal activities should also be banned from working areas:
- Applying cosmetics
- Handling contact lenses
Sterilization and sanitation methods
There are several sterilization and sanitation methods for microblading tools.
- Autoclave. An autoclave is an instrument that sterilizes tools and equipment through high-pressure saturated steam.
- Ultrasonic cleaners. Ultrasonic cleaners use high-frequency bursts of ultrasonic energy applied to a heated liquid cleaning solution. This solution penetrates parts of your equipment that are impossible to reach with brushes.
- Cold sterilization. The process of cold sterilization can involve chemicals, radiation, and membranes—anything but a high-temperature method. Note that the CDC does not recommend this type or sterilization.
Using gloves in the workplace
Gloves protect both you and your client from exposure to blood and bodily fluids, as they prevent the transfer of microorganisms.
Studies show that more than half of healthcare workers are actually allergic to natural rubber latex gloves. Allergic reactions include:
- Hand perspiration
- Allergic rhinoconjunctivitis
- Shortness of breath
- Open lesions 48 to 96 hours after contact
To be safe, use nitrile or vinyl gloves. Keep powder-free gloves in stock as well, in case you or your client is sensitive to powder.
Note that correctly-fitting latex and nitrile gloves should be snug and secure on the hands. Vinyl gloves, on the other hand, do not fit snugly and are baggy.
The proper use of gloves
These are the guidelines for the proper use of gloves:
- Wash and dry your hands thoroughly before putting on gloves. Hand washing must last at least 30 seconds before and after each procedure.
- Apply Seal Skin, Vaseline, or other protective coatings on the hands before putting on gloves for an extra barrier of protection.
- Change gloves if you touch anything other than your client or the machines and products being used for the procedure. This includes your hair, glasses, door handles, and phone.
In the next installment of our guide, we discuss the use of needles and the step-by-step process for sanitizing.
Want a more thorough discussion on proper microblading sanitation and sterilization? Enroll in any of our beginner microblading courses! We provide a comprehensive education and training program that involves:
- The history of microblading
- Color theory
- Different microblading stroke techniques
- Choosing and dealing with different kinds of clients
- Marketing your microblading business
- And many others!
We also provide hands-on training where you get to perform microblading on a real, live client. Click here to see our full list of classes.