Hygiene and sanitation in the salon cannot be over emphasized, whether you have a stationed or mobile salon, it is very important so as to prevent infection and cross infection.

Here are the things you need to know about decontamination in the salon and work space.


Decontamination is the removal of disease causing microorganisms, blood, visible debris or residue on an item’s surface

There are three levels of decontamination.

These are





Sanitization method of decontamination is the lowest level of decontamination. This involves the cleaning and removal of all visible dirt and debris from all tools, implements, and table tops. This includes dusting, cleaning and washing with liquid soap, warm water and a clean nail brush. This method will reduce germs but does not completely kill all bacteria and fungi. Sanitization controls the exposure to transient organisms.


Disinfection is the second level of decontamination. This involves the use of disinfectants to get rid of most of the bacteria and viruses. The most common in salons is the Barbicide solution, also Isopropyl alcohol can be used to disinfect manicure and pedicure tools.

It is advisable to follow appropriate ratios when mixing these chemicals as it can be dangerous if not done correctly. Safety gloves and glasses must be worn where necessary to protect skin from direct contact.

There is a difference in disinfectants and antiseptics: Disinfectants destroy harmful microorganisms while antiseptics slow the growth of microorganisms.


This is the highest level of decontamination. The word “Sterile” means free from bacteria or other living microorganisms; totally clean.

Sterilization is the process where all the living organisms on an object are destroyed. To properly sterilize the tools a steam autoclave or bead sterilizer can be used. This uses very high temperature to kill all germs and bacteria.


In the salon there are three types of tools,

  1. Non-porous and non-absorbent items (hard materials that are generally reusable, do not absorb liquid and can be disinfected).
  2. Porous and/or absorbent items (disposables- one use only or require specific cleaning procedure)
  3. Self-disinfecting items (doesn’t support bacteria or fungi growth). Example include nail polishes, primers, acrylic monomer and powder etc.

Non porous items-  Metal, glass or plastic, this include scissors, cuticle pusher, nippers, drill bits etc. All this tools can be and should be cleaned and disinfected.

Porous items– Include most files, cloth, wood, buffer blocks, orange wood stick and other absorbent materials. If any of these items are damaged or destroyed during the cleaning process or come in contact with blood must be disposed after one use. Towels, aprons etc should be washed at the end of the day.



Thanks for reading.

Published by


Hi there, I'm Abimbola, A Certified Nail Artist, Nails and Lifestyle blogger. I will be sharing professional nail care tips, my journey as a Nail Artist, faith based topics, product review and lifestyle tips. Check my about page for more information. I'm happy to have you join me!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s