Posts Tagged ‘sanitation and disinfection’

Cosmetology Exam Legal and Safety Questions

Friday, April 22nd, 2011

Cosmetology DisinfectantTaking the cosmetology test may seem scary, but it’s the first step to a wonderful career.  While the topics covered in the cosmetology exam regarding Hair, Skin, Nails, etc. are generally the same, each state has unique legal and ethical questions on the cosmetology exam.  Usually, there are about ten questions in this area.  These questions will only pertain to your state so its important to review them on your state board website along with a cosmetology study guide program like Salon Prep.  Select your state here, then click the link at the bottom of the  page for your state’s official cosmetology exam information.  Read on for some examples of information that may vary from state to state regarding legal and ethical information.  Salon Prep contains study guide and practice exams on disinfection and sanitation, but state specific regulations change quickly so make sure you’re up to date.

Disinfecting – Boiling tools is not an accepted way to disinfect tools.  Use a disinfecting solution for non electrical tools like clipper blades and scissors which need to be immersed for at least ten minutes.  If left in too long, the tools can erode, so follow manufacturers’ directions when using and replacing disinfectant liquids.  A high level spray can be used in some states.

Hygiene – Non-disposable cups may be provided at a salon or spa if disposable cups are also provided and properly disposed of.  There is no requirement for clients to wash their hands before services are performed, but practitioners must wear single use gloves.  If any sores are seen, cosmetology professionals must wait until they are healed.   Towels and cloths used do not need to be bleached, but should be washed and laundered and put away in a clean place.  Used towels and clothes should be put in a container or basket away from other things in the salon or spa area.

Licenses and Facilities – You can provide your Individual Taxpayer Identification Number instead of Social Security number when applying for a practitioner certification or facility license.  If you are moving your location, you need to obtain a new facility permit and the facility needs to move to a physical address (not a PO Box).  If you are working in a hospital setting or long term care facility, you do not need to have a cosmetology facility license.  If the person is working independently from the facility, hospital or care center, then the practitioner would need a license. 

Inspections can be intimidating and nerve racking.  There is usually a checklist available for review before you’re inspected.  The rules vary by state so make sure you review the requirements in your area while you study online with Salon Prep.

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A Day in the Life of a Cosmetologist

Thursday, October 7th, 2010

If you’ve made the decision to become a cosmetologist, you may be wondering what a typical day consists of in terms of staff  and client interactions as well as the tasks that are performed throughout the day.  It’s not likely that you’ll go from obtaining your license to immediately opening your own salon.  For the purpose of this article, we’ll focus on a salon employee.

Depending on the salon or establishment a typical day may begin with setting up the tools you’ll use for the day.  Many cosmetologists, especially those who work in several salons, maintain their own kit of hair dryers, irons, brushes, even an assortment of dyes.  You’ll need to follow all the policies on sanitation and disinfection for your tools throughout the day to ensure your clients’ (and your own) safety.  At the start of your shift, you may even take a glance at the appointment book to see how your day will flow.  In many salons, the cosmetologists are responsible for answering the phones, making appointments and selling personal care products that the salon offers. 

If you don’t specialize in one particular area, you’ll probably have a day filled with a variety of tasks.  Your first appointment may be to shampoo, condition, cut, trim and style hair. Some salons employ a shampooer, but many do not.  You may also feel the need to advise this client on hair color options, straightening methods or long term care for their new locks.

Your next appointment may be a manicure/pedicure client.  You’ll work with the client to achieve the correct color, shape and treatments that best suit their lifestyle and appearance needs.  The rest of your day could be spent trimming a beard, giving a perm, styling a wig, giving a facial or performing scalp treatments.  All of these tasks are designed to help your clients look and feel their best. 

For cosmetologists who work in an establishment where each cosmetologist has a specialty, the interaction between cosmetologists is key to a smooth handoff from treatment to treatment.  Great salons are those where the cosmetologists are constantly sharing tips and ideas, working together to select hair color, seeking each other’s advice and generally making the clients feel as if they’re in good hands, even though they are treated by a variety of experts. 

The best cosmetologists are those who constantly update their skills in new treatments and techniques, keep up with the latest trends, and invest in continuing self-education in general.  States like Florida, Illinois and Texas require that you complete a certain amount of continuing education hours to maintain your license.  If you are already a licensed cosmetologist, tell us about your typical day.

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