Every person at one time in their life has had a haircut from a salon but did you know that salons too have standards that they must adhere to?
In 2008, Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) developed guidelines for hair dressers to ensure hygiene and safety in the fast-growing beauty industry.
The US713:2008, (Requirements for hygiene in commercial skin penetration, hairdressing, and beauty and natural therapy) salon guidelines were developed to ensure practitioners and beauty schools conform to a code of conduct while doing their business.
The Standard developed would also trigger competition among beauty and care service providers, parlor operators, beauty schools and beauty products makers and distributors.
What is a salon?
A beauty salon or beauty parlor, or sometimes beauty shop, is an establishment dealing with cosmetic treatments for men and women. Other variations of this type of business include hair salons and spas.
There is a distinction between a beauty salon and a hair salon and although many small businesses do offer both sets of treatments; beauty salons provide extended services related to skin health, facial aesthetics, foot care, nail manicures and many other services.
Salon Quality requirements;
The standard states that Operators (barbers, beauticians or hairdressers) involved in any procedure, ranging from hairdressing to skin penetration, should protect their customers and themselves by developing safe and hygienic work practices.
Requirements for operators’ (barbers, beauticians or hairdressers) personal hygiene are;
Hands shall be washed thoroughly with water and soap or an antibacterial cleanser and dried with disposable paper towels then disinfected before treating every client and after any activity which may contaminate the hands.
Operators should always wear clean outer clothing or a clean over-garment when attending to a client.
Other protective attire that should be worn include:
- disposable gloves when conducting skin penetration practices
- aprons and gloves when mixing chemicals;
- Protective wear when using sharps such as razors, scissors, clippers and needles and chemicals; and
- Protective eye wear when conducting any skin penetration practice.
- Operators should not smoke, eat or chew gum when attending a client.
Challenges in the saloon sector
There is a significant risk of transmitting infectious diseases through skin penetration, hairdressing, and beauty and natural therapy operations. Operators therefore need to adopt appropriate procedures to minimize these risks.
Skin penetration, hairdressing and beauty and natural therapy procedures pose particular public health risks if they are not conducted in a safe and hygienic manner. These risks may be to the operator, as well as the client, and can include the transmission of infectious diseases such as HIV-AIDS and Hepatitis B. Instruments such as razors, scissors and clippers may potentially break the skin surface and come in contact with blood and body fluids providing an opportunity for the spread of infections such as HIV and Hepatitis.
Additional details about the acceptable salon requirements can be obtained from Uganda Standard: US 713:2008
The writer is a Senior Public Relations Officer at Uganda National Bureau of Standards.