How to Clean and Disinfect Your Nail Tools at Home

Raise your hand if you are guilty of not cleaning your nail clippers or callus removing tools after each use?  Do you think that just rinsing them off with hot water is enough? Sorry guys and gals, it is not!  We as humans carry bacteria on our bodies that when exposed to a cut in our skin, can potentially cause painful or life-threatening infections.  This is why it is required by law for nail salons to follow specific sanitizing and disinfecting procedures with their equipment.  Today’s blog is going to teach you how to take care of your tools at home by cleaning and disinfecting them, so that you don’t find yourself (or a family member) with an unwanted infection.

Cleaning your tools

Always start off by washing your hands with soap and water. Place your scrub brush into a bowl and pour 70% to 90% Isopropyl Alcohol over it until the brush is completely submerged. Allow your brush to soak for 5 minutes.  Once you know your brush is sanitized, you can use it to clean your other tools.  Add antibacterial soap to your brush and use it to scrub your nail clippers, glass nail files and callus removing tool. Your goal it to remove debris build up.  Once you are done scrubbing, rinse off the tools with hot water until all of the soap is gone.

Disinfecting your tools*

Place your nail clippers, glass nail files and callus removing tool into a clean bowl.  Again, using the Isopropyl Alcohol, cover your tools completely.  Allow them to sit in the solution for 30 minutes. If you do not have Isopropyl Alcohol, you can boil your metal tools in water for 20 minutes.  Be sure to wash your hands before picking up the disinfected tools. When soaking is complete, allow them to dry on a clean paper towel.

Storing your clean tools

Always store your clean tools away from other tools and supplies.  Never place them in a plastic bag or storage container as that can create a breeding ground for unwanted bacteria. Instead, keep them wrapped in a clean paper towel, in a designated “clean” drawer or makeup bag specifically for your nail tools.

*Please note these techniques are not directions for nail salons. Nail salons should refer to the cleaning and disinfecting requirements of their specific state, which in California can be found on the Department of Consumer Affairs barbering and cosmetology page.

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