New Article From Nails Magazine, “Dust Up Over Nail Salon Air Quality” Explains The Ins and Outs of Nail Salon Ventilation Regulation

Understanding nail salon ventilation regulations can be a daunting task.  In an article published by Nails Magazine this month, “Dust Up Over Nail Salon Air Quality“, author Sree Roy goes over the ins and outs of nail salon ventilation, regulation and implementation.

Focusing on the spike in awareness in salon ventilation after a New York Times expose, the topic of proper ventilation is now coming to the forefront of conversation in both newly opening and currently operating nails salons.

To read this highly informative article head over to Nails Magazine.

NY State to Implement Stringent Ventilation Requirements Oct. 3rd!

“Nail salons, new and existing, will be required to have ventilation that complies with the 2015 International Mechanical Code, a voluntary standard set by the International Code Council, an organization that devises minimum safety standards for workplaces and other spaces. There are approximately 5,000 salons in New York State. Salons that do not comply risk fines and possible loss of their license.”

Read the full article from The New York Times

 

San Mateo County Healthy Nail Recognition Salon Program in The News

Recently there has been a flood of information in the news media about the health risks associated with working in nail salons.  Many salons simply don’t have the proper equipment in place to keep their workers safe from occupational hazards related to the inhalation of nail salon chemical fumes and dusts.   But there is light at the end of the tunnel…

Some local authorities have started programs that help educate and facilitate nail salons in their area to get the proper training and equipment to properly ventilate their salons, keeping their workers safe from over exposure of nail salon chemicals.

One such example in San Mateo County, California has implemented their Healthy Nail Salon Recognition Program for salons in the San Francisco bay area to certify healthy nail salons and even offer rebates on source capture ventilation equipment for those who participate in the program.

New York Times Article Brings to Light Health Issues for Nail Salon Workers

In a new article series titled “Unvarnished”, New York Times writer Sarah Maslin Nir examines the working conditions and potential health risks endured by nail salon workers.

In the her article “Perfect Nails, Poisoned Workers” the author delves into the many health issues nail salon workers face on a day to day basis.

One big hurdle nail technicians face is overexposure to nail salon product vapors and nail dust.  These two factors are the biggest threats to a worker’s respiratory health.  These vapors and dust are part of every day life for nail techs.  Many people in the industry don dust face masks as some level of protection but the sad truth is, these masks do provide some protection against dust inhalation, they provide no protection for  the chemical vapors.   The chemical vapors simply pass through the mask and into the wearer’s lungs.

But there is a solution!  A certain type of salon ventilation called “source capture” ventilation (also sometimes called local ventilation) uses a capture hood and hose to draw the vapors and dust out of the breathing zone of the nail tech and into the system, where a 3 stage filter system traps dusts and adsorbs chemical vapor using advanced HEPA and activated carbon technology enhanced with an energy field.  This type of filtration, referred to as “eHEPA” filtration is more effective than standard systems in adsorbing and decomposing harmful chemical nail vapors found in nail salons.

YOUTUBE BANNER LED WITH DUST

To read the entire article, head on over to the New York Times webpage

Healthy Air™ Slim Nails Source Capture Systems Meet Code Requirements for Nail Salon

Aerovex Systems with Healthy Air™  Technology is the first in the industry to meet building standards that require exterior ventilation. Healthy Air™  Technology is one of the most powerful and effective advanced air purification systems in the world that is uniquely designed to combine eHEPA technology with advanced activated carbon filtration, now with optional outside ventilation.

The system utilizes advanced eHEPA technology to capture submicron particles as well as microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, mold and fungi with efficiencies exceeding standard HEPA grade filters and kill these microorganisms at extremely high kill rates with the application of the energy field that permeates the filter. The system utilizes an advanced granular activated carbon filter in combination with the energy field to provide sufficient dwell tome to effectively adsorb and decompose VOC’s and odor.

nailpro

 

The Nail Source Capture System is an highly effective nail dust, vapor/odor and airborne pathogen source capture system. With 200 cfm of suction at the capture hood, the Healthy Air™ Nails Source Capture System provides 4 times the required airflow to remove and capture airborne nail dust, vapors/odors, and pathogens. Clean air is exhausted towards the floor with a quiet but powerful centrifugal motor.

An adapter is available to allow venting the unit to the outside.

Salon Building Codes

Aerovex Systems Healthy Air™ Nails Source Capture System meets and exceeds the new “Breathing Zone” Protection Regulatory Requirements.

With 200 cfm of suction at the capture hood, Healthy Air™ technology provides 4 times the required airflow to remove and capture airborne nail dust, vapors/odors, and pathogens. Clean air is exhausted towards the floor with a quiet but powerful centrifugal motor. An adaptor is available to allow venting the unit to the outside.

Nail Salon Ventilation Regulation Changes:

2012 International Mechanical Building Code (IMC) Table 403.3 (h)

(h) For nail salons, each nail station shall be provided with a source capture system capable of exhausting not less than 50 cfm per station.

Source Capture Change Significance:

Footnote “h” to Table 403.3 has been modified to require nail salons to have a source capture system at each nail station. Based on the definition of “Source Capture System”, the exhaust from a station in a nail salon is required to capture the air contaminants at their source and terminate them to the outdoor air.

OSHA and the Nail Manufacturer Council for Safety (NMC) Update Guidelines for Controlling and Minimizing Inhalation Exposure to Nail Products

Guidelines for Controlling and Minimizing Inhalation Exposure to Nail Products

These guidelines outline steps that nail professionals can take to improve workplace safety by minimizing inhalation exposure to potentially irritating or harmful substances. It is important for salon professionals to utilize techniques that ensure the nail services given are performed in the safest manner possible. Fortunately, when the proper steps are taken, it is easy to safely perform professional nail services and avoid excessive inhalation of dusts or vapors. Minimizing inhalation exposure is an important way to ensure that nail salon products are properly and safely handled.

What is Product Overexposure?

Nearly every substance on Earth has both a safe and potentially unsafe level of exposure. Injury may result if these safe levels are exceeded repeatedly or for prolonged periods. For example, inhaling excessive levels of certain vapors or dusts found in salons for prolonged periods may result in overexposure to these substances. In general, the vapors found in properly ventilated salon air have established OSHA safe limits and are well below these levels. However, not all salons have proper ventilation and those that don’t may not understand its importance.

Ventilation is an important way of improving the salon environment for customers and can also create a more pleasant workplace for salon professionals. Proper ventilation can help sensitive individuals avoid symptoms such as irritated eyes, nose or throat, headaches, difficulty breathing, nervousness or drowsiness. The best way to prevent inhalation overexposure is by controlling the amount of vapors and dust in salon air. One of the very best ways to ensure safe working conditions is to use these guidelines to improve salon air quality.

Improving Salon Air Quality

Some salon professionals mistakenly believe that ventilation systems are solely for controlling strong odors, when in fact, odors are not the reason for ventilating. Just because a substance smells strange or unpleasant does not mean it is risky to breathe. The odor of a substance does not indicate whether it is safe or harmful. Dirty socks provide a good example. They don’t smell good, but they aren’t harmful to breathe.

Don’t ventilate to control odors; ventilate to control vapors and dusts. It is especially important to control the air quality of your breathing zone. Think of your breathing zone as an invisible sphere that extends two feet from your mouth. Your breathing air comes from this zone and working safely and using proper ventilation helps ensure the breathing zone is a source of high-quality air.

A great way to ensure good salon air quality is to use a combination of: 1) a properly maintained HVAC system, 2) a professional HEPA room air cleaner, and 3) source capture system.

dp filters

HVAC system – The general room ventilation and air-conditioning systems in a salon are classified as “Heating, Ventilation and Air-Conditioning” (HVAC) systems. HVAC systems are “built-in” to the salon and are designed to exchange air inside the salon with fresh air from the outside. Typical salon HVAC filters remove some dusts, pollens, etc., but cannot remove vapors or the smallest dust particles. Special HVAC filters designed with replaceable activated carbon panels and electrostatic dust filtering material are recommended which will remove residual salon vapor and dust not captured by a source capture system or by a room air purifier. The adsorbent panels eventually become saturated, making them ineffective, and, therefore, must be replaced on a regular basis, e.g. four times per year.

1)  Remember that to be effective, all ventilation systems must be properly maintained and cleaned on a regular basis. A local HVAC specialist that can advise salons on installing, repairing, cleaning and maintaining salon ventilation systems can be found on the Internet or in the phone directory under “Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning”. These skilled professionals can diagnose the salon’s air quality and ventilation systems and provide useful solutions and advice. They can ensure the system is adequate for the salon and keep it working at its peak capacity. Whether the salon is being heated, air conditioned or neither, the HVAC fan should be in the “On” position if the building is occupied.

totw good view

2)  Professional HEPA room air cleaner – use of a stand-alone salon HEPA room air cleaner designed specifically to remove salon vapors and dusts is also recommended to help further clean the salon’s air and to help keep it recirculating throughout the salon. It is best to use a professional quality air cleaner and avoid air cleaners designed for “home use”. Home air cleaners are designed to remove pollen, cigarette smoke, etc., which is not the primary concern in a salon (there should never be smoking in a salon!). Dusts and vapors are the primary concern. Air cleaning devices that utilize HEPA filters are designed to remove most dusts from the air in the immediate vicinity of the air cleaning device, but will have much less effect on the breathing zone of nail technicians. Even so, they can be effective for removing fine dusts from the salon air. Newer types of filters referred to as electrically enhanced filters or polarized filters can be considered electronic versions of HEPA filters and are commonly called eHEPA filters. These claim to have the effectiveness of HEPA type filters, but allow substantially more air flow to pass through the air cleaning device. Both HEPA and eHEPA filters are designed to remove particles as small as 100th the diameter of a human hair and when used properly and according to manufacturer’s directions can provide dust removal benefits to salons. Some activated charcoal air cleaner devices utilize a dust pre-filter that is machine washable or replaceable. These devices are also considered effective ways to lower airborne dust concentrations. Note: NEVER rely solely on stand-alone air filtration in the salon.

Air cleaners that produce tiny amounts of ozone (parts-per-billion) may neutralize some odors, but they do not remove vapors or dusts. Ozone is a hazardous air contaminant, even at very low concentrations. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has warned all consumers against using air cleaners that release ozone due to the health risks they create. These devices sometimes cause watery eyes, runny nose, coughing, chest tightness, metallic tastes in the mouth, shortness of breath, and blurred vision. These are not effective for controlling dusts or vapors in salons. Healthy people, as well as those with respiratory difficulty, can experience breathing problems when exposed to even relatively low levels of ozone, e.g. 40 parts-per-billion.

new nail unit with led usable

3)  Source Capture Systems – are designed to capture nail vapors and dust particles at their source of release and then extract them from the breathing zone, protecting the health of those working in the salon. At a minimum, these systems should draw 50 cfm of airflow when measured within 6″ of the area where the dusts and vapors are released. A three-stage filtration system is recommended and should include an activated carbon filter with a minimum of 2 lbs. of activated carbon. Avoid systems with little or no activated carbon. Additionally, some systems are equipped with eHEPA filters which have enhanced dust collecting and vapor adsorption capability. When properly designed and correctly used, Source Capture Systems protect the breathing zone of both the nail technician and client. These systems are the most effective way to control and prevent inhalation of salon dusts, vapors and other airborne contaminants.

Source capture systems that return filtered air into the salon are not as effective as those designed to vent to the outdoors and are more costly to maintain, so when possible, source capture systems should be ventilated to the outside. However, when this is impractical, systems that clean the air and return it to the salon can be very useful if properly maintained.

Selecting and Properly Using Dust Masks

Certain services, such as filing or shaping artificial nail enhancements, can generate large amounts of dusts in the breathing zone of the salon worker. While performing nail services, disposable dust masks can be used to control and minimize inhalation of dusts. Clients are not likely to be exposed to excessive amounts of dusts, so masks are not recommended for them. Dust masks prevent the breathing of dust particles, but cannot prevent the inhalation of vapors. Dust masks should never be used in place of proper three part ventilation as described in the previous section. Even so, when properly used, the correct mask can be an important way to prevent inhalation of excessive amounts of dust particles and is especially useful if you have pre-existing asthma, allergies, or other breathing related conditions.

The best disposable masks are those approved by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Masks with “N95” ratings are the most effective for salon workers. To be effective, dust masks must fit well, be used properly and also disposed of regularly. Be sure to follow manufacturer’s instructions when using these important tools. Masks without this rating, such as surgical masks, will not provide enough protection and should not be used in the salon setting. Surgical masks may help prevent the spread of germs, but will not protect you from dusts.

Important Tips to Remember

 

  • Always read, understand and follow all manufacturers’ directions and heed all product warning labels.

 

  • An effective exhaust system provides individual ventilation to each separate work table or station.

 

  • Salons should have their own ventilation systems and avoid sharing with adjacent businesses.

 

  • The minimum recommended amount of fresh air per occupant for salons is 25 ft.³ per minute.

 

  • Source Capture system should be designed to withdraw at least 50 ft.³ per minute of air from the breathing zone at every station

 

  • Source Capture System filters should contain an activated carbon filter with a minimum of 2 lbs. of activated carbon.

 

  • Use professional HEPA room air cleaners; avoid devices designed for home use and only use air cleaners in conjunction with a source capture system.

 

  • Never use fans or open windows in place of proper three part ventilation.

 

  • Odor does not indicate whether a vapor is safe or potentially hazardous.

 

  • Don’t ventilate to control odors; ventilate to control vapors and dusts.

 

  • Turn on all general ventilation systems (HVAC) during work hours and use HEPA room air cleaners along with source capture systems while performing services.

 

  • Replace all filters regularly and according to the manufacturer’s directions.

 

  • Avoid using ozone generating air cleaning devices.

 

  • Dispose of all product-contaminated materials, e.g. paper towels, gauze, cotton, or other absorbent material, in a sealed container or bag.

 

  • Use trash cans with a self-closing lid and place one at every work table.

 

  • Empty trash cans several times per day and change liners daily.

 

  • Dispose of waste products according to manufacturer’s instructions or Safety Data Sheets, SDS (aka MSDS).

 

  • Properly ventilate storage area where professional products are kept.

 

  • Keep top exhaust vents on work tables clear of any obstruction, e.g., cloth towels.

 

  • Keep all product containers tightly closed when not in use.

 

  • Avoid working from bulk size containers of products when performing services. Instead, transfer products from large containers to smaller, properly labeled containers. Perform this task in a well-ventilated area.

 

  • Use dappen dish with small opening and cover it when not in use.

 

  • Wear properly fitted N95 rated dust mask to prevent inhaling dust particles.

 

  • Do not smoke in the salon and post “No Smoking” signs in the shop’s work area.

 

  • Read and understand the product’s Safety Data Sheets (SDS, aka MSDS) before use and know where the SDS can  be quickly located.

 

  • Maintain the latest copy of the state cosmetology board’s rules and regulations.

 

The Nail Salon Industry is Booming

The nail salon industry is booming; the number of nail salon workers has tripled over the last ten years to more than 500,000 workers. Like drycleaners, nail salons are frequently located in store fronts or strip malls. Many times nail salons are built-out in previous occupied tenant space without adapting the HVAC system for the vast variety of chemicals used.

Headline: Nail Salon Chemicals Worry Health Officials!

Most nail salon workers are young females who work long days inhaling chemicals and also contact chemicals which are absorbed through the skin. In general, these chemicals are not regulated by the FDA and contain VOCs or solvents within the cosmetic products they apply or use to remove previously applied cosmetics. These vapors, as well as dusts, are generated close to the breathing zone of the workers and customers.

Inhalation exposure to these chemicals are proven to cause ocular and upper respiratory irritation and central nervous system effects such as headache, nausea, and dizziness. Source Capture Ventilation eliminates chemical vapor inhalation by exhausting the technicians breathing zone and prevents vapors and odors from escaping into the salon air or migrating into the air of adjacent tenants.

To avoid spreading chemical vapors to neighboring businesses, nail salons should not share the same ventilation system with another business and should be under negative air pressure in relation to adjacent spaces. To maintain negative pressure, the salon should exhaust slightly more air than is supplied so that any leakage of vapors will not enter adjacent businesses.

 

 

1. Right-to-know training for workers to communicate the risk of products used. Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) must be reviewed by ownership with their employees and copies maintained on-site.

2. Substitution of less toxic, volatile products during purchasing. 30 states have restricted or banned the use of liquid methyl methacrylate monomer; an ingredient used in some artificial nail products.

3. Providing adequate general ventilation of at least 25 CFM outside air per person in the work space. The nail salon must not share a common HVAC system or duct work with another tenant space.

4. *Installation of source capture ventilation systems at the manicure and pedicure stations. Special attention must also be focused on where products are mixed. A whole room salon air purifier designed specifically to remove salon vapors/odors and nail dust should be used to cleanse the salon air.

5. Installation of filters designed specifically to remove formaldehyde and other salon vapors and dusts from the building’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning system are strongly recommended. A building’s ventilation system, whether in a strip mall or a stand-alone structure, is called the HVAC system. This stands for Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning. This is your first line of attack. The HVAC system brings fresh air to the salon and pushes it from one room to another.

To avoid spreading chemical vapors to neighboring businesses, nail salons should not share the same ventilation system with another business and should be under negative air pressure in relation to adjacent spaces. To maintain negative pressure, the salon should exhaust slightly more air than is supplied so that any leakage of vapors will not enter adjacent businesses.

 

 

This system needs to be professionally maintained by a specialist. The specialist will change the filters, and properly balance and clean the system every year. An HVAC system removes mold, mildew, dust, etc., providing relatively fresh air to a building. Most salons are only using residential, standard HVAC fiberglass filters, which are inadequate for the removal of salon specific chemical vapors and dust. Special Salon HVAC filters are available which have an increased dust holding capacity and are composed of rinse-able layers of electrostatic polypropylene grids that collect and trap dust. Designed specifically for salons these filters are composed of an interchangeable activated carbon panels which captures and removes salon specific chemical vapors. Source capture ventilation, room air purifiers and HVAC filters designed specifically for removing salon vapors, mists and dusts have been developed and are highly effective for improving salon air quality.

6. Dispensing products in small containers with openings just large enough for the application brush. Keep lids on product containers sealed during non-use.
7. Discarding waste properly and promptly. Chemical-soaked gauze pads and cotton balls should be placed in a sealed bag before dispensing of them in a metal trash can. The lid should be self-closing and the trash can liner changed at least daily. Proper storage of chemicals.

8. Frequent washing of hands. Nitrile safety gloves should be worn that are resistant to solvents. Latex gloves do not protect against solvent exposure.

9. Good personal hygiene by workers including no eating, drinking or smoking at their work stations or near stored chemicals.

10. Checking the pressure differential between the nail salon and adjacent tenant space. The nail salon should be at negative pressure in relation to the adjacent space. Walls separating the salon from other business should have no holes, gaps and cracks (including above the drop ceiling).

11. Reviewing ventilation discharge points from the nail salon for potential re-circulation of solvent vapors in adjacent tenant HVAC systems or windows/doors.

12. Disposal of unwanted nail polish, waste acetone and other solvent/chemical waste products as hazardous waste. Acetone and other waste products must not be poured down the sink or toilet or put into general trash.

*According to internationally known salon industry scientist and chemist, Doug Schoon:
“If you are working with a source capture ventilation system (SCV); you don’t want or need to use a face mask. Even a high quality, properly fitting N-95 dust mask won’t work as well as a source capture ventilation system. Why? When properly fitted, an N-95 dust mask WILL protect against inhalation of tiny airborne dust particles, but NOT vapors. SCV systems prevent exposure by collecting both dusts and vapors- keeping both out of the nail technician’s breathing zone and salon air.

When properly maintained and the carbon filters are changed regularly, SCV systems are a great way to help ensure salon air quality remains safe and everyone is breathing comfortably during working hours. Several dust collecting systems are great too and in general, I do recommend their use in salons. Even so, dust collection systems should be used in conjunction with another ventilation system which lowers exposure to vapors. Both dusts and vapors must be properly controlled. SVC systems do both, which is why I fully support their use in salons.”
LANDLORDS….
Acetone, other nail polish removers and nail polishes are flammable. The aforementioned controls are also essential to minimize potential fire hazards. Fire department regulations vary from city to city including how much flammable liquid you are allowed to store at your business and if you are required to store flammables in a fireproof cabinet.

 

3 Weeks of Use with the Healthy Air Nails Source Capture with Nail Technician, Educator, and Author Ruth Windsor

Source capture ventilation is the most effective way to control nail dust and odor in today’s modern nail salons.  With the release of new Healthy Air technology, Aerovex Systems offers the state of the art in nail salon ventilation.

Every Healthy Air Source Capture System utilizes patented eHEPA technology in combination with advanced activated carbon filtration to trap, adsorb, and decompose pollutants at the source.

But don’t take our word for it, read what long time nail technician, author and educator Ruth Windsor has to say about the Healthy Air Nails Source Capture System from Aerovex.  Thanks Ruth!

 

Week 1

Got to use my Healthy Air System to with a guest. I did a re-white and it truly lives up to its promise. It was quiet, sucked up dust and vapors. I am booked tomorrow and will see how that goes, but I am really impressed right now. I was so amazed watching the dust just being sucked right into the hose. Thank you Jeff Cardarella and Aerovex Systems for making a great machine and helping protect my health.   – Ruth Windsor

 

 

Week 2

I have finished the second week of testing my new Aerovex Systems Source Capture System with Healthy Air Technology. Thursday was my busy day and usually on Friday after breathing in the dust and vapors I am sneezing, eyes watering, and just feel miserable and my day is wasted spent on the couch and popping antihistamines. Not this week, I was feeling great and was able to get so much done. Then I worked today for 5 hours and still feel great. I have a couple clients that wear Backscratchers Extreme and normally breathing in the vapors would aggravate my nose and eyes, but nothing.  I barely could smell it at all. And if you work like me I am all over/on top of my work space. I even used it while doing a pedicure, not so much for the vapor aspect, but to see how it would work. Dust be gone while using the hand file and the electric file. Minimal dust and no vapors it was definitely worth the investment. Stay tuned to this channel more to come.  – Ruth Windsor

 

Slim Black Dual Circle w LED w SEAL

Week 3

I have a small 8×11 room and yes, it is packed (over packed) with my many treasures. And, here is my week 3 update. No allergy issues and still no antihistamines. I am very impressed with this fact alone; as it helps me to live and have a better quality of my days. As you can see I have a lot of equipment and with the way my room is set up, I have placed my system to the left of my station. I am right handed and my tools are on my right – having it to the left doesn’t over crowd me. Also, having it here allows me to also use it when doing my pedicures and I don’t have to rearrange my room/setup. The hose is long enough so that I can use it overhead when filing or lay it on the table when I am doing tasks like shortening or re-whites.

The flexibility of the hose is an awesome bonus. The dust compared to what I use to get to the little that is shown below now is what makes this the second best feature.   Doug Schoon has preached to us for many years about protecting our breathing space and I may be a day late and a dollar short, but I am now on the band wagon and kicking myself for not doing it sooner. If you are not protecting yours – invest in your health and safety now.  – Ruth Windsor

 

 



	

Why Choose Aerovex?

For over 25 years Aerovex Systems has been dedicated to making the air you breathe better.  As a founding member of the Professional Keratin Smoothing Council, Aerovex Systems has been a leader in promoting proper ventilation in both hair and nail salon environments, focusing on proper keratin hair smoothing ventilation and source capture ventilation for nail salon dust and odor.

Most recently Aerovex Systems has teamed up with Healthy Air, Inc. in developing state of the art source capture systems for both keratin treatments and nail salon applications.

So why choose Aerovex?  The answer is simple…

Doug Schoon Presents the Top Ten Myths Related to Artificial Nails

Myths.  They are all around us.  Whether it be urban legend or something that is related to our everyday life, it is important to dispel fiction from facts.  This is especially important when it comes to things that you deal with everyday life and affect you directly, like your profession.

Doug Schoon, scientist and internationally known expert on the nail salon industry has laid out 10 popular myths related to artificial nails that will help modern nail technicians separate fact from fiction.  Highlighted in this post is myth number 9 on Mr. Schoon’s list, “You should wear a mask when you do nails”.

Click Here To Read Doug's Article

When proper measures are taken, such as using a source capture ventilation system in your salon, nail dust masks are not necessary.  By using these systems you capture the dust and vapor at the source of the problem, not allowing them to migrate into the salon air.  Masks might work well for stopping dust, but have no effect on stopping harmful vapors from entering your body.  Source capture systems take in this harmful vapor where the work is being done and capture them in a thick bed of activated carbon.

Check out this myth and others here as stated by Mr. Schoon here.