The Age of Caution

By Marjorie Grimm

Director, Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals

Every era of history seems to have had its own period of unique health issues for society to deal with. At one time, people that had a disease that was considered detrimental to the health status of others were quarantined, if the condition was considered a serious health hazard to the public, or could result in the death of others. This is no longer legally acceptable in our society today. As a result there are a host of conditions that the public is surrounded by in their daily routines. Some of these conditions are simply annoying if spread, resulting in short-term illness, some are deadly.

This is the age of caution. As a society, we must be cautious on all levels of our public and private lives if we intend to survive. Our industry thrives and becomes stronger only on the trust of the public. We provide a high-ticket service at a low cost of materials to the technician. Our goal of $100.00 per hour profit is not unrealistic. We are truly fortunate. Our profession is rewarding in many aspects, financially and emotionally. Many of us spend our time as we wish as opposed to the dictates of those in a corporate structure. We have the opportunity to schedule our business hours to fit family obligations and personal preferences. However, the cost of these luxuries is not to be ignored.

We have an enormous responsibility to the general public and to our industry we represent in regard to safeguarding ourselves and others from deadly diseases that can be spread through the negligence of cross contamination of blood borne pathogens.

There have been many public programs that dealt with the psychological aspect of being numb to distasteful or detrimental elements of our era: violence, cancer on every front, death in mass proportions, and a host of other events and conditions that seem to the “norm” of our every day lives. Have we as an industry become numb to the responsibility that we have to ourselves and to our clients in regards to the precious health issues that we have under our control? Our clients want to look good and feel good about themselves, but they don’t want to die or become seriously ill in the process. These strong words are only intended to emphasize the need to treat the very source of our successes with the respect they deserve.

The binding question is…would you want a close member of your family to have procedures conducted by you? Would you feel the equipment, supplies, and the environment they would be subjected to as being above reproach? If later, that close family member were to be diagnosed with a deadly disease that could have been transmitted during a permanent cosmetic procedure, would your facility or your practices be in question? If so, and only you can honestly answer these questions for yourself, you have to change something. If you wouldn’t think of driving drunk in a school zone, or intentionally taking the life of another person for financial gain, this is the time to re-evaluate all elements of your business practices. Sterilization, sanitation and processes that prevent cross contamination must be practiced every day, each day.

Take the time to perform a self-audit of your facility, equipment, supplies, and your daily practices. If any deficiencies are even suspected, take aggressive corrective actions. It may be something as simple as hand washing techniques or as serious as the need to conduct spore testing on autoclaves, or complying with proper disposal methods for hazardous materials. Don’t be numb to the fact that the results of negligent business practices can result in death, possibly your own.

Keep our industry’s reputation pristine. If you don’t, you can ruin your life, the lives of others, and the industry that supported your success. Recognize and accept the Age of Caution.

*** This article may be reproduced and reprinted only in its entirety acknowledging the Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals.