SPCP Best Practices Committee COVID-19 Return to Work Guidance

SPCP Covid19 Return to Work Guidance English_Spanish

The link above will download a PDF of an English and Spanish version of this document:                                                                             


Return to Work Guidance for the Permanent Cosmetic Professional

Industry professionals will face a variety of challenges as they begin returning to work. Under no circumstance should clients be admitted to our workplace until local authorities have granted permission. As a community, we are already aware of safe practices, and this will continue; however, extra steps will be needed, especially in the beginning. In that artists are working in different work settings and locations, consideration must be evaluated, adjusted, and planned to their own needs and business environment. Once the permanent cosmetic professional feels comfortable scheduling clients, consider a very limited schedule in the beginning to assess protocols and adjust as necessary.

First Steps

Ensure there is a sufficient supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) and cleaning/disinfecting supplies before accepting clients. The amount and type of supplies required per client will increase significantly. Supplies needed during this time may be harder to obtain and likely will cost more.


  • Masks should be available for both artists and clients and changed for each client.
  • A second layer of protection, such as face shields, should be considered for artists.
  • Disposable aprons, sleeves, caps, or gowns provide a layer of protection; lab coats or other fabrics are not appropriate unless professionally laundered to healthcare specs and are fresh for each client.
  • The artist should not wear long sleeves or jewelry.
  • A handwashing sink should be available to both artists and clients with hand sanitizer on- site.
  • Have large plastic bags for clients’ personal items if they are not leaving these items in their car.
  • Adequately stock EPA-registered disinfectant wipes and liquids.
  • Have an increased supply of paper towels for more frequent handwashing, including client use.
  • Written protocols for cleaning and disinfection should be established.
  • Some are considering use of an air purifier with HEPA filtration to reduce the level of exposure in the procedure room; they should be effective for viral filtration.
  • Each professional should create their own set of protocols if working in a multi-service facility with multiple staff/employees. Each service will face different levels of exposure.


Client Consultation

Many are reconsidering face-to-face consultation appointments and are conducting them virtually and/or at the scheduled appointment time. Modification to client intake forms and information provided to clients should be expected.


  • Update website information explaining any changes being made.
  • Send emails to existing clientele explaining studio protocol changes and what clients should expect.
  • Create a client checklist to include their personal and family members’ health, quarantine, travel and COVID-19 exposure history, including results of any testing performed.
  • Consult with an insurance company regarding COVID-19 liability as it concerns artists and businesses, employees, and clients.
  • Add COVID-19 precautions that are being taken within the studio to the client information packet and/or informed consent.
  • Clients can complete forms online with auto sign.
  • Aftercare instructions can also be provided electronically with intake forms.
  • Determine a payment structure to avoid handling cash, checks, or credit cards.
  • Establish a plan in advance for taking before and after photos.


Client Arrival

With multi-use offices/studios, clients may be asked to use the restroom before they leave home, and refrain from using the office restroom. It is important clients come alone and wait in their cars until called, and the artist has performed handwashing for 20 seconds with soap and warm water. Once within the establishment, and the door locked to only prevent unauthorized entry, the client should place all belongings, including cell phones, into a bin lined with a plastic bag and immediately apply the mask provided beside the bin. The client is then guided to the handwashing station to wash their hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds and go directly to the procedure area. Some artists may request the clients don gloves.


  • Take care of any phone calls necessary before starting the day with clients.  Phones should not be used while clients are there.
  • Confirm appointments personally by phone and review current and the past 14-day health history 24 hours in advance, including possible exposure incidents.
  • Artists may wish to reconsider cancellation fee policies for those clients who feel unwell and may not otherwise cancel if they will lose money.
  • Allow adequate time for cleaning/disinfecting between clients, including doorknobs, sinks, restrooms, and procedure areas.
  • Establish a specific area for completed forms by clients if using paper forms; clipboards, pens, etc., must be disinfected.


Client Skin Prep and Tattooing

 Permanent cosmetic professionals know and understand appropriate cleansing and disinfection techniques to ensure clients’ safety. They also know how to conduct procedures safely. As a reminder, gloves are to be worn when touching the client, even during brow mapping, or other design work. Talking should be kept at a minimum and explained to the client that more particulates are expelled during conversation. There is also evidence that nasal breathing will produce less moisture than mouth breathing, and the nasal passage is a first line of defense

The SPCP Best Practices Committee has discussed that in the early return to work stages, professionals may wish to consider only brow tattooing to avoid other potentially infectious materials – OPIM or all fluids under universal or standard precautions. Clients should wear masks, especially since they often sneeze during brow procedures. Scar camouflage and nipple/areola tattooing fall into relatively the same exposure category of brow tattooing. While many will wish to perform eyeliner tattooing soon after, eyeliner procedures pose a potential risk of transmission. Lip tattooing is considered to carry a much higher risk.


Aftercare Instructions

Clients will likely have received an electronic version of aftercare instructions, but it is important to review them verbally. It is also critical for the client to inform you if they exhibit any signs of COVID-19 after the procedure. If the artist has been exposed to a client who soon-after develops symptoms, the artist must follow local mandates which will likely include canceling all clients for the next 14 days.


Additional Information

 The Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals will continue to update information as it becomes available. Visit SPCP.org/Covid19 for more information.


Material provided in this section is for information purposes. All statements and positions provided by the SPCP do not constitute law, rules, or regulations, but are meant as guidance for the permanent cosmetic professional to develop best practices.



SPCP 04.26.2020


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