Thursday, August 9, 2012

Love manicures and pedicures? Workers face serious health effects

Working with nail polish every day could lead to
serious health effects, experts warn.
Summertime is sandal time and one of the busiest times of year for the thousands of nail salons across North America.

The clipping, filing and polishing industry has become a popular venture.

In Canada’s Toronto alone, residents can pick from 1,152 spots to get their nails done. The state of New York has approximately 4,100 nail salons.

But while most clients see their occasional manicure and pedicure as a treat and an occasion to relax, the technicians servicing their nails are exposed to dangerous organic solvents and harsh chemicals emitted by nail polishes and nail products.

The biggest health threats come from chemicals such as formaldehyde, acetone, toluene and dibutyl phthalate.

Some of the reported health effects include
  • Asthma
  • Rashes
  • Damage to the reproductive system
  • Effects to sexual organ development in male fetuses

Experts suggest different tactics to minimize the risks to employees. For example, using spring-loaded bottles for polish remover to reduce the amount of escaping vapors, installing tilted and ventilated tables, using healthier polish brands and high-quality particle masks, updating the ventilation system to remove odors and chemicals and raising awareness among nail technicians.

One of the problems is that many workers in nail salons are recent immigrants from China or Vietnam, who may be too afraid to complain about health problems, researchers say.

Have you ever been affected by the fumes or smells in nail salons and spas? Tell us about it!

Source: The Globe and Mail

Clean the air in spas and nail salons
Air cleaners for nail salons:
5000 and 6000 Salon

When a full HVAC update or renovation project is beyond a nail salon’s budget, individual air cleaners with activated carbon and HEPA can help remove dangerous particles, chemicals and odors.

Electrocorp has developed a range of air cleaners for beauty salons and spas that feature some of the largest adsorbent surface areas for gases and fumes and the longest-lasting and most efficient filters available on the market.

The 5000 and 6000 Salon air purifiers, for example, are also equipped with a source capture attachment that can be positioned right above the working area, so that harmful chemicals and fumes as well as fine particles are removed right at the source, before they become airborne.

Contact Electrocorp for more information.

Show your support for greener and healthier working environments by following this blog.

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