The Ultimate Guide to Salon Tool Disinfection

Ensuring the cleanliness of salon equipment is more crucial than ever. With the increasing awareness among clients about the importance of hygiene in beauty services, salons are under scrutiny to maintain the highest standards of sanitation. This guide provides comprehensive insights into proper salon tool disinfection practices to help you establish a reputation as the cleanest salon in town.

Understanding What to Disinfect

Porous Vs. Non-Porous Tools

The first step in effective salon hygiene is to distinguish between tools that can be disinfected and those that must be disposed of after a single use. Porous materials, such as standard emery boards, buffers, pumice stones, and any tool with wooden components, are designed for one-time use because they can harbor bacteria and pathogens.

Conversely, non-porous items like metal or plastic tools, including diamond hand files, nippers, and manicure brushes, can and should be disinfected after every service to ensure they are free of contaminants.

Cleaning and Disinfecting Salon Tools

The Cleaning Process

Cleaning your salon tools is an indispensable step that precedes disinfection. Use hot soapy water to thoroughly scrub tools, removing all debris, dust, product residues, and skin cells. Opting for a soap that effectively cuts through natural oils on the skin is a pro tip to enhance the cleaning efficacy.

Disinfection Techniques

After cleaning, tools must be soaked in an EPA-approved disinfectant solution. This process should be meticulously followed after every service to eliminate any risks of infection or contamination. Having multiple sets of tools can streamline this process, ensuring that you always have a clean set ready for use while another is being disinfected.

Key Products and Methods

Essential Disinfectants

For salon owners seeking effective disinfectant solutions, products like Lucas-Cide concentrate or its ready-to-use (RTU) variant are recommended for their proven efficacy in eliminating pathogens on non-porous surfaces. Additionally, incorporating the use of rubber gloves and 80% alcohol solutions can further sanitize tools, ensuring a comprehensive approach to salon hygiene.

Manual Cleaning and High-Tech Sterilization

While manual cleaning with dawn hot water is essential, employing high-tech solutions such as high heat sterilizers can offer an additional layer of security. These devices are designed to kill bacteria and viruses that might survive the chemical disinfection process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I reuse porous tools if I disinfect them?

No, porous tools are designed for single use and should be disposed of after each client to prevent the spread of infection.

How long should tools be soaked in disinfectant?

Follow the manufacturer's instructions for the specific disinfectant you are using. Generally, tools should be fully submerged in the disinfectant solution for at least 10 minutes.

What's the difference between sanitizing and disinfecting?

Sanitizing reduces the number of germs on a surface to a safe level, as judged by public health standards. Disinfecting kills nearly 100% of germs on surfaces or objects, making it a more thorough process.


Guide to Disinfect


This should be done after every single service. Seems time-consuming? Having multiple sets of tools can help save time and money! To see a more detailed explanation of the disinfection process, click here. 

If the disinfection process is not done properly, the risk of infection and contamination are present. 


Shop for Lucas-Cide concentrate or Lucas-Cide RTU


December 18, 2020 — Erica Schlabach

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