Health and Safety
Sterilising your Equipment
It is important that you keep all your implements and workspace clean and sterilised to prevent cross infection. You can buy yourself an autoclave to heat your tools to such a temperature that it destroys any bacteria or you can immerse your tools in a sterilising liquid like Barbicide. I keep a hand sanitiser on my trolley just so it is to hand and it looks more professional if your clients can see that you ensure a clean environment.
If you use any sort of acrylic or glass to hold your lashes you will want to clean these with a disinfectant wipe between clients.
It is so important that you protect yourself when you are lashing. Not only can it be quite a physically demanding job but the fumes from the adhesive are very strong and can have quite a negative effect on your health if you don't take precautions.
I dispense my adhesive onto a glass plate on my right hand side and I never personally experienced and negative effects like my nose and throat stinging or eyes watering but I did try out using a glue ring to see if it would speed up my application. Personally I didn't like it, I was always a bit paranoid that I might spill some adhesive on my client's hair. What I did find with the adhesive being so close to my face was that I did start to get a sore throat and sensitive nose whenever I would lash which just made me realise that those fumes are strong and I should be wearing a mask.
I always wear a mask now even though I have gone back to having my adhesive on my glass plate. It's just not worth the risk in my opinion. If you are reading this you are someone that loves lashing and it would be such a shame for you to build up an allergy to the adhesive due to repeated exposure. To protect yourself you need to invest in some masks, and they need to be allergy masks not just the paper ones and ventilate your room as well as you possibly can.
Wearing a Mask
Some lash techs choose to carry on as normal if their client is pregnant but I would advise against it. It is also a good idea to check with your insurer and supplier to see what they recommend. Due to fluctuating hormone levels a pregnant client may find that their tolerance for everyday products diminishes and they are much more likely to experience irritation. Also, in the event that they do react to the treatment they will be unable to take antihistamines to calm it. Laying on their back for prolonged periods of time is also not recommended for pregnant women and they would probably find the treatment uncomfortable in itself.
Reassure your client that they can still continue with lash extension after they have had their little one and explain that it's purely because their changing body may react to the chemical composition of the adhesive and you have their best interests at heart.
The adhesive isn't the only part of being a lash tech that can affect your health. Lashing is quite a repetitive procedure and I have adapted my technique to prevent any undue stress on my wrists. For classic lashing, I apply my lashes to the back of my hand at an angle so that I don't need to twist that wrist at all and for volume I apply the pad to the client's forehead so I can make fans without having to hold my wrist in a certain position repeatedly. Carpal tunnel is a nightmare and it's pretty much a career ender if you're a lash tech.
Your back is another thing that will suffer so get a saddle stool and it won't hurt you to get a massage every now and then to relax your shoulders. Constantly leaning forward without stretching intermittently can lead to a condition called Dowager's hump there fatty deposits accumulate on the back of the neck. So take breaks and stretch!!