Bloodborne Pathogens: What’s the Big Deal?
Being a professional in any field requires years of skill, studying, research, and training. Becoming a professional PMU and Microblading artist is no different.
As an artist, you need to be educated on all of the risks and various safety aspects that present themselves during a procedure. This includes the existence and possible transference of bloodborne pathogens.
With the recent surge of 2-day microblading classes, it’s difficult to fully cover all of the health and safety hazards artists need to be aware of when dealing with this blood-related procedure.
In addition, much of the artist and client safety hazards can be taken for granted, especially when there is so much emphasis put on the practical part of microblading, such as patterns and technique.
What are bloodborne pathogens?
Bloodborne pathogens are tiny, microscopic organisms that live in the blood and can cause infectious diseases in humans. These diseases include hepatitis B and C, HIV, and a host of other diseases that can be transmitted by blood. If you are in any profession that involves using needles, working with skin, bodily fluids, or broken skin, you are at risk of coming into contact with blood that could possibly be infected.
Professionals who encounter these microorganisms in their daily lives are nurses, doctors, tattooists, piercers, dentists, home care providers, manicurists, aestheticians, and of course, permanent makeup and microblading artists. It is extremely important for people in these professions to know all of the risks that bloodborne pathogens present, as well as how to deal with a situation when a risk becomes a reality.
To make things even more challenging, these microorganisms are invisible to the naked eye. However, it’s important to know that where you see blood or broken skin, the possibility of encountering bloodborne pathogens is not only high, but extremely likely.
The most common way to get an infection from a bloodborne pathogen is through contact with another person’s blood to the mucus membranes, or through an existing cut or wound. Harmful microorganisms can also settle under the beds of the fingernails.
Aside from being at risk of getting an infectious and potentially dangerous bloodborne disease, you are also at risk of passing it along to another person or client if you do not take the proper precautions. For example, if you don’t properly dispose of your microblades in a sharps container, there is a possibility that the remaining infectious organisms can make contact with you and your next client through a needle stick injury.
In any case such as this, you could be held legally responsible for not making sure that your clients are safe should they contract a bloodborne pathogen.
It’s interesting to note that HIV, one of the most commonly known bloodborne pathogen related infections, is highly unstable and can be killed easily by soap and water before it enters the bloodstream. More stable bloodborne pathogens such as Hepatitis A, can survive for 4 hours on unwashed hands, while Hepatitis B can remain stable and survive for up to 7 days in dried blood.
Where do I start?
Safety and best practices start with implementing good BBP standards into your workflow.
Some simple workplace controls you can implement right now are:
Some other things to consider for good BBP standards in your workplace are:
The Red Cross offers online training for those who may be exposed to blood and body fluids during the performance of their work and who wish to gain a more thorough understanding of bloodborne pathogens, the prevention of occupational exposure, and exposure follow-up.
What is cross contamination?
Cross contamination is always a risk during your procedures when you are dealing with a client’s bodily fluids. This happens when you touch something after you have touched blood or lymph; any surface you touch may now hold those bloodborne pathogens.
Here’s an example: If you are working on a client and you want to take some pictures with your phone, but you don’t take off your gloves when you grab your phone, those bloodborne pathogens from your client are now on your phone. Then, say that you put your phone down and adjust your headlamp or lamp, the bloodborne pathogens will be passed on to that surface and are now dangerously close to your own face. After this, say you grab a couple of other pigments: you’ve just spread all of those bloodborne pathogens to other surfaces and have cross-contaminated ALL of them. See how easy it is?
As another example, a client can be touching her eyebrow while she is admiring the work you’ve done and then touch your mirror. The bloodborne pathogens have now spread to that mirror, which means that if nothing is done to sterilize the mirror and you have other clients handling it, there is a risk of spreading one client’s bloodborne pathogens to the next person who touches that mirror.
There are many ways to avoid cross-contamination. Many microblading artists take additional precautions during their procedures by using as many disposable tools and materials as possible to reduce the risk of improper cleaning. Aside from using disposable microblading tools, many artists prefer to use bed sheets that are entirely disposable (instead of just washable), barrier films to cover items they touch such as lamps, bottles, and trolleys, wear shower caps to keep their hair from falling into their faces, and face masks. All of this ensures an extra level of precaution.
Make sure when you’re in a procedure that if you have to touch something other than a disposable item, you only do so once you have removed your procedure gloves. Then, you may dispose of the gloves, don a new pair, and continue with the procedure. Changing your gloves only takes a few seconds and is a habit you must adhere to 100% of the time.
A good rule of thumb to develop is to keep only disposables on your workstation. This way, you don’t accidentally cross contaminate any items by touching something on your tray that isn’t disposable, such as your glasses, phone, pencils, pigment bottles, etc. Also, as a reminder, all of your needles MUST be disposed of in a sharps container.
For more excellent information on avoiding cross-contamination, visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website here.
Ciara Ramsden, Owner of Flirt Cosmetics Studio and Brow Bar in Calgary, PMU artist, and registered Paramedic and Emergency Medical Services Educator says that the artist must make sure that they increase barrier protection on the skin, on top of wearing gloves, to help prevent cracks in the skin that can contribute to the spread of possible bloodborne pathogens. “Care for your own skin by using high-quality barrier cream after washing,” she says. “Make sure to avoid cracks and wounds caused by constant hand washing, hand sanitizers, and dry winter weather.”
Some other best practices when dealing with bloodborne pathogens are washing your hands often when gloves are removed, disinfecting all surfaces between each client with a hospital grade disinfectant such as Cavicide, cleaning reusable tools (such as tweezers) with hospital grade disinfectant before sterilizing them, and re-taking your bloodborne pathogen training on a yearly basis.
You must also be careful to disinfect your station PROPERLY, not just quickly. Some disinfectants to wipe your station require that they remain on the surfaces for longer than you may expect. Be sure to check the instructions on the bottle, as it the disinfectant may need to have contact on the surface anywhere from 30 seconds to 10 minutes.
Taking a course in bloodborne pathogens is absolutely crucial. A comprehensive course on bloodborne pathogens (such as the one in OSHA) will include the following subjects:
Valerie Weber, permanent makeup artist for Dermagrafix in Pennsylvania, points out some common mistakes made amongst beginners when dealing with bloodborne pathogens.
“The most common mistakes I see new trainees make is taking advice from multiple technicians,” she says. “While it may be great to collect opinions and pick one that suits your style or preference, the information is often inaccurate. The advice may be coming from someone who is inexperienced, someone who practices below the professional standard or wasn’t taught well or coming from someone who practices in a different city, state, or country where the laws vary drastically. I think some people also need to tap into their common sense to discern what makes sense in terms of safety. Just because there isn’t a law to do something a certain way doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t try to uphold a better standard than what is required.”
As for training, Valerie says that beginners will more than likely have to work on finding a class outside of their microblading course for a proper education on bloodborne pathogens. “Most trainers are not qualified to offer bloodborne pathogens training, but a course is required in most cities,” she says, “Tattoo and permanent makeup practitioners must take an OSHA approved bloodborne pathogens course specific to body modifications. These classes are at minimum four hours, and a certificate of completion is given to prove that the student attended. This course would be renewed annually as well. It is wise for a student to take this class before taking any fundamental [microblading or PMU] training class.”
A lot of artists will display their BBP certificate in their work space and website to give their clients (and Health Inspector) some extra peace of mind. Make sure that you double check the legislation for your area, as it may be required for you to display it in your work space.
Tina’s Pro Tips
Pro Tip #1:
To build good work habits practices for your business, you should make sure that your workstation is as sanitary as possible. It is important that each and every client contact should be treated exactly the same and one should ALWAYS suspect that pathogen may be present.
Our Tina Davies Sterile Kits include 16 of the most widely used disposable tray setup items.You can find out more about The Sterile Kit on our blog.
Tina Davies 16 Piece Disposable Sterile Kit
Pro tip #2: Tell clients that you are blood borne pathogen certified in your marketing. This is a great tool for building your business, as it will also make your clients feel more at ease!
For more information, and to get your certification online, visit the OSHA (The Occupational Safety and Health Association) here
Please Note: The purpose of this article is to bring awareness to the existence and transference of bloodborne pathogens in PMU and Microblading. This article is not a substitution for a Bloodborne Pathogen training course.
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TERMS OF SERVICE
This website is operated by Tina Davies UK. Throughout the site, the terms “we”, “us” and “our” refer to Tina Davies Europe. Tina Davies UK offers this website, including all information, tools and services available from this site to you, the user, conditioned upon your acceptance of all terms, conditions, policies and notices stated here.
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Our store is hosted on Shopify Inc. They provide us with the online e-commerce platform that allows us to sell our products and services to you.
SECTION 1 - ONLINE STORE TERMS
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For more detail, please review our Returns Policy.
SECTION 7 - OPTIONAL TOOLS
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SECTION 8 - THIRD-PARTY LINKS
Certain content, products and services available via our Service may include materials from third-parties.
Third-party links on this site may direct you to third-party websites that are not affiliated with us. We are not responsible for examining or evaluating the content or accuracy and we do not warrant and will not have any liability or responsibility for any third-party materials or websites, or for any other materials, products, or services of third-parties.
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If, at our request, you send certain specific submissions (for example contest entries) or without a request from us you send creative ideas, suggestions, proposals, plans, or other materials, whether online, by email, by postal mail, or otherwise (collectively, 'comments'), you agree that we may, at any time, without restriction, edit, copy, publish, distribute, translate and otherwise use in any medium any comments that you forward to us. We are and shall be under no obligation (1) to maintain any comments in confidence; (2) to pay compensation for any comments; or (3) to respond to any comments.
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SECTION 10 - PERSONAL INFORMATION
SECTION 11 - ERRORS, INACCURACIES AND OMISSIONS
Occasionally there may be information on our site or in the Service that contains typographical errors, inaccuracies or omissions that may relate to product descriptions, pricing, promotions, offers, product shipping charges, transit times and availability. We reserve the right to correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions, and to change or update information or cancel orders if any information in the Service or on any related website is inaccurate at any time without prior notice (including after you have submitted your order).
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SECTION 12 - PROHIBITED USES
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SECTION 13 - DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTIES; LIMITATION OF LIABILITY
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SECTION 14 - INDEMNIFICATION
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SECTION 15 - SEVERABILITY
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SECTION 16 - TERMINATION
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These Terms of Service are effective unless and until terminated by either you or us. You may terminate these Terms of Service at any time by notifying us that you no longer wish to use our Services, or when you cease using our site.
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SECTION 17 - ENTIRE AGREEMENT
The failure of us to exercise or enforce any right or provision of these Terms of Service shall not constitute a waiver of such right or provision.
These Terms of Service and any policies or operating rules posted by us on this site or in respect to The Service constitutes the entire agreement and understanding between you and us and govern your use of the Service, superseding any prior or contemporaneous agreements, communications and proposals, whether oral or written, between you and us (including, but not limited to, any prior versions of the Terms of Service).
Any ambiguities in the interpretation of these Terms of Service shall not be construed against the drafting party.
SECTION 18 - GOVERNING LAW
These Terms of Service and any separate agreements whereby we provide you Services shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of 207 Regent Street London GB W1B 3HH.
SECTION 19 - CHANGES TO TERMS OF SERVICE
You can review the most current version of the Terms of Service at any time at this page.
We reserve the right, at our sole discretion, to update, change or replace any part of these Terms of Service by posting updates and changes to our website. It is your responsibility to check our website periodically for changes. Your continued use of or access to our website or the Service following the posting of any changes to these Terms of Service constitutes acceptance of those changes.
SECTION 20 - CONTACT INFORMATION
Questions about the Terms of Service should be sent to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SECTION 1 - WHAT DO WE DO WITH YOUR INFORMATION?
When you purchase something from our store, as part of the buying and selling process, we collect the personal information you give us such as your name, address and email address.
When you browse our store, we also automatically receive your computer’s internet protocol (IP) address in order to provide us with information that helps us learn about your browser and operating system.
Email marketing (if applicable): With your permission, we may send you emails about our store, new products and other updates.
SECTION 2 - CONSENT
How do you get my consent?
When you provide us with personal information to complete a transaction, verify your credit card, place an order, arrange for a delivery or return a purchase, we imply that you consent to our collecting it and using it for that specific reason only.
If we ask for your personal information for a secondary reason, like marketing, we will either ask you directly for your expressed consent, or provide you with an opportunity to say no.
How do I withdraw my consent?
If after you opt-in, you change your mind, you may withdraw your consent for us to contact you, for the continued collection, use or disclosure of your information, at anytime, by contacting us at email@example.com or mailing us at:
Tina Davies Professional
3219 Yonge Street Suite 248 Toronto Ontario CA M4N 3S1
SECTION 3 - DISCLOSURE
We may disclose your personal information if we are required by law to do so or if you violate our Terms of Service.
SECTION 4 - SHOPIFY
Our store is hosted on Shopify Inc. They provide us with the online e-commerce platform that allows us to sell our products and services to you.
Your data is stored through Shopify’s data storage, databases and the general Shopify application. They store your data on a secure server behind a firewall.
If you choose a direct payment gateway to complete your purchase, then Shopify stores your credit card data. It is encrypted through the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS). Your purchase transaction data is stored only as long as is necessary to complete your purchase transaction. After that is complete, your purchase transaction information is deleted.
All direct payment gateways adhere to the standards set by PCI-DSS as managed by the PCI Security Standards Council, which is a joint effort of brands like Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover.
PCI-DSS requirements help ensure the secure handling of credit card information by our store and its service providers.
For more insight, you may also want to read Shopify’s Terms of Service (https://www.shopify.com/legal/terms) or Privacy Statement (https://www.shopify.com/legal/privacy).
SECTION 5 - THIRD-PARTY SERVICES
In general, the third-party providers used by us will only collect, use and disclose your information to the extent necessary to allow them to perform the services they provide to us.
However, certain third-party service providers, such as payment gateways and other payment transaction processors, have their own privacy policies in respect to the information we are required to provide to them for your purchase-related transactions.
For these providers, we recommend that you read their privacy policies so you can understand the manner in which your personal information will be handled by these providers.
In particular, remember that certain providers may be located in or have facilities that are located a different jurisdiction than either you or us. So if you elect to proceed with a transaction that involves the services of a third-party service provider, then your information may become subject to the laws of the jurisdiction(s) in which that service provider or its facilities are located.
As an example, if you are located in Canada and your transaction is processed by a payment gateway located in the United States, then your personal information used in completing that transaction may be subject to disclosure under United States legislation, including the Patriot Act.
When you click on links on our store, they may direct you away from our site. We are not responsible for the privacy practices of other sites and encourage you to read their privacy statements.
Our store uses Google Analytics to help us learn about who visits our site and what pages are being looked at
SECTION 6 - SECURITY
To protect your personal information, we take reasonable precautions and follow industry best practices to make sure it is not inappropriately lost, misused, accessed, disclosed, altered or destroyed.
If you provide us with your credit card information, the information is encrypted using secure socket layer technology (SSL) and stored with a AES-256 encryption. Although no method of transmission over the Internet or electronic storage is 100% secure, we follow all PCI-DSS requirements and implement additional generally accepted industry standards.
SECTION 7 - COOKIES
Here is a list of cookies that we use. We’ve listed them here so you that you can choose if you want to opt-out of cookies or not.
_session_id, unique token, sessional, Allows Shopify to store information about your session (referrer, landing page, etc).
_shopify_visit, no data held, Persistent for 30 minutes from the last visit, Used by our website provider’s internal stats tracker to record the number of visits
_shopify_uniq, no data held, expires midnight (relative to the visitor) of the next day, Counts the number of visits to a store by a single customer.
cart, unique token, persistent for 2 weeks, Stores information about the contents of your cart.
_secure_session_id, unique token, sessional
storefront_digest, unique token, indefinite If the shop has a password, this is used to determine if the current visitor has access.
PREF, persistent for a very short period, Set by Google and tracks who visits the store and from where
SECTION 8 - AGE OF CONSENT
By using this site, you represent that you are at least the age of majority in your state or province of residence, or that you are the age of majority in your state or province of residence and you have given us your consent to allow any of your minor dependents to use this site.
If our store is acquired or merged with another company, your information may be transferred to the new owners so that we may continue to sell products to you.
SECTION 10- SMS Marketing
By subscribing to Tina Davies professional text notifications, you agree to receive automated marketing text messages from us about our products and services at the phone number you provided when you subscribed, and that the messages may be sent via an automatic telephone dialling system or other technology. Message frequency is recurring. Consent is not a condition of purchase. Message and data rates may apply. Reply STOP, END, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE or QUIT to opt-out and HELP for customer support. You may receive an additional text message confirming your decision to opt-out. You understand and agree that attempting to opt-out by any means other than texting the opt-out commands above is not a reasonable means of opting out.
QUESTIONS AND CONTACT INFORMATION
If you would like to: access, correct, amend or delete any personal information we have about you, register a complaint, or simply want more information contact our Privacy Compliance Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail at
Tina Davies Professional
3219 Yonge Street, Suite 248, Toronto, Ontario Canada, M4N 3S1