Every lash artist needs to learn how to clean eyelash tweezers properly. It’s crucial to keep them cleaned and sanitized to avoid cross-contamination between clients since your tweezers may come in contact with the client’s hair, skin, mucus membrane, and tears.
In this article we will teach you the ideal step-by-step on how to clean your eyelash extension tweezers, the products I use to do it and some do’s and don’ts when handling your tweezers.
Let’s get started!
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How to Clean Lash Tweezers
Step 1: Wash Your Hands
It’s important to work in a sanitized environ environment to clean your tweezers to prevent further contamination. As such, make sure to thoroughly rob all sides of your hands and wrist with soap. You should wash your hands for at least 30 seconds before rinsing and drying.
Step 2: Clean the Tweezers
Use detergent or soap to remove any organic material and remove any visible soil from the surface of the tweezers. Remember here that cleaning does not mean disinfecting or sterilizing (more on that later).
There are many ways to do this step. You can:
– Use your hands gently
– Use a small sponge
– Use a small brush with thick bristles
However, if there’s lash glue on your tweezers, this won’t be enough. This can happen if you dipped the extension too far into the glue. You can’t simply use your nails to remove the adhesive. So this is an extra step you have to take when cleaning the tweezers.
how to clean lash glue off tweezers:
- Use Acetone to soak a cotton pad.
- Wrap the soaked cotton pad around the tip of your tweezers for 2 minutes.
- Gently wipe the tip of your tweezers with the soaked pads.
- Continue the sterilization process.
Using acetone to remove the lash glue doesn’t replace the sterilization process (the next steps), so make sure you continue with those.
Step 3: Rinse and Dry the Tweezers
Hold the tweezers in your hand and simply use tap water to rinse them. Next, dry them with a piece of paper towel.
Step 4: Desinfect and Sterlize the Tweezers
Use a disinfectant tray to soak your tweezers in liquid disinfectant. There are many chemicals to choose from but the two most frequent ones used by lash artists are:
- Barbicide: This disinfectant usually comes in concentrated form. You’ll need to dilute it with water. You typically will be required to use 2 oz of Barbicide for every 32oz of cold water and let it soak for 10 minutes. However, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for product use, reuse, and contact time.
- PreEmpt CS20: This is the product I like to use. It’s convenient because there’s no dilution required. Simply put a small amount into the disinfectant tray and let the tweezers soak for 20 minutes. Here’s the protocol from the manufacturer.
Step 5: Rinse and Dry Your Tweezers
After the tweezers have soaked in the disinfecting solution for the required amount of time (don’t let them in there longer than recommended), lift the plastic tray on which the tweezers are laying and rinse them with cold water. Make sure there’s no residue left.
Once rinsing is finished, dry the tweezers with a paper towel and store them in a sterile pouch or container.
What to Use When You Clean, Sterilize and Disinfect Your Lash Tweezers
|Tweezer Sterilizer Tray||https://amzn.to/3YqBMkZ|
|Lash Tweezer Holder||https://amzn.to/3PuB81E|
Why You Should Clean Your Eyelash Tweezers
Tweezers are used to isolate and apply eyelash extensions. This is done by separating the eyelashes on the client around their eyes. Since we are working around the eyes, the tweezers may come in contact with sweat, oil and bacteria.
To prevent the transmission of bacteria, viruses, and pathogens, tweezers must be cleaned between each client. This ensures that the environment is safe and hygienic which is an essential practice for any lash artist to keep them and their clients safe.
Based on the list of Guide to Infection Prevention and Control in Personal Service Settings tweezers can be categorized as a semi-critical item. Although they are not intended to penetrate the skin, it is used around the eyes, they may very well come in contact with the mucus membrane or tears. This means they must be cleaned followed by high-level disinfection.
Other Methods of Sterilization
There are other methods of sterilization available (for step 4), let’s take a look at some of the other options to see if you should use them.
1. Alcohol to Disinfect Tweezers
Yes, you can use an alcohol concentration of at least 70% to disinfect your tweezers. There are higher concentrations of alcohol, for example, 99.9% but higher alcohol doesn’t mean it is better.
When the concentration is lower it has more water, which helps it to dissolve more slowly, penetrate cells, and kill bacteria. To disinfect the tweezers, they should be immersed for at least 10 minutes. The alcohol needs to be changed daily.
Since it needs to be changed daily the cost can become higher.
2. Boiling Tweezers
Long answer short, no you shouldn’t boil your tweezers. Boiling is a method to sterilize your metal tools where you would need to place the washed tweezers into the pot and bring the water to a rolling boil of at least 200°F (93.3°C) for at least 30 minutes before use.
However, we don’t recommend this method as it is very time consuming and not practical in a salon setting.
3. Using an Autoclave
Yes, you can use an autoclave. This is a mechanism that sterilizes your metal tools by using pressurized steam. This method is recommended for critical items, these are items that penetrate the skin or mucous membranes or come in direct contact with the bloodstream.
This is often used in medical settings. So the use of an autoclave in a salon setting is going the extra mile. These machines can be very costly and require weekly and monthly maintenance so it might not be the most accessible way of sterilizing your tweezers.
4. Glass Bead Sterilizer
No, the use of a glass bead sterilizer is not a suitable method. Glass bead sterilizers use glass beads placed in a stainless steel pot where the core can heat up to 300 degrees Celcius quickly killing fungi, bacteria, and viruses.
Although it may sound quick and convenient, we do not recommend this method of sterilization. Firstly, you are not able to sterilize the whole length of the tweezer.
Secondly, you would need to stick the tweezers from the tip where you can risk bending or damaging the tip of the tweezers compromising the tip.
5. UV Light
No, we don’t recommend using a UV light to disinfect your tweezers. UV light is a type of electromagnetic radiation that is transmitted in waves and particles at various wavelengths and frequencies.
To effectively disinfect the UV light needs to be on the same wavelength as the germ or virus, you want to eliminate.
Simply using a UV light would not be enough to properly disinfect your tweezers. If there is any dirt or debris that blocks the light, that area will not be effectively disinfected.
However, this can be a great tool to keep your already disinfected tweezers bacteria-free.
Do’s and Don’Ts With Eyelash Tweezers
- Keep multiple pairs in case you damage your tweezers.
- Disinfect your tweezers between each client.
- Make sure the tweezers are completely dry before they are stored away.
- Keep the rubber tip on to make sure the tip stays sharp!
- Avoid using a nail buffer to remove the dried adhesive, this may rub against the metal changing precision of the tweezer tips.
- Avoid using your fingernails to flick off the dried adhesive.
- Avoid submerging the tweezers in the disinfectant overnight.
To keep you and your clients safe, remember to always operate your business in a clean and hygienic workspace. Keeping your tools clean and sanitized is super important especially since they are used around the client’s eyes.
Make sure that your tweezers are properly cleaned and disinfected between each client because the last thing you want is your clients coming back with an eye infection!
I hope these simple steps helped you understand how to effectively clean, disinfect and sterilize your eyelash tweezers. If there’s anything you want to ask, just drop me a comment below!
– Asako 🙂
Further Readings on DivineLashes.ca: If you would like to know more about another essential tool in your arsenal, check out my eyelash extension adhesive 101 article and my review of the best lash beds available today. Also, make sure to cover your bases with my eyelash extension beginner’s guide and allergic reaction to lash extensions post.
- Public Health Ontario. Classes of Equipment and Instruments. Retrieved from https://www.publichealthontario.ca/-/media/documents/a/2018/at-a-glance-ipac-pss-equipment-instrument-classes.pdf?sc_lang=en (Accessed on 30 March 2022)
- Virox Probeauty. Tool Disinfection. Retrieved from https://www.viroxprobeauty.ca/tool-disinfection (Accessed on 30 March 2022)
- Brunilda Nazario, MD (2020). What to Know About Rubbing Alcohol. Retrieve from https://www.webmd.com/first-aid/ss/rubbing-alcohol-uses (Accessed on 30 March 2022)
- Deborah Weatherspoon, Ph.D., R.N., CRNA (2019). How to Sterilize a Needle at Home. Retrieve from https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-sterilize-a-needle (Accessed on 30 March 2022)
- BT Lab Systems (2019). The Effectiveness of a Glass Bead Sterilizer. Retrieve from https://blog.btlabsystems.com/blog/the-effectiveness-of-a-glass-bead-sterilizer (Accessed on 30 March 2022)
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Asako Ito is the Co-Founder of Divine Lashes and a certified eyelash stylist. She has garnered acclaim for her cutting-edge techniques in the lash industry.
Holding multiple certifications and licenses, including Luxury Eye, THE LASH SHOP, World Microblading, and The Lash Bible, she has a constant thirst for knowledge. These credentials reflect her commitment to excellence and staying at the forefront of lash and brow artistry.
With over 10 years of experience, Asako continuously increases her knowledge both as a technician and educator by collaborating with top lash artists worldwide. You can read her full bio here.