Back to Practice - Station Set-Up and Reception/Retail Readiness

Start by looking at your reception/retail area and station with a fresh eye. Think about having bare, easy-to-clean surfaces; you will be doing a lot of cleaning going forward. Give your space a deep clean, and consider what you might need to add or remove to make your space safer.


  • Remove any unnecessary items that don’t serve a purpose to your practice such as candles, magazines, and knick-knacks. Consider removing items (e.g., throw pillows, fabric-lined chairs, seat cushions) with surfaces that cannot be cleaned properly. There may be a time for these things to return to your space, but for now, think about every surface a client interacts with in your space and how you can keep those surfaces clean for the health of all your clients.
  • Remove all product testers and samples from your retail shelves and front desk counters. Create client signage:
    “Let me know if you want to sample this product.”
  • Rethink seating in any waiting areas, both in regards to their cleanability and their spacing so that clients are 3–6 feet apart, per the CDC; stagger client appointment start and end times so there is no client overlap in the waiting area. Remove unnecessary and communal items including pillows and magazines.
  • Eliminate self-serve items, and move water-dispensers to a place where the nail professional controls their use.


  • Do a deep clean of all spaces. Use EPA-approved cleaning products. Wipe down all soft surfaces like chairs and disinfect hard non-porous surfaces like the reception counter, phones, door handles, light switches, and point of sale equipment.
  • Clean and disinfect all shelving, displays; disinfect nail polish bottles.
  • Clean air ducts and vents.
  • Establish a cleaning schedule for bathrooms (for example every hour or after every client).
  • Wash all towels, rugs, blankets, and curtains thoroughly and clean any holding receptacles for dirty laundry. Consider if a laundry service would be helpful to you at this time. As customary, ensure you have a secure and covered way to store fresh towels and a separate lidded and lined receptacle for dirty towels.
  • Clean chairs and/or stools, nail stations, rolling carts, nail dryer stations, and pedicure bowls, and ensure all implements are disinfected and stored in a closed container as directed by the CDC and your state board. If you have an autoclave, clean, pouch, and sterilize your implements.
  • Clean pedicure bowls by removing all parts and immersing in an EPA disinfectant per the manufacturer’s directions.
  • Ensure all single-use items such as nail files, pumice stones, and buffer blocks are new.


  • Have hand sanitizer, cleaning wipes, and facial tissues available in all spaces. Have disposable paper towels or a standing wipe dispenser available to use when handling doorknobs.
  • Have a hard-surfaced/plastic basket for clients to put their personal belongings in. This will keep purses, keys, phones, etc., out of the way and help prevent cross contamination of your working space.
  • For clients who insist on holding their phone, provide new plastic bags to place the phone in.
  • Lidded trashcans that are operated by a foot-pedal will keep facial tissues and other waste products from remaining exposed to the treatment room air.
  • If you have a restroom within your space, install no-touch soap and paper towel dispensers; add a lidded, foot-pedal trashcan. Place CDC handwashing guidance posters within your restroom.
  • If you don’t have windows or a door you can open in your salon, consider adding a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) purifier. Although there is no direct evidence yet that these types of air purifiers can reduce the transmission of COVID-19, their use with similar viruses indicates they might help in some situations, and it would be logical that these filters could reduce concentrations of COVID-19 particles that remain airborne.

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