Working in a salon that offers services for hair and nails can make you subject to long term exposure to volatile organic chemicals (frequently abbreviated as VOCs).
To avoid aggravating short-term symptoms and long term health problems, it is essential that your salon have filtration that keeps the air clean. Here are 5 best features to have in a unit.
Enhanced Carbon Filter---Carbon is well known for its ability to remove gaseous pollutants such as airborne chemicals. But the types of chemicals that many salon products produce (formaldehyde, ammonia, and acetone to name a few) require that an additive be added to increase carbon's effectiveness.
Potassium iodide has been found to be effective, and drastically increases the carbon's ability to absorb these chemicals from the air.
Continuous Operation---Just because the procedure ends and your client leaves doesn't mean that the fumes in the air are gone. Residual product in a jar, apron, tissue, or towels can allow the off-gassing to continue for hours.
Even after the shop is closed, it's important to have a cleaner that can continue to scrub the air of residual fumes. This gives you more of a chance of opening the doors to air that smells fresh and inviting each morning.
A split capacitor motor is the part of the unit that can make this happen. Look for it in the technical specifications or the owner's manual. Without it you are likely to have to give the unit a rest periodically. This down time will allow chemicals to build in the air putting air quality at less than healthy.
Particle Filters----Even though the main focus may be on the chemical fumes, the best of both worlds would be to have one cleaner that can eliminate airborne particles as well.
Pre-filters for large and medium size particles would trap those pollutants that you can see like hair, and dust. A finer grade of filter known as a high efficiency particle arresting (HEPA) filter would remove microscopic particles as small as.3 microns.
Even though these tiny particles are invisible to the human eye they can still cause air quality and overall health to suffer. And bacteria and viruses generally travel from one host to another by attaching to airborne particulates. Taking out the particles can go a long way towards keeping staff and clients healthier.
360 Degree Air Intake---Having a purifier that pulls air in from all sides gives you a huge advantage in where you can place your cleaner. Basically, the sky is the limit with a cleaner that has this feature.
The benefit to you is that regardless of where you place it, as long as there is 6 inches of clearance from any surface it will operate at peak capacity. Placing it in a corner out of the way or pulling it close to where a particularly smelly procedure is happening will not interfere with its cleaning capabilities at all. The 360 degree intake feature gives you virtually unlimited placement options.
Low Maintenance---A unit that can take care of you with having you spend a lot time on it will give you the cleanest air. Stay away from cleaners that require you to stop filtration to wash, spray, or charge anything inside the unit.