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The Importance of Patch Testing

Please take a minute to look at our most recent blog, ‘The Importance of Patch Testing’. Permalash is the UK’s leading supplier of professional eyelash dye and eyebrow tint. That is why we thought it would be responsible of us to pass on our advice and knowledge around this important subject. Our Permalash brand ambassadors are aware of the importance of patch testing, and the need of being able to identify an allergy before the client is fully exposed to the product. We hope you find this information valuable.

There are so many reasons why thorough patch testing is essential in every salon. The risks involved with not giving one can be serious – allergic reactions can be catastrophic for your clients, while financially they can leave you with heavy legal bills, fines and settlements. From protecting your customers to avoiding claims against your business, doing a patch test before a treatment is often essential. Failing to do one could lose you a customer – or even put you in a tricky legal situation.

So, what exactly do you need to know about patch testing? What is it, how is it carried out and what are the reasons behind it.

Brow and Lash Tint - Brow Tinting - Permalash

Why do I need to do a patch test?

Patch testing is important because it will help you know that your client can safely use a skincare product – even with the most natural products, there’s always the risk of allergies. Sensitive skin can make it prone to become inflamed if it comes into contact with specific chemicals. Patch testing should, therefore, always be completed for eyelash/eyebrow tinting, peel treatments, lash glue, eyelash perming, tanning sprays and other products used in a beauty salon. If this is not done your client could suffer anything from a small irritation to dermatitis or at the worst, anaphylactic shock.

What is a patch test?

A patch test is a simple way of checking whether your client’s skin will react to new products, such as cosmetics, soaps, moisturisers or topical medications. Ideally, a small amount of the product will be tested somewhere on your client’s body, such as their elbow or behind the ear. Once the product has been applied, your client will usually have to wait a while to see whether this has caused any type of reaction. This is an ideal way to identify an allergy before the client is fully exposed to the product. This is for you and your client’s safety and convenience.

The Importance of Patch Testing - Lady Showing Eyebrows

How long does a patch test take?

The client will normally need to wait at least 24 hours to see the side effects of a patch test – and in some cases, this could be 48 hours. After the allocated time, they will need to check for any signs of itchiness, redness or swelling. A patch test doesn’t necessarily need to be done every time you carry out a treatment but should be done every time you use a new product on your client. This should be repeated every few months just in case any of the ingredients changes in the product. It’s also important to note that allergies can develop over time, so anyone can become allergic to products that you have previously used, at anytime.

What are the rules around patch tests?

There’s no law saying that you must do a patch test before you carry out a treatment – but if the manufacturer of the product says a patch test is required and you don’t do a test, most insurance companies won’t cover you.

To make sure you’re covered, you need to make sure you test the customer with the same substance as you’d use to treat them – even if they’ve signed a waiver or insist they don’t need to be tested. There are lots of products that might need a patch test, so always check the manufacturer’s instructions. If the test has any kind of negative reaction, and you still decide to carry out the treatment, you won’t be covered. And if a customer has a bad reaction and makes a claim, that’s bad news for your business.

Thanks for reading!

Thank you for reading this blog – we hope that you have found it useful and it has given you a good insight into the importance of patch testing. Please feel free take a look at the patch testing advice and guidance page on our website. If you’d like to become a Permalash distributor or want to use our products in your training academy or salon, we’d love to hear from you! Please call us on +44 (0) 1752 936822 or email us via our contact form to register your interest and learn more about working with us.

You can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date with all our latest news, updates and competitions.


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