One of the things I love most about Tips Nail Bar in Toronto is how much owner Leeanne Colley and her wonderful team care about their clients. Another is that Tips consistently makes me feel proud to be part of their clientele: my nails spark compliments from random people almost daily, and just as often, a Tips team-member's name shows up attached to a stunning national magazine editorial/ nail health or trends interview/ tv segment/ thrilled-client Instagram. Seriously, who else can say all that about the nail salon they frequent? And in acquiring the new Toronto Public Health BodySafe Pass, the Tips team has also shown it ain't no procrastinator.
the new toronto public health bodysafe pass
I don't think I have to go into much detail about unsafe salons. You know it's about scrupulous sanitizing and optimal air quality -- see this Judith Simson story in the Toronto Star about the high health costs of cheap manicures. For the longest time, there were zero regulations in place about health practices in nail salons, wax bars and tattoo parlours (how much do I love the combination of terms that is tattoo + parlour?). In July last year, 2013, Toronto Public Health (TPH) launched an inspection program and website called BodySafe. The initiative will regulate health practices for hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, tattoo parlours and anywhere that does piercings and aesthetics.
the bodysafe pass: does your nail salon know?
It's possible your favourite nail salon or wax bar (or tattoo parlour) still knows nothing about the Toronto Public Health Bodysafe Pass initiative. As yet there's been only a little coverage in the general news or trade publications. Leeanne found out about the program when she spotted a Pass sign in a hair salon window in February and called Toronto Public Health. Hair salons inspections are the first stage, already being carried out. Nail salons and wax bars don't require passes until July 2015. "I didn't want to wait until then, so I asked to be put in touch with an inspector right away," Leeanne tells me. "No-one returned my call."
Still, an inspector arrived at the salon without prior notice yesterday. Not a problem because Leeanne and the Tips crew -- Miyuki, Naomi, Oksana, Nargas and Chantel -- were prepared. As I mentioned gushed earlier, Leeanne cares about her clientele, and she doesn't waste time. She and her team had every safety regulation covered.
"We've been fighting for inspections like this for a really long time in our industry," says Leeanne. "There has been no licensing for nail salons anywhere in Canada, other than BC who brought in licensing for nail salons maybe 10 years ago."
Incidentally, Tips Nail Bar opened eight years ago, today. "The pass is the best anniversary present anybody could ever give me," Leeanne says.
Happy Anniversary, Tips! Love you long time. xoxoxo
Does your nail salon know about the Toronto Public Health BodySafe Pass? Does your hair salon already have one? If you live outside of Toronto, are there regulations for nail salons and other industry establishments?
Salon images courtesy of Tips Nail Bar.