Pioneers, according to Webster, are people who open up a new line of thought, activity or technical development, preparing the way for others to follow. In this sense, the term applies to the Colorado Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists, which has recommended guidelines for air purification in salons where artificial nail work is done.

Although air quality is an area where still more research is needed and requirements need to be more carefully defined, the Colorado Board is to be commended for its pioneering efforts. In the upcoming months, the nail industry will be watching closely to see which states follow Colorado’s lead, and what new developments result. So far, Arizona, California, Michigan and Oregon are already considering similar regulations.

To bring you up to date on the steps taken by the Colorado Board, a detailed editorial begins on page 35. And on page 42, we present a summary of some ventilation kits recently introduced to the nail market.

Meanwhile, also pending is the question of whether to extend air quality controls to other salon services. Just the other day, I was in a full-service salon where artificial nails are a specialty. Due the use of vented tables and a good air purfication system, the acrylic smell was minimal. What irritated my eyes, nose and throat were fumes of hair coloring chemicals, permanent wave solutions, hair spray and other hair treatment chemicals. It’s reassuring to see a growing concern at the state level for the health and comfort of cosmetologists, nail technicians and clients alike.

Progress may take time, but thanks to pioneers like the Colorado Board, at least the pace has been set and the trend seems to be headed in the right direction.

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