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State-of-the-Art Piercing Sterilisation

Every piercing procedure generates biohazardous waste.
Every piercing procedure generates biohazardous waste.

Trust in the sterilisation processes used by your piercing studio is paramount to your health and safety. Universal precautions are practiced at Piercing HQ, which means our sterilisation procedures are strong enough to withstand the assumption that “everyone has everything” safety mandate. Knowing what to look for is important, so we thought we’d share how the professionals do it.

Many of the tools we use in a piercing procedure are not disposable, so what happens to them between each client is really important – especially if the next client is YOU.

State-of-the-Art Piercing Sterilisation ContaminatedToolsPPE
Staff Preparation for Contaminated Tools Processing

Autoclave sterilisation is the only guaranteed method that will ensure ALL bacteria and viruses are effectively neutralised on used tools.

There are two main types of autoclaves used in the piercing industry.

Chamber Autoclave
Chamber Autoclave

At Piercing HQ the chamber autoclave is the FIRST autoclave that is used to process contaminated tools.

If a piercing studio only has a chamber autoclave then everything is usually sealed into autoclave pouches after it is washed and processed.

State-of-the-Art Piercing Sterilisation Autoclave PouchesThis is a combination plastic/paper pouch that – when stored correctly – maintains the sterility of the item inside until it is opened. Cotton buds, corks, jewellery, tools, needles etc would all be put in autoclave pouches and sterilised prior to use.

Ensure that all packages are opened in front of you if the studio you are in uses the “packaged system”.

At Piercing HQ we do not package our tools/disposables prior to use, as they are sterilised again in another style of autoclave called a cassette or Statim autoclave as needed. This takes away the risk of incorrectly stored or damaged packaging which renders the item inside unsterile.


Statim/cassette Autoclave
Statim/cassette Autoclave

Instead, everything is packed into a Statim cassette immediately prior to use, which negates any of the risks associated with using packaged items. The sterilisation cycle of the Statim Autoclave for our purposes is 7 minutes. Most clients don’t even notice this wait time as they are completing paper work etc whilst this is happening.

Cassette loaded for an eyebrow piercing.
Cassette loaded for an eyebrow piercing.

Everything inside the cassette remains sterile until it is opened – in front of the client.

The details of each Statim cycle are recorded for every client in order to maintain a sterilisation record in case it is needed for future reference.

So whilst it is not mandatory to sterilise used tools twice before reusing, it is very important that packaged tools are handled carefully to ensure the integrity of the package is preserved for tool sterility.

We hope this little article has helped you understand more about the sterilisation process that goes on behind the scenes to look after you at Piercing HQ – each and every time.

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