Our job usually requires privacy when working in a spa. This need for privacy for one client at-a-time usually inserts us into a poorly ventilated, small room for extended periods of time. 


 While social distancing is our current “best practice” until this coronavirus pandemic has ended, some of us may find ourselves back at work in these small rooms before the pandemic is over. Fortunately, we do know that wearing face coverings can help prevent COVID-19 transmission and that maintaining good air quality is important to avoid illness.  


Because we know that the coronavirus can spread via droplets through the air, and many scientific studies are now reporting that this is an airborne/aerosol virus, we feel that improving workplace air quality during COVID-19 could benefit both the practitioner and client. As such, here are some general workplace basics to help improve your air quality while at work:


  • Open windows and/or doors for better fresh air exchange. This will allow germs like COVID-19 to be diluted with incoming air.


  • Turn on the general ventilation system (HVAC) during work hours and consider running the system 24/7 until the pandemic is over.


  • Replace HVAC, charcoal, dust, and workplace air filters regularly and according to the manufacturer’s directions. Filters that are not replaced will become ineffective.


  • Place a drop or two of eucalyptus essential oil on an air filter. Eucalyptus oil and many other essential oils are known to have antimicrobial and germicidal qualities.  For example: during World War II, Rosemary branches were burned in hospitals to sanitize the air in patient’s rooms. 


  • If available, use a HEPA air purifier – and follow its instructions for proper use.  Special note: air purifiers with a UV dynamic are known to be germicidal.  


  • Keep all air-ventilated surfaces clear of obstructions (i.e., remove supplies, magazines, decorations, etc.)


  • Keep appropriate workplace products, materials, and linens in air-tight, sealed containers.  


  • Remove excess clutter from the workspace, especially anything that is porous and could harbor viruses or germs – such as papers that are no longer in use, stuffed animals, plastic plants, etc.  


  • Place all wastes that can absorb germs, such as paper towels, gauze, cotton, or other absorbent material, in a sealed bag or container before disposing of in the trash.

  • Use a metal trash can with a self-closing lid. Remove the trash from the spa and replace the trash liner at least once a day.


  • Work outside or in a well-ventilated area, where-ever and whenever possible.


  • Practice social distancing whenever possible.


When adding new air quality practices to your workspace, you should read the manufacturer’s directions if you introduce a new product. These directions will usually include best practices or use. You might find product warnings such as ozone-generating air cleaning devices have been known to create breathing problems for some people, especially those with respiratory difficulty or disease. And some people may be allergic to essential oils, and so forth.


 As we learn more about COVID-19, we will likely learn more air quality practice suggestions. This is not a complete list here, and more information could be posted on news websites or the CDC/Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and NIH/National Institutes of Health website.


Author Selena Belisle is the Founder of CE Institute LLC in Miami FL. She is a retired professional athlete and has been practicing massage and spa services for over 30 years. Selena is an approved CE Provider by NCBTMB & the Florida Board of Cosmetology. She now teaches full time for the Cosmetology and Alternative Health Care Industries. You can learn more about Selena’s training and CE classes at