All too often I get calls from people saying their facial steamer just stopped working! This seems to always happen on a Friday and you’ve got appointments booked through the weekend. It will take a week to get a new steamer and now you have no choice but to spend more money on expedited shipping, re-schedule appointments or do the dreaded steam-less facial. Follow these simple steps to avoid having this happen to you and losing business.
1 – Buy your facial steamer from a reputable company.
If I had a dollar for every person that called me in a panic saying, “I just broke my steamer jar…I need a replacement ASAP!” I usually ask them where they got it and they proudly tell me about the great buy they found on eBay. That price may have looked good at the time, but now you can’t find a replacement jar, thermostat or heating element to fix your steamer. New Facial Steamers are not that expensive these days. Always buy from a company that will be able to supply you with basic replacement parts. It will pay off in the end and it’s just a matter of time before you’ll need them.
2 – Use distilled water in your facial steamer.
I know it may be tempting to just use tap water when you run out of distilled, but don’t do it! Most facial steamers require distilled water for a reason. Tap water often contains impurities and other minerals that will build up on the important parts of your steamer, eventually causing it to fail when you need it most. Couple this with the fact that a steamer with mineral deposits may end up spitting hot water at your client’s face, causing you embarrassment, a repeat customer, and a potential lawsuit. Distilled water has been purified through a rigorous boiling process and condensed into a clean container. Using distilled water might not be the most convenient, but it is well worth it when you consider the life of your steamer and facial clients.
3 – Clean your facial steamer regularly.
To keep your facial steamer in peak performance, make sure you clean it regularly and follow these simple guidelines. You should never leave water in the jar over night. Make sure you empty the jar and let it dry, refilling with new distilled water prior to your next use. Deposits will build up eventually, so run a water and vinegar solution through your steamer once a month or more depending on how much use it gets.
Put 2 tablespoons of white vinegar in the jar filled with distilled water. Turn on the steamer and let the machine steam for 30 seconds, but do not turn on the ozone light if you have one. Turn off the facial steamer and let it sit for 15 minutes to let the vinegar solution do its work. Do not leave it longer as it may corrode the heating coils if left to sit too long. Finally, empty the steamer and refill with fresh distilled water. Again, heat to steam and let it run for about 10 minutes.
This process should be done away from client rooms or closed spaces as the vinegar solution can create quite a pungent odor when heated. If the steamer still puts off a vinegar odor, repeat the final step running new distilled water through the steamer until the odor is eliminated.
Maintaining your facial steamer properly can take some time, but it’s well worth it when you consider the consequences of lost revenue, lost clients and cost to replace it. Always buy from a reputable company so you can get those replacement parts when you need them. I recommend having a 2nd glass jar on hand at all times just in case. Lastly, you might want to invest in a mini or portable facial steamer as a backup. It’s not necessarily great for permanent setup in your treatment room, but could save the day in a pinch.