Author(s): Fourie A., Singh T.

Source: Current Allergy & Immunology. June 2022. Vol 35, No.2

Abstract: Cosmetologists may specialise in different types of beauty treatment, including hairdressing, the application of cosmetics, manicures or pedicures (including nail adornment) and body massage therapy. In this case, a 27-year-old cosmetologist with work-aggravated contact dermatitis is discussed. She developed severe contact dermatitis of the hands. The case illustrates the challenges in determining whether the condition is occupational or work-aggravated, which is important in limiting exposure to the causative agent. As the reactions were around her fingernails and on her fingers and she worked with hairdressing chemicals, the patient was asked to submit herself to testing to determine whether she was sensitised to the chemicals used in hairdressing and/or nail treatment or adornment processes. Using both hairdressing and meth (acrylate) series of patches, patch tests were done to determine whether the hairdressing products she used regularly and/or the acrylate-based nail products, which are applied to both her clients’ and her own nails, were the causative agents. Sensitisation to substances from both series was detected and the chemicals were found in both the products used in the workplace and those for personal use. The importance and the complexity of managing patients with both occupational and non-occupational exposures are highlighted in this study.

Keywords: cosmetologist, hairdressing, contact dermatitis, occupational exposure, non-occupational exposure