Information for professionals in the beauty care industry
In beauty care services that use radiation, the maximum exposure caused to the customer is limited by the exposure limit values. The exposure limit value refers to the maximum amount of radiation that can be applied to the customer’s body. It is the responsibility of the service provider to ensure that the customer is not subjected to radiation exceeding the exposure limit value. Care must therefore be taken when purchasing a beauty care device and the restrictions imposed on its use must be checked before the final decision to purchase is taken.
In most cases, radiation exposure is directly related to the output power of the device and the duration of the exposure. The use of beauty care equipment that exceeds the limits, i.e. is capable of producing very high levels of radiation power or energy, is only permitted in the healthcare units. The Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK) monitors the use of radiation outside healthcare units and may restrict or ban the use of devices that are found to be excessively powerful.
In Finland, beauty care equipment must comply with the legal requirements regarding the radiation exposure limits for the general public. The exposure limit values are laid down in Decree 1045/2018 of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and in the STUK regulation S/11/2021. The are only few exceptions that allow the exposure limit values to be exceeded during cosmetic treatments.
The purchase or sale of beauty care equipment is not subject to authorization nor does it require a permit, so anyone can freely purchase even the most powerful equipment available. The restrictions apply to the use of the equipment rather than to its possession, purchase or sale. Therefore, it is not unlawful for a manufacturer or seller of equipment to sell to a beautician a device that the latter is not allowed to use. Instead, the service provider, i.e. the purchaser of the equipment, must be aware of the requirements for the use of radiation and purchase the appropriate equipment.
As a purchaser of equipment, you should be also aware that beauty care devices are virtually always marketed as safe, even if they have a very high radiation output. Instructions for use and brochures may suggest that there is no risk to health from the exposure to radiation. However, advertising claims do not guarantee that devices are safe or compliant with the requirements.