Medical Waste Considerations for Med Spas

Medical Waste Considerations for Med Spas

June 23, 2021

Med Spas have grown in popularity. These facilities often offer specialty specific services such as chemical peels or laser hair removal, while others provide a range of cosmetic services such as Botox, lip fillers, permanent makeup or laser treatments.

The term “med spa” defines services that involve non-invasive or non-surgical aesthetic services and procedures that must be performed under the supervision of a licensed physician, plastic surgeon, dermatologist, and/or aesthetician. All procedures are to be performed under qualified, trained, and hopefully experienced practitioners and staff. On-site supervision by a licensed healthcare professional is mandatory.

Does your facility provide med spa treatments such as Cool Sculpting®, Botox®, or cosmetic procedures such as dermabrasion, dermaplaning, and derma fillers? Laser hair removal and hair replacement services are considered aesthetic medical procedures, as is liposuction to sclerotherapy to a ‘vampire facelift’. If yes, you are a healthcare waste generator - we're here to support you with education on safe disposal and management.


Medical Waste Considerations


All such procedures as listed above produce medical waste. Is your facility compliant when it comes to medical waste considerations and disposal processes? Do your employees know how to identify which tools or equipment used in the procedures are deemed ‘regular’ or potentially ‘hazardous’ medical waste? Do they know how to properly dispose of sharps? Do you freeze fat cells?

Do you perform laser hair removal or offer Botox injections to remove wrinkles? Any services that are considered a medical procedure, such as those performed at a med spa, identifies your business as a medical facility. Your facility will generate medical waste. Therefore, segregating, packaging, labelling, and disposal of that medical waste must be compliant under government regulations in regard to healthcare waste management.

In many Med Spa scenarios, two primary types of waste are common:

  • Sharps Waste - Needles and related sharps used for patient care
  • Pharmaceutical Waste - Vials containing more than 3% drug volume or expired/partially used medications  

Let's dive in a little more....

About Sharps Waste Generated by Med Spas


The majority of Med Spas use sharps, which are considered to be anything that can poke, slash, pierce, or cut skin. When it comes to sharps in this business, sharps are most often applicable to needles, syringes, and potentially broken vials that contained chemicals or fillers. Do you know what to do with your needles and the proper process for sharps disposal?

  • Must be disposed of in a compliant sharps container
  • Compliant sharps containers are leak-proof, puncture-proof, and resistant to crumbling or crushing during installation and transport, and have appropriate safety lids to reduce the risk of needlestick injuries
  • Must be emptied before they are full, typically when they are three-fourths full. The lids must remain closed, have a lid, and in some cases, must be locked
  • Proper location of sharps containers is a must – and definitely not in high traffic areas

Compliant sharps containers should be placed in an upright position in a visible location, within horizontal reach, but slightly below eye level. They are not to be placed near doors, near a light switch, under a sink, and so forth. It is also important that healthcare providers can easily view warning labels as well as determination of the container’s fill status.

Explore Daniels Health's reusable sharps container, Sharpsmart , that excels above and beyond standard safety measures.

Turn to Daniels Sharpsmart Compass for Guidance


Daniels Sharpsmart Compass provides resources, education, products, and knowledge of stat-by-state procedures for compliant and secure disposal of Med Spa medical waste that meet guidelines. We’re dedicated to reducing needlestick injuries through compliant sharps disposal, as well as reducing the volume of medical waste that is sent to landfills. Save money and ensure compliance by following the regulations. For more information on our services and products, call us today.

Article By

Amy Piser

Clinical Waste Educator