How to Clean & Disinfect Nail Drill Bits to Keep Them Sharp

How to Clean & Disinfect Nail Drill Bits
How to Clean & Disinfect Nail Drill Bits

In this article I am gonna walk you through the various methods, you can use to correctly clean, disinfect and sterilize your nail drill bits at home.

Now a lot of people underestimate the need to clean your nail drill bits. But properly cleaning your nail drill bits is very important this is because cleaning:

  1. Prevents cuticle and nail infections – You see when you use your nail drill, parts of your skin can be broken. And if your nail bit isn’t properly sterilized the germs on the nail bit can enter your skin and cause an infection.
  2. Keeps your nail drill bit sharp and in good condition – a build up of residue will reduce the effectiveness of your drill bit.

How to Clean Your Nail Drill Bits at Home (Metal or Ceramic)

This method can be used to clean nail drill bits that are made of ceramic, carbide, diamond bits, or any metal nail bit.

  1. The first thing that you need to do is use a stiff brush to brush off any residue such as acrylic dust on the nail bits.
  2. Next, pour acetone into a bowl.
  3. Just ensure that the bowl can handle the acetone.
  4. Now, soak your nail bit for 8-10 minutes inside the acetone.
  5. Finally, once your nail bits have soaked you can leave them to dry and then you can reuse them.

Now when I am dealing with clients I would go a step further by soaking my drill bits in Barbicide to sterilize them after each client. You don’t need to use Barbicide at home but for professional work, your state may require you to do so.

Recommended Brush

You can click here to see the price for a brush specially made to clean nail bits.

This brush works by using the nail bit’s rotation to rapidly clean the bit. It has 2 sections a hard section to clean metal nail bits and a soft section to clean silicone-based nail bits. The case will trap any dust from flying all over.

Nail Drill Bit Disinfectants

The best nail drill bit disinfectants are:

  1. Pure Acetone (Will disinfect and also dissolve any nail product residue stuck on the nail bits)
  2. Barbicide (Will completely sterilize your nail bits)
  3. Isopropyl Alcohol
  4. Soap water mixed with Bleach

1- Acetone

Acetone is what I recommend for cleaning and disinfecting nail drill bits at home. This is because acetone:

  • Dissolves any leftover nail product, such as acrylic, gel or dip powder, that are stuck on the nail bits giving them a nice clean look.
  • Act as a strong disinfectant killing germs and bacteria. Citation.

I recommend using pure acetone to clean your nail bits this is because it is more concentrated and will work faster and be more effective.

You can click here to see the price for a bottle of pure acetone on Amazon.

2- Barbicide

Barbicide is commonly used in hospitals, barbershops, nail and hair salons to sterilize various tools.

It is extremely potent since it is a sterilizing agent which means that it can kill most of the microbes that come in contact with it. Whilst acetone and alcohol are considered disinfecting agents which are less effective.

How to use Barbicide to Disinfect Nail Bits:

  1. Firstly you need to brush and wash off any residue on the nail bits.
  2. Next, mix the concentrate with water using the ratio outlined by the brand that you have.
  3. Then you need to soak your nail drill bits for 10-15 minutes in the Barbicide mixture.
  4. And finally rinse the nail bits off with water.

Barbicide won’t dissolve any leftover nail product on the nail bits. So you will need to wash and brush off any residue on the bits before soaking them in the Barbicide solution.

Now you don’t have to use Barbicide if you are just using your nail bits for personal use. But if you use your nail drill on other individuals, it’s probably a good idea to sterilize them occasionally.

You can click here to see the price for a bottle of Barbicide on Amazon.

3- Isopropyl Alcohol

Isopropyl Alcohol also known as rubbing alcohol can be used to disinfect your nail bits.

Now to use rubbing alcohol to disinfect your nail bits, you just need to:

  • Firstly brush and wash your nail bits with soapy water
  • Next, soak the nail bits in the alcohol for 10-15 minutes.
  • And finally let them air dry.

The drawbacks with using alcohol are:

  1. It won’t break down any residual nail product on the nail bits so you need to wash and brush it before soaking them.
  2. Not as effective as a sterlizing agent like Barbicide.

When using rubbing alcohol to clean your nail bits, you should use 99% alcohol since it is more effective. You can click here to see the price for a bottle on Amazon.

4- Soap Water & Bleach

You can also clean your nail bits by washing and soaking them with soap water mixed with bleach.

The bleach is the disinfecting agent whilst the soap water will wash away and clean any dirt or residue on the nail bits.

How to Clean Mandrills/Sanding Bands

Sanding bands cannot be cleaned and are meant to be used once and then discarded.

But the metal attachment that is used with the sanding band will need to be cleaned just like a regular nail bit.

When Should You Clean Your Nails Drill Bits

Ideally, you should clean your nail bits after each use. But if you use your nail bits only on yourself you can clean it every month.

Now in a professional setting when you are dealing with clients you need to clean your nail bits after each use. This is to prevent the transfer of diseases from one client to another.

Citation & References

E-File Sanitation: Clean Your Bits and Pieces

Acetone sterilization in ophthalmic surgery

Disinfection and Sterilization