Home DIY projects are a becoming more and more popular – especially among women. Completed projects give a feeling of achievement and pride and can be very fulfilling. Some women may be new to the field of DIY, but that’s great and the more the merrier. Women are patient, thorough, and adopt a no-nonsense approach when things need to get done and hey, we clean up afterwards too. The old exasperated saying of ‘’I need a man’’ is a thing of the past, and DIY is handled quite spectacularly by women on their own. But as with any project from gardening to putting up a shelf, there are some basic safety precautions we need to take care to adhere to, so that we may keep all our fingers in place to hold a glass of wine when we are finished and want to celebrate a job well done. Here are my top DIY saftey tips for women.
1. Find out Everything
Make a complete list of everything you may possibly need to complete your project. Don’t cut corners and read all the directions on the products and labels. Make a strict rule to abide by the directions, and take the precautions that are recommended. Accidents happen when we are too much in a hurry, too impatient, cut corners, don’t have the correct tools or equipment, or simply just don’t bother to read the instructions.
2. The Importance of Safety Goggles
You may not think so, but a huge percentage of serious injuries to the eyes, happen in the comfort of your own home. Whether you are planting flowers, using a beater in the kitchen, sanding a floor, using a weed eater on the lawn – safety glasses or goggles are your new best friend. There is a vast array or styles, colors and fit, Get snug fit ones that suit your budget and use them whenever you are doing DIY: Painting, using a drill, sanding floors, working with cleaning products, fertilizers and chemicals – everything.
We may think that a chainsaw is more dangerous than a ladder, but be careful here. A ladder is a handy DIY item that can cause serious injury if not used correctly, is in a state of disrepair or not intact. Here are the 6 Cardinal Rules for using a ladder.
• Always lock an A frame ladder in the open position.
• Never put a ladder in front of a door that could swing outward knocking you off without locking the door first.
• Don’t ever step on the top 2 rungs on any ladder.
• Always make sure your ladder is on a level surface.
• Don’t work on a ladder while you are alone, grab an assistant and you will have somebody to drink wine with after the job is done.
• Don’t use a metal ladder near any electrical points.
4. Plumbing, Gas and Electrics
Women are amazing and we can do anything we put our minds to, no question, but when it comes to these three things: Plumbing, Gas and Electrical work – it is time to call in the professional and throw money at it. This is however, different to calling a man, and not only allowed, but very much encouraged. Unless you are indeed qualified for these particular fields, don’t go there. You could put yourself, your family and your neighbors in jeopardy and quite serious danger. Plus, when you completely blow the power around the entire block, your fridge won’t be able to chill your wine for you – nothing like a bit of perspective.
5. Face Masks
Not the ones that you mash up avocado for, but the ones that protect our precious breathing apparatus – our lungs. If any of the directions for your DIY project call for respirators or dust masks, make sure you get some.
In fact, safety glasses and respirators should be standard when working at home. Dust, sand, chemicals, and fumes will all have an adverse effect on our delicate lung tissue. You can get a variety of masks for working with different products, like chemicals or particles. Get a couple of each as many of them are disposable. They are handy to have in the house for any job you may need to do, just like sticking a heel back to your favorite set of pumps with a superglue.
6. Dress Accordingly
Things like long bell sleeves, long chains of beads, chunky jewelry, flip slops, chandelier earrings, and other fashion accessories could potentially put you in a dangerous position when you are busy working with machinery during your DIY project. Yes, I know those skinny women on the TV DIY show are wearing kitten heels and have just had their hair blow dried, without breaking one bead of sweat, while wielding a drill.
And, I know they flick their perfectly manicured hands through their perfect hair and proceed to serve homemade lemonade on their brand new table they made from scratch in an hour – but any woman who has done any DIY in their life, knows that is definitely not real life. Long sleeves and jewelry can get caught up in machinery, and flip slops and bare feet leave soft areas of your body exposed. You wouldn’t go to the gym wearing a sarong, so don’t do DIY wearing your Friday afternoon drinks-with-the-girls-clothes.