No, that is not a risk for HIV. Once the virus is exposed to air, it is inactivated. The only way adults get HIV is to have unprotected vaginal or anal sex or share IV drug needles. And reusing a cotton ball with blood on it would be beyond unlikely. That falls into the category of irrational fear. If you have those a lot, it would be best to talk to someone about anxiety. You won't be alone, many suffer this type of health anxiety.
Your situation involves personal contact with an object in air ( gauze, blood etc.). You will be happy to learn that you had no risk, because you can't get hiv from personal contact except unprotected penetrating vaginal or anal, neither of which you did and you didn't share hollow needles to inject with which is the only other way to acquire hiv. Analysis of large numbers of infected people over the 40 years of hiv history has proven that people don't get hiv in the way you are worried is a risk.
HIV is a fragile virus in air or saliva and is effectively instantly dead in either air or saliva so the worst that could happen is dead virus rubbed you, and obviously anything which is dead cannot live again so you are good. Blood and cuts would not be relevant in your situation since the hiv has become effectively dead, so you don't have to worry about them to be sure that you are safe.
There is no reason for a person to test when they are safe. The advice took into consideration that the other person might be positive, so move on and enjoy life instead of thinking about this non-event. hiv prevention is straightforward since there are only 3 ways you can become infected, so next time you wonder if you had a risk, ask yourself this QUESTION. "Did I do any of the 3?" Then after you say "No, I didn't" you will know that it's time to move on back to your happy life.
No one got hiv from what you did during 40 years of hiv history and no one will get it in the next 40 years of your life either. You can do what you did any time and be safe.
You are not a doctor so should stop poking and irritating your lymph or whatever you poked. There is no purpose in describing the swab anymore either, since it can't give you hiv or asking if it is dangerous when you were told it is not.
can i get HIV if i test myself for HIV with Alere HIV Combo ag/ab test strip . I heard that the test strips contain HIV antigens. After holding the test strip without wearing gloves, I went to the toilet. I washed my genitals and anus. Can HIV components on the test strip infect me?