For many, a trip to the hairdressers or a beauty salon is at the top of their wishlist following months of lockdown.
Currently there are no official guidelines on what will be required of the hair and beauty industry when they reopen.
However salons have been getting ahead of the game, installing perspex screens and creating their own PPE packs to keep staff and clients safe.
Edinburgh salon owner Dian Ward has been preparing by removing stations so customers are socially distanced and installing screens for safety.
“We came up with the idea of each individual client having their own pack,” Dian explains.
“So within the pack, if you just have your hair cut and blow dried, you’ll have a gown, towel and mask.
“The packs, gowns, towels and masks can all be washed at 60 degrees. We’ve got screens obviously at our reception desk, at our nail bars.
“We’ve taken away five positions so you can do your social distancing right through the salon.”
Beauty salons have also been preparing for what treatments will look like after restrictions have lifted.
Jasmin French, who owns a nail bar, says: “Through the back we’ve got a perspex screen for the nails, because obviously the girls are going to be in shields and masks and all clients will have to wear a mask as well.
“We’ve got a hand sanitiser station which we’ll have at the door, they just pop their hand under and sanitise. And we will be asking everyone to arrive in a mask.”
But while salons busy themselves for returning customers, there have been concerns raised about the lack of industry specific guidance from the government.
Marc McCune from National Hair and Beauty Federation, the UK’s largest trade association for hairdressing, barbering and beauty salon owners, says: “We’re thrown into the same sector as retail or hospitality.
“Now we’re quite different to a bar or restaurant, we’re going to have to be in close proximity to people.”
Despite concerns, the Scottish Government isn’t recommending the beauty industry reopens until phase three of the lockdown exit strategy.
Which means salons may have to wait a few more weeks until they reopen, regardless of safety measures they have already put in place.
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