The past weeks we’ve seen other countries easing lockdown and getting hair salons back to business. We tried to gather as much info as possible when it comes to new regulations on hygiene, distances, salon areas, PPE, appointments processes and all those practicalities, and share with you, so that we could all start preparing ourselves for what is coming. What about the human factor though? TIGI hairdressers from Germany, Austria and the USA share their thoughts and experiences after re-opening their salons.
Busy busy busy
The great news is that salons are super busy. Cornelia Spirkner from FriseurTeam in Altötting, Germany says: “It wasn’t just us, but also our customers, who couldn’t wait for our salon to reopen and after 6 weeks many of our clients urgently needed a new haircut or a colour! Fortunately, we have the space to spread our clients over two floors; otherwise it would certainly have given us a problem due to the required minimum distances. And we have been very busy. In fact, at the moment we can hardly manage the countless requests for appointments! But with all the complications and difficulties we have to face, at least that is making us happy! By the end of our first week in business, we have got used to wearing a mask all the time-in fact some people have even commented that we looked stylish!’’
“It’s been a FULL HOUSE!’’ says Sosio Romano from Sosio Romano Hairstyle in Weissach, Germany. ‘‘And that’s the positive way of thinking for the whole Sosio Romano team. The ongoing active communication we had maintained with our clients definitely made it easier for us to get started again. The wellness effect has been taken away from us, but we are trying to maintain our humour and that’s allowed us to master the situation very well!”
Marco Macheiner from Intercoiffure Walter in Kitzbühel, Austria normally spends his working hours looking after Austrian celebrities. Now he’s back in his salon after the lockdown in Austria ended, adapting his work to the new normal. Nevertheless, the celebs have been quick to return to him.
“Our first post-lockdown clients are out and happy! Yes, the regulations seem hard, but I know we’ll quickly get used to them and the more consistently we all adhere to these regulations, the faster we will be able to lift them again. So, it’s a problem worth suffering in the short term, I am quite sure of that!” he comments.
Tough yet doable- safety first
Lots of clients, lots of appointments; busy is good, busy is absolutely needed. How are they copying with all this PPE though?
Cihan Bulut from Erdbeerschnitte in Ludwigsburg, Germany says: ‘‘For sure wearing our masks is an unwelcome change and severely restricts us, but they are necessary at the moment, so we have to accept them. And from my perspective we’re doing everything we can to hopefully put an end to this time, with its consuming regulations and service killers, as soon as we possibly can.”
“We hairdressers are like chameleons. My team and I are taking the current situation as best we can: with humour, but at the same time we are looking after our guests with precision, professionalism and passion’’ he adds. Loving the attitude, Cihan!
”It’s different ! A LOT DIFFERENT!’’ admits Becky Grace Knight from Bespoke Salon in Atlanta, Georgia USA. ‘‘Initially I was worried that the environment would feel cold and ‘transactional’ without waiting areas and magazines and hugs and cups of coffee. But it isn’t. It turns out that the only thing clients really care about is their hair and their hairdresser, the rest doesn’t matter right now.
Wearing a mask all day sucks! The upside is that I get to continue to do what I love, and I know I won’t be wearing a mask behind the chair forever. Drink lots of water. Smile with your eyes. Allow yourself extra time for everything. I have been arriving at the salon 30+ minutes before my first appointment and staying 30+ minutes after my last client leaves. I have also added 15 minutes to each appointment just to make sure I have enough time to clean and sanitize between clients. I am currently NOT offering blow dry services and I am limiting time at the shampoo bowl. This is just where my comfort level is at this moment in time.
All humans in the building wear masks the entire time they are here. Clients are not removing masks at the shampoo bowl, they leave them on as we place colour at the hairline, they are on 100% of the time- and yes, you can detail your clients’ hairline while they are wearing a mask, trust me!”
‘‘Invest in a comfortable mask for yourself with replaceable N95 filters. Comfortable is different for everyone, but I found one that works well for me. Health and safety before cuteness.’’
Finally, she adds ‘‘this is the time when hairdressers, salon owners, business owners, staff and clients need to come together to help each other.”
Yes, Becky, that’s the spirit!
Many thanks for sharing, everyone, also thank you TIGI.
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