Delight as Bridgnorth hairdressers open for business
Hairdressers and barbers have welcomed their long-haired customers back to the hot seat after hanging up their scissors for more than three months.
The latest ease in government restrictions means residents can finally tend to those overgrown locks, despite salons looking eerily similar to an operating theatre due to health and safety measures.
In Bridgnorth, Simply Stylish took its first customer yesterday.
Meanwhile, others such as Hidden Jem's Hair were applying the finishing touches before reopening today.
Both businesses, in Whitburn Street, closed their doors when the coronavirus lockdown was introduced on March 23.
Donna Green has worked at Simply Stylish for 17 years, having owned it for the last 11, and said she had never come across a challenge such as this.
"It's very exciting being able to reopen – it's been a long time coming," she said.
"We've spent so much time completely cleaning the salon, decorating it, scrubbing the floors and preparing all of the PPE and sanitiser we'll need.
"We're all wearing masks, visors and gloves and we've had to tape off chairs to make sure people can keep their distance.
"Everything is working well so far and we're over the moon to reopen."
Donna is the third owner of Simply Stylish, with the business having launched in the 60s.
She said: "The biggest challenge has been getting everything organised and in place in time for this week.
"Working with visors on is also quite challenging. We're doing a very precise job so being able to see through them is obviously vital.
"The changes have restricted what we can do and how much work we can get done.
"We've got to clean between each person and normally, where I'd usually be able to cut hair while waiting for a dry, we can't do that at the moment, but we're adapting to the change."
Meanwhile, Jemma Deeley at Hidden Jem's Hair has been creating a one-way system and redecorating her salon while donning her protective mask and visor.
She said: "It's been a bit nerve-racking, but I've got my buzz back now.
"It's definitely been a mixture of emotions. We knew lockdown was coming but only knew we had to shut for sure one day before so it was a really stressful start and I was wondering what I was going to do to ensure the business could keep going.
"But we're now hoping everything in place is going to work and I'm excited more than anything to open."
Jemma, who opened the salon in 2013, also agreed productivity would be reduced due to the new restrictions and measures hair salons have to put in place, which would in turn affect businesses' capability to make money.
She said: "I'm fully booked at the moment, but we've got to do a clean down in between each client which takes up time. Our diary may not look as busy, but it won't feel like that.
"People's hair is longer now and their roots have grown out too, so it's just getting used to the new way of working.
"I'm hoping we'll be able to go back to normal soon, but if we need to remain as we are, I'd rather do that than put myself and my clients at risk.
"I've been looking forward to seeing all of my lovely clients that have supported me through thick and thin.
"They've been really understanding if I haven't been able to fit them in straight away and just really supportive in general."
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