As some states begin to ease stay-at-home orders and enter the first phases of reopening post-quarantine, some stylists are getting ready to head back to the salon. As this begins, we want to make sure salons and stylists are promoting their own safety and the safety of their clients.
Depending on where you are located, you may be required to follow certain state-specific safety guidelines. In Colorado, for example, salons are allowed to reopen, but staff members and stylists must wear face masks and gloves, and no walk-ins are allowed. In Ohio, some salons are requiring customers to take their temperature and fill out a questionnaire regarding their health before coming in; others are serving a single client at a time. The state of Georgia has issued an extensive set of guidelines for salons and stylists to follow.
If you are getting ready to head back to the salon, it’s important that you know and follow your state and county’s official guidelines on reopening. You can find more information about salons opening in each state here, or by checking your state Board of Barbering and Cosmetology website. In addition to official state guidelines for reopening, there are some simple but effective safety practices you can follow to keep yourself and others healthy and safe. Keep reading to see our top tips for stylists getting ready to get back behind the chair!
Make a Plan
Before reopening, all salons should have a safety plan and should make sure that all stylists and staff members are aware of and fully trained on it. This plan should include the salon’s procedures for cleaning and disinfecting workspaces, social distancing, and personal hygiene (for example, how often should employees wash their hands?). The plan should also detail whether employees/clients are required to wear face masks and/or gloves, take their temperatures before entering the salon, or fill out questionnaires detailing their current health status and whether or not they have been experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms. You can find more information on creating a health and safety plan for your business on the CDC’s website.
Educate Yourself & Others
Before getting back behind the chair, brush up on your skills with free online educational courses from Keune. Currently, Keune is offering an array of training sessions and classes online, all available at no cost. You can refresh your coloring, cutting, and styling skills from the comfort and safety of your home before heading back to the salon. You can find more information about Keune’s online courses on their Facebook page.
Get Barbicide Certified
Another way to let your clients know that you care about their safety is to get Barbicide certified. As of May 1, 2020, the Barbicide Certified Safe Service Establishment program—created by Intercoiffure America Canada, Barbicide, and Beauty Cast Network—allows salons to become certified in 20 best practice standards regarding infection control. Certified salons receive a custom certificate and weekly checklist to ensure compliance. Additionally, certified salons receive a digital credential which they can then share on social media and other online platforms and will be included in Barbicide’s online Safe Service Establishment finder.
You can find more information about Barbicide certification here.
Implement Social Distancing in the Salon
According to all major health organizations and disease experts, the primary way in which COVID-19 is spread is through a person’s respiratory droplets, which they emit when they cough, sneeze, etc. The best way to prevent the spread of the disease is to remain at least six feet apart from others. Of course, this simply isn’t possible when you’re working on a client. For this reason, stylists and clients should wear protective face coverings to protect others. All other people in the salon—including other stylists, staff, and clients, should practice social distancing by staying at least six feet apart.
It’s also a good idea (and, in some states, required) to limit the number of people allowed in the salon at one time. Avoid seeing walk-ins and instead require that all clients have set appointment times to reduce the number of people inside. You can also ask clients to wait outside, rather than inside, to help promote social distancing.
Clean & Disinfect Regularly
Your salon should be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized prior to reopening, even if it was already cleaned before or after you closed. All customers should receive a clean cape, laundered between each use. Additionally, stylists should wear a clean, freshly laundered smock when serving each new client. Every client should get a protective neck strip or towel (freshly washed), and all PPE (face masks, gloves, etc.) should be changed after every single client. Barbicide should be changed daily (at minimum) or sooner if it becomes contaminated at any point. Sinks and hoses should be cleaned and disinfected after each use, and avoid having customers pick up or touch any retail items they do not buy.
If You’re Still Waiting for Salons to Reopen
Not all states have allowed salons to reopen. For those who are still unable to return to work, it’s a great time to advance your education and skill with Keune’s free online education courses. If possible, encourage clients to pre-purchase services or buy gift certificates for later dates. The most important thing to remember is to keep communication with your clients open.
Keune, for the salon professional since 1922.