Even though Los Angeles County has not given the order for esthetics and beauty salons to reopen their doors, stylists are already preparing to serve their clients under the new coronavirus prevention regulations.
"The new rules will affect our income, but my health and that of my clients come first”Says Juan Carlos Barbosa, owner of the Beauty Emporium salon in the city of Cudahy.
The stylist with more than 24 years of experience comments that he has already started making changes to his salon to be ready for reopening, once Los Angeles County gives the green light.
"The protocols are going to be different. The living room, the workstations and the door handles have to be disinfected with chlorine or other cleaning products, ”he says.
further going to work by appointment, and not accepting clients who show up unexpectedly.
"When the client arrives, they must speak on the phone before entering to ensure that the previous one has already left, and the station where they will be treated is clean and disinfected," he says.
At the entrance, there will be an antibacterial hand gel, but you will be given the option to proceed to wash your hands.
"When working on the client, whether it is a haircut or dye, we will provide disposable masks"
The beauty products for sale will not be able to touch them nor will there be test products to avoid any outbreak of contagion.
The plan is to start working at 25% capacity without crowds. "The workstations will be located six feet away. As we are several stylists, perhaps we will have to program ourselves per day ”.
They will also have to wash their hands for 20 seconds after serving each client.
Juan Carlos, who has been closed for two and a half months, acknowledges that it has been a very difficult season in economic terms. “I applied for small business support two months ago. So far I have had no response. I have had to use my savings to survive, but I am already reaching my limit ”, he explains.
On May 26, the California Department of Public Health announced that counties that have proven they meet the criteria to expedite reopening may reopen beauty salons and barbershops with modifications such as face masks for both the barber, stylist and customers.
Permitted activities include cuts and dyes, straightening, waving, extensions, braids, hair treatments, and wig maintenance.
It was not authorized to open nail salons or offer services that require touching the client's face such as waxing and threading, shaving, facials, and applying eyelashes.
"Together Californians have limited infections in our state, and because of this work, many counties have made the decision to restore hair and barber services with modifications," says Dr. Sonia Angell, director of the Department of Public Health.
However, he says that COVID-19 is still present in communities and there is a risk. "As we venture out of the house, it is critically important to maintain physical distance, wear face masks in public, and wash our hands frequently to protect ourselves and those around us."
Another measure that beauty salons must comply with will be: take the temperature and ask all clients, workers, contractors and vendors about the symptoms of the coronavirus.
María Teresa Villarreal, founder of the Association of Barbershop and Cosmetology Employers of Southern California and owner of the Cosmetic Beauty School in Downey, where also the most gifted students offer salon services, says that she plans to set up a tent outside to take the temperature and have them fill out a questionnaire.
"We are going to have to put divisions, and establish an area so that the client can stay away and in social distance when he is waiting with the hair dye."
In fact, he says they have no idea how many lounges they are going to open once the Los Angeles county authorizes it, but what he does know is that they are already preparing to comply with the rules. “We are seeking to establish a kind of forgiveness that exempts us from responsibility in the event that a client becomes infected with the virus. We have to protect ourselves, "he says.
It was March 19 when the Governor of California issued an order for all Californians to remain in their homes and prevent the progression of the coronavirus. The mandate included the closing of businesses considered non-essential such as barber shops and beauty and nail salons.