Hair salons are back in business as lockdown’s level three gathers momentum.
Minister of Small Business Development, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, has okayed the formal and informal salons to open but under strict conditions. Salons closed their doors in March as per lockdown decrees which are however threatening jobs in most sectors including the beauty industry.
The Minister gazetted guidelines on Friday following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement that many industries would now reopen under level 3.
Ntshavheni announced that services considered safe to immediately start operations include hairdressing, barbering, nail and toe treatment, facial treatment and make-up, body massage, tattooing and body piercing.
“All personal care businesses, which are allowed to operate, will adhere to the following basic principles applicable to all salons: hand washing, social distancing between customers and staff wherever possible, the use of cloth masks at all times, and more protective masks for close facial contact, and cleaning and disinfecting of touch areas and equipment,” she said.
Ntshavheni also urged the beauty industry to explore contactless payments.
“Meanwhile, employees should be equipped with personal protective equipment (PPE), including visors, while stylists should wear facemasks at all times,” said the Minister.
The Minister warned that all PPE must be cleaned after serving each customer.
“No customer will be served without wearing a mask. Aprons must be changed after serving each customer and reuse can only be done after the apron has been washed with water and soap. Where gloves are required for treatments, they should be changed after each client and should not be shared under any conditions,” she added.
Ntshavheni implored salons to make appointments with clients in order to avoid crowding and queuing.
She added that those who decided to queue for services were obliged to maintain social distance.
“Employees and owners above the age of 60 or with comorbidities must be discouraged from working,” the Minister said.
She warned owners, workers or customers, against visiting salon premises while nursing flu-like symptoms.
She added that an accurate register of customers and persons who enter the salon on each day must be compiled and kept for traceability.
She also announced a blanket ban on eating or drinking in salons.
All bottled products must be wiped down with a 70% alcohol solution after serving each customer, and fresh and clean towels must be used for each customer.