The UK has been under lockdown for two months to prevent the spread of COVID-19. People had only been able to leave their homes for essential purposes, such as buying food and medicine. However, the Government recently began to ease some lockdown measures, prompting many to wonder when personal care businesses such as nail salons will be allowed to reopen.
The nationwide lockdown started at the end of March.
Businesses across the UK have been forced to close their doors, including Britain’s beauty industry.
Hairdressers and nail salons have had to close due to the risk of spreading COVID-19.
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By their very nature, nail salons and hairdressers result in close proximity interactions between customers and technicians.
In some parts of Europe, beauty retailers have reopened under new social distancing guidelines.
However it appears unlikely nail salons or hairdressers will be reopening in the UK any time soon.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the COVID Alert System earlier this month, which the Government will use going forward to determine the risk of COVID-19 in the UK.
The UK is currently at stage four of the UK, but the Government will gradually start to ease measures in stage three of the plan over the coming weeks and months.
Mr Johnson was keen to stress further measures will only be lifted “if, and only if, the numbers support it”.
The UK’s exit from lockdown is expected to be phased, and completed very slowly to reduce the risk of a second spike in cases.
If the data supports the measures, the Government has indicated some non-essential shops could start to reopen from June.
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When will nail salons be able to reopen?
An exact date for when nail salons will be able to reopen has not yet been given.
However nail salons and other beauty establishments are not expected to reopen until July at the earliest.
The Government outlines in its recovery strategy document: “It is likely that reopening indoor public spaces and leisure facilities (such as gyms and cinemas), premises whose core purpose is social interaction (such as nightclubs), venues that attract large crowds (like sports stadia), and personal care establishments where close contact is inherent (like beauty salons) may only be fully possible significantly later depending on the reduction in numbers of infections.
“The government’s current planning assumption is that this step will be no earlier than 4 July, subject to the five tests justifying some or all of the measures below, and further detailed scientific advice, provided closer to the time, on how far we can go.”
When the data does support the reopening of nail salons, it is unclear what social distancing practices will need to be enforced.
In other parts of the world, beauty services have reopened with enhanced health and hygiene practices.
Social distancing measures have been implemented within salons, and in many cases people are being asked to wear face masks.
The National Hair and Beauty Federation (NHBF) has written an open letter to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Alok Sharma, calling for clarification from the Government on how guidelines will impact on the sector.
The NHBF is also asking for clarification on what the social distancing and PPE requirements will be when salons are allowed to reopen.
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