While much of the beauty industry is yet to reopen in England, all sectors of the industry have been given the green light to resume business in Scotland from July 22.
In Scotland’s official Route Map, published by the Scottish Government online, it is stated: “Beauticians, nail salons, spas and make-up counters have been given an indicative opening date of 22 July subject to physical distancing and enhanced hygiene measures.”
Speaking on July 9, First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that the country was moving into phase three of easing lockdown measures, having now met all six criteria set out by the World Health Organisation. She said: “The next set of changes will take effect from 22nd July. At that time personal retail services, which have not yet been able to reopen, for example beauticians and nail salons, will be able to reopen with enhanced hygiene measures in place.”
“There’s no doubt today’s statement marks the most significant milestone yet in Scotland’s emergence from lockdown,” the First Minister added. “I must stress though, this is one of, if not the highest risk change we have made so far.”
The news will come as a relief to many beauticians and salon owners who would have been left frustrated by the Scottish Government’s initial reopening of hairdressers and barbers on July 15, and reluctance to ease restrictions on beauty salons at the same time.
Unlike the UK Government, who are keeping lockdown restrictions in place for treatments of the face, phase three of the Scottish Government’s Route Map will see the return of all beauty services in Scotland. In their return to work Checklist for Close Contact Retail Services, published online, it is stated: “Specific consideration should be given to employees/operators working in the ‘breathing zone’ or ‘high-risk zone’ of the customer (the area near the eyes, nose or mouth of the customer).”
Such considerations mean minimising the time spent treating high-risk zones, not offering treatments if staff are unable to minimise the time spent treating such zones and implementing additional measures or procedures to mitigate against the heightened risk.
The Scottish Government’s latest easing of lockdown restrictions presents their measured approach to getting the beauty sector back to business, instead of announcing yet another unnecessary blanket ban on services (this time from the neck up) as Boris Johnson’s government has recently done, which is having a devastating impact on the industry.
We are yet to see if and when the UK government will follow Scottish suit.