Like many people in the beauty industry, Dennie Smith’s phone has been ringing as people clamor for dates when salons reopen in England on Monday.
Her unisex Vintage 62 barbershop in South Croydon only had two 45-minute slots for the rest of April, and May is almost fully booked. “We’ve been inundated, my phone is literally running 24/7,” said Smith, who has spent the last few days completely redecorating the living room in time for the grand reopening. “I have spoken to hundreds of people and they are all delighted to be back.”
Most people go for a full cut and color, a complete overhaul in time for what should be a busy summer of reunions and, if the roadmap goes as planned, events, festivals and maybe. even a vacation abroad. “Normally I would have a cut and blow-dry in those 45-minute intervals, but people want massive restyles now, so each date will take longer,” Smith said.
Still, there is still uncertainty around what is allowed under the new rules, after guidelines posted on the government website said hair and beauty salons “should consider providing shorter treatments. and more basic to reduce the time to a minimum ”.
Labor MP Judith Cummins, co-chair of Parliament’s all-party group on beauty, aesthetics and wellness, said the rules showed a “sloppy approach”. Last year, the government was accused of sexism when the beauty industry was overlooked in plans to reopen.
But after 12 months of continued lockdowns, lost revenue and restrictions, business owners are relieved to see increased demand for hair and beauty care, just as pubs and restaurants reopen across England, even if they are booked outside at the moment.
“I have noticed a massive uptake among people wanting to invest in skin care and permanent makeup,” said Emily Guerin, owner of a beauty salon in Edenfield, Lancashire. “I think a lot of people who were always afraid to spend that kind of money on treatment decided they wanted to do a little more for themselves. I think self-care has been such a big thing over the past 12 months, mentally and physically.
Lucie Grech, the owner of Laser Lounge Media City in Manchester, is so busy after the lockdown that she had to hire an additional staff member. “I have seen a massive increase in the number of people investing money in themselves. My treatments are obviously quite expensive, the cheapest thing I do is probably £ 400 and I can’t believe how many people I have booked, ”she said.
Many of her clients said they saved money during the lockdown by not going on vacation or a night out. “People can’t go anywhere, they can’t do anything, and I think people are just spending themselves. A lot of people said they chose to do this instead of going to Marbella or wherever they were going to go, and a lot of people used money they paid back while on vacation.
While many people are already seeing a high demand for appointments, the industry will only get busier and busier as the company begins to open up more.
“Obviously when the clubs reopen and the parties start happening it could definitely increase demand, but I think vacationing abroad will really make a difference. When people are getting ready to leave, they want to look good, especially if they go abroad, and that will obviously have a big impact on the industry, ”said Tinu Abi, owner of House of Tinu in Manchester.
But before that even happens, it seems that after a long winter stuck at home for no reason to dress, many are desperate for an excuse to look their best.
“I think a lot of people are fed up with seeing themselves at home with their roots, split ends and all,” said Maddi Cook, hair extension specialist and founder of the Boss Your Salon mentorship group. “I think we’ll see a lot of really glamorous people in not-so-glam settings in the next few months. “