Hairdressers have been told they must not offer any ‘long treatments’ such as braids and highlights when they reopen on Monday.
Under new rules salons must reduce the time customers spend in their chairs so any services offered should be “short and basic”.
Salons are preparing to be mobbed by shaggy-haired customers when they finally reopen on April 12.
Some have been so inundated by desperate clients that they are booked out for weeks while others are opening their salons at the stroke of midnight to keep up with demand.
But government guidance states hair and beauty salons “should consider providing shorter, more basic treatments to keep the time to a minimum”.
Are you a salon owner or manager with thoughts about these measures? Email email@example.com
This means customers should not be offered any treatments that are seen as a ‘long’ or ‘complex’ procedure such as highlights, braids or deep conditioning treatments.
It also means lengthy massages could be a no-no.
The guidance states that if longer procedures such as braiding or massages are being done salon workers should “consider how the length of the appointment could be minimised”.
Hairdressers are also advised to reduce the use of hairdryers to stop people from raising their voices and not have background music incase it tempts people to sing.
Labour MP Judith Cummins, who co-chairs Parliament’s group on beauty, aesthetics and wellbeing, called the rules ‘woolly and very unclear’.
She told The Telegraph: “What’s a short appointment, and what’s the medium appointment, and what’s a long appointment?
“I’ve got no idea, and I doubt whether the Government has any idea either.
“It’s very difficult to make a living if you’re given guidance that is very woolly and very unclear.”
The beauty industry has taken a battering as hairdressers, barbers, beauty salons and nail bars were among the last to open in July last year after the first lockdown began in March.
They then had to close again in November which means they have been shut for business for a total of almost nine months.
Workers must ensure they maintains a two-metre distance between their colleagues which means they will be unable to treat as many customers before the pandemic.
The British Beauty Council recommends that all workers don staff wear gloves, masks and gowns.
While both staff and customers must wear face coverings.
Social distancing measures between workers and their customers should be followed where possible but the rules accept this may not be possible during an appointment.
Salons must disinfect surfaces regularly, hand sanitisers must offered to customer upon entry and workspaces should be kept clean and tidy with waste removed regularly
Hairdressers are also expected to do all they can to increase ventilation on their premises by keeping doors or windows open.