Irish hair and beauty salons to close under new Covid-19 restrictions

Ireland is moving to Level 5 of the National Framework for Living with Covid-19, with the new restrictions effective from midnight on Wednesday, 21 October.

This follows extensive talks between the Government and public health officials, amid daily rises in cases of Covid-19.

The ongoing increase in cases led to speculation before the weekend about a possible move to another level of restrictions for the whole country.

Ireland’s National Framework for Living with Covid-19 is made up of five levels, with Level 1 being the lowest and Level 5 being the highest in terms of restrictions. The country had been at Level 3, with the three border counties of Cavan, Monaghan and Donegal recently moving to Level 4. The hair and beauty industry was able to remain open under Level 3, but has to close under Levels 4 and 5.

Industry bodies have been updating members on social media to keep them informed of the latest developments.

“The Government has announced a series of enhanced financial measures to support both employers and employees, and a full breakdown of these supports will be posted on our website,” said the Hairdressing Council of Ireland. “They include changes to the EWSS; restoration of the PUP to €350; and the activation of the CRSS scheme. For now, keep doing what you have been doing consistently since we have returned in July. Mind yourselves over the coming days, and the council will be here working on your behalf.”

The Irish Hairdressers Federation expressed its disappointment at the news of the impending restrictions. “We are extremely proud of each of our members, who have carefully followed all necessary measures to combat Covid-19, and will continue to do so upon reopening. We will continue to be here for members of the IHF, offering support and assistance in any way we can. But for now, we need to stay safe and stay home to stop the spread.”

Prior to the Government announcement, Habic urged members to be prepared and make sure clients has all the products they needed to see them through the lockdown period. Later it reminded everyone of its ongoing support. "You are not alone. We are in this together. Habic is here for you,” it said.

Hair and beauty businesses around the country are now using social media to let clients know about available appointment slots and increased opening hours before midnight on Wednesday. Many have expressed their support for the Government decision, saying that the health and safety of staff and clients is the priority.

In making the announcement, Taoiseach Micheal Martin told the country it can still celebrate Christmas 2020 in a meaningful way. “Even as the winter comes in, there is hope and there is light,” he said. “If each of us does what is asked of us for six weeks, we will suppress the virus. Our future is in our hands.”