[Updated] Saunas and steam rooms must remain closed after Government announcement

Update: Based on the Government's latest press briefing on August 13, saunas and steam rooms must remain closed until further notice is given.

However, spas may still continue with treatments, now including close-contact services, while indoor and outdoor pools, spa pools and gyms may remain open.

Spas can now offer close-contact treatments, such as facials, after a Government announcement on August 13 that permits businesses to resume treatments from Saturday August 15. “From Saturday, salons, spas and other close contact services across England will once again be able to offer all services in a way that is safe for workers and clients," said business secretary, Alok Sharma.

It was also announced that those offering close-contact services should now wear a face covering and a visor. The statement read that spa staff "should now wear a face mask (type 2 surgical), in addition to a clear visor that covers the face. This will help protect the customer and staff from respiratory droplets caused by sneezing, coughing, or speaking."

The below was correct as of Thursday, July 30: 

The UK Spa Assiociation (UKSA) has received verbal and written confirmation from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) that saunas and steam rooms can reopen in England from August 1.

Saunas and steam rooms can reopen on the condition that social distancing is enforced and the areas are regularly cleaned and sanitised. Face coverings are not necessary for those using the sauna or steamroom facilities, but operators of saunas and steamrooms will need to assess the facilities so that social distancing can be practised by guests. 

According to the UKSA, “This reopening is subject to social-distancing guidelines. Operators of saunas and steamrooms must calculate how many people can be accommodated at one time.

“No face coverings are to be worn in the sauna or steamroom and these facilities must be regularly cleaned.”

The announcement means that saunas and steam rooms will be permitted to reopen on the same day close-contact services, such as facials and facial waxing, can commence.

In a press conference on 17 July, the Government announced that spas could reopen from July 13, with outdoor pools, hot tubs, jacuzzis and whirlpools able to reopen from July 11, and indoor versions to reopen from July 25. 

Prime minister Boris Johnson said, “From August 1, we will be reopening most remaining leisure settings and we will enable close-contact services [such as] beauticians to resume.” 

Find out more about what treatments could have been performed from August 1 and read these tips to welcome clients back to you spa safely and seamlessly.