When will UK beauty salons reopen during coronavirus?

The question of when UK beauty salons, nail bars and hairdressers can reopen during the coronavirus pandemic is a hotly debated issue, which is why we’re separating fact from speculation. 

The Sun newspaper has reported today (April 24) that salons could be shut for more than six months as Government scientists who are working on the coronavirus lockdown struggle to find a safe way to reopen these businesses while the pandemic is still happening.  

Quoting a Government source, the report said, “While some shops may reopen next month, those requiring hands-on contact with punters are deemed highest risk.”

However, the National Hair and Beauty Federation (NHBF) has slammed the story, saying in a statement today: “This information has come from just one of the independent advisory bodies to Government, but this is not Government policy. We feel this type of speculation is very unhelpful and damaging to the industry. Less than a week ago the media published a very different date for when salons might reopen.”

Indeed, there has been speculation elsewhere that UK salons could be among the first, rather than the last, businesses to reopen, with a report in The Telegraph stating, “It’s likely [salons will] be among the first to re-open with the Government's ‘traffic light’ system – which means they could potentially open as early as May 11”. 

Have other countries reopened hair and beauty salons during Covid-19?

What we do know is that several countries have started to loosen their lockdown measures and have allowed some hair and beauty businesses to reopen, but under strict instructions. 

Denmark allowed beauty salons and hairdressers to reopen on April 20 as the country loosened its lockdown measures, having imposed restrictions on movement since March 12. The businesses are having to comply with strict health guidelines on hygiene and distance. 

With its lowest number of coronavirus deaths in two weeks, Germany also reopened some shops on April 20 which included hairdressers, and it is believed that Norway and Switzerland are due to allow hairdressers to open their doors on April 27. 

Spain and France are believed to be planning to keep lockdown in place well into next month. 

A partial easing of restrictions on movement has also been announced in Dubai, with hair and nail salons reopening today (April 24), with capacity limits of how many customers they can see in place. 

The committee stressed that this is by no means a return to business as usual, saying it is “vital that the public follows precautionary and preventative guidelines until the situation is completely normalised".  

In the US, Georgia governor Brian Kemp has unveiled plans to allow some businesses that were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic to reopen, as the state eases restrictions and starts to reopen the local economy. 

According to Kemp’s plans, beauty salons and barbershops could be permitted to reopen today (April 24) but only if they adhere to social distancing requirements, sanitation mandates and meet other safety standards.

UK beauty salons and hairdressers were forced to close on March 23 when Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Covid-19 lockdown measures, and these measures are still continuing today. 

When do you think UK beauty salons and hairdressers should be allowed to reopen? Comment below. 


Check out PB's coronavirus (Covid-19): support guide for beauty salons, spas and self-employed therapists