Beauty salons among shops to reopen across the South East

Video report by ITV News Meridian's Mary Stanley

Beauty salons, tattoo studios and tanning centres were the latest businesses across the South East to reopen today (13 July).

Spas, massage studios and physical therapy businesses are also able to open their doors again.

However many treatments, considered high risk, are still banned which has left some businesses worried if they can survive the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Government guidance states that face waxing, eyelash treatments, make-up application and facials should not be provided because of the greater risk of Covid-19 transmission. 

Screens and barriers will be in place between customers and staff in many premises, with increased surface cleaning and hand washing enforced.

Cannelle Med Spa in Oxford Credit: ITV News Meridian

At Cannelle Med Spa in Oxford, there are 500 customers on the waiting list.

It is now being kept open 12 hours a day in order to cope with the demand.

Owner France Baudet says: "I am happy. We are all a little bit scared of course because it's still a bit risky but if we wash our hands and follow the rules, I think we should be fine."

Meanwhile it has been a challenging time for family-run salon The Sunrooms in Romsey in Hampshire.

Businesses in England will be required to meet coronavirus guidelines, like this one in Romsey. Credit: ITV News Meridian

New rules and social distancing mean it still only able to operate at 40 per cent capacity, however co-owner Sam Burden says it's great to see clients again.  

Sam says: "It's really nice to be able to reopen and see some of our clients. It is frustrating that we can't reopen all of the business, but really nice to start seeing some of our clients again."

Reopening these businesses has taken weeks of preparation, says the owner of Relax Gorgeous tanning salon in Folkestone in Kent.

Extra cleaning has been put in place across salons in the South East. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Lex Kirkham says: "We've really had to work hard to get the shop ready. We've had to close down one of our sun beds to minimise the amount of people that are in the salon at the same time. We're making sure that it is a one-in-one-out policy, so no bringing friends along. It's a small salon so I've had to work out how to use the space wisely, but I think I've made it work and I think my clients will really like it."

Meanwhile Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged the public to wear face coverings in shops, and said an announcement on whether their use will be compulsory in England will be made in the coming days.