'It is going to take years': Salon owner predicts long road ahead for recovery as beauty parlours reopen

A salon owner in Cardiff said it is going to "take years" for her business to recover as she reopens after more than four months closed.

Jayne Gooding, who owns Lemon Tree Nails and Beauty salon, said it normally takes months to recover after being closed for one week at Christmas so the effects of lockdown will be much worse.

They regularly used facemasks at the salon before coronavirus but now the price of those has increased "dramatically". This paired with expectations of less customers to start with has added to Jayne's concerns about recovering financially from the pandemic.

This comes on the day that beauty salons and tattoo shops are able to reopen in Wales.

Jayne said she spent weeks researching and sourcing the right type of screens that would be effective as well as practical. Credit: ITV Wales

Jayne and her staff have not been able to see customers for more than four months but on Monday 27 her business was finally able to open again.

She is feeling a mixture of nerves and excitement to see her clients again after so long away. She said: "The first thing everyone will want to do is give each other a hug, but of course we can't do that!"

For the past few weeks Jayne had been preparing and researching to make sure the salon was ready to open safely when July 27 came.

Some of the measures that have had to be put in place include screens, the wearing of visors and facemasks and having reduced staff and customer numbers in the shop at any one time so as to maintain social distancing.

One of the financial challenges for Jayne when making her workplace 'covid-safe' was sourcing PPE. While her staff are used to wearing masks for certain procedures, they now have to be worn at all times and when purchasing them, Jayne found the price had risen "dramatically".

There will be fewer staff working at the salon at any one time so social distancing can be maintained. Credit: ITV Wales

Jayne can finally start bringing in customers but she is still concerned it will "take years" to recover from being closed for so long.

She said that they normally shut for one week over Christmas time and it takes "two months to recover from that, so if you put it into perspective, it's going to be a long time".

She is also expecting a drop of as much as 20 per cent in their usual takings because she thinks some clients will not come back straight away. Some may still be shielding, others may not feel safe and, she said, some will just have gotten used to not having their nails done.

Jayne is optimistic that customers will "eventually come back but it's going to take time".

Beauticians will have to carry out procedures like painting nails from behind a screen. Credit: ITV Wales

Nicole Gooding, who co-owns and manages Lemon Tree Nails and Beauty, said because they need to abide by social distancing they can only have a limited amount of staff working at any one time.

This means less income and Nicole will be starting shifts earlier and finishing later to make up for this.

Beauty salons were able to reopen in England two weeks earlier than they were here in Wales. Credit: ITV Wales

Arcades, galleries and massage therapists were also able to reopen on Monday for the first time since March, while face masks are now mandatory on public transport.

Hospitality businesses may be able to open up their indoors spaces from August 3 as lockdown restrictions are eased further.