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Stylists And Barbers Ready To Make The Cut

AN exterior shot of The Color Company, a hair salon.

(Kirma Swords Schulz, WFIU/WTIU News)

Indiana’s stay-at-home order has been in effect for more than a month. All non-essential businesses are closed including your favorite barbershop or hair salon.

Our City Limits: Coronavirus series has been flooded with questions about hair - when will salons reopen? What guidelines will they have to adhere to and how will they ensure their clients safety?

Segran Bricker Blake is the owner and a stylist at The Colour Company on Pete Ellis Drive in Bloomington.

Blake says she and her seven stylists haven’t been able to take clients since March 24.

Hair stylists are licensed through The Indiana Professional Licensing Agency. The agency provides a multitude of licenses, and Blake’s is in Cosmetology. 

“I haven’t received any specific guidelines and safety precautions for when we are able to reopen,” says Blake, “But I plan to take extra precautions sterilizing and limiting the number of stylists and clients in the salon at a time.”

She says she and her stylists had to cancel weeks of appointments on their books with no advance notice.

“I received information from the governor’s address on March 23 that I had to close the next day by 11:59 p.m.”

READ MORE: Can I Go For A Walk? Here's What The Expanded 'Stay-At-Home' Order Really Does

Blake says she could lose her license if she violates Governor Eric Holcomb’s business restrictions. Blake says there is a process of warnings, a cease and desist notice and fines. A business only loses its license if it ignores all those warnings.  

The governor is poised to announce modifications to the statewide stay-at-home order today but he hasn’t released any information about what restrictions he may relax.

Blake says she’s taken a big financial hit because of the closure and it will take time to overcome it. She applied for a small business loan, but is still waiting to hear back. 

Meanwhile, Blake says her clients have been understanding of the situation and many have thanked her for taking the health crisis seriously and handling her business responsibly.

“I’ve received phone calls and texts from clients checking in. The kindness has been heartwarming.”

Still, many of Blake’s clients are anxiously awaiting her to reopen.

The hashtag #COVIDCuts has been trending on social media since the coronavirus pandemic forced salons across the country to close. People are showing off and often laughing off their at-home haircuts and styles.

Blake says she does anticipate some hair disasters.

“We’ve encouraged clients to wait, and not attempt home hair color and haircuts,” Blake says. “We cannot wait until we are able to reopen and take care of our clients.”

READ MORE: At-Home Haircuts, Dye Jobs And Waxing: How To Avoid A DIY Beauty Disaster

As Blake continues to wait for word from the governor, she’s researching best protocols for reopening. It’s clear things will be dramatically different at her shop, but still she’s optimistic about the future.  

“The comeback will be greater than the setback.” 

For the latest news and resources about COVID-19, bookmark our Coronavirus In Indiana page here

Want to contact your legislators about an issue that matters to you? Find out how to contact your senators and member of Congress here.

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