CANTON, N.Y. (WWNY) - Hair salons are open, but everything is different. They’re on the front lines of trying to contain COVID-19.
While people are getting their hair cut and styled again, there's more sanitizing going on.
And customers hanging out for the latest gossip? That's done with.
“Now you're limited to who can be in here. It's one person per stylist. You get the job done … and it's kind of out the door they go,” said Stephen Russell, Hair Designs co-owner.
Hair styling is an intimate business. That's why the state has piled on page after page of “guidance."
“They have face masks. They got shields. They have to change the cape on the customer every time. … We have a disinfectant barrel for all the gloves and stuff to keep it separated,” said Russell.
Don't follow the guidance, maybe lose your license. The county's reopening task force has fielded innumerable questions about it.
“I think if you understand it, you can proceed with a right head and make smart decisions for yourself as a business owner and for the customers and the community,” said Brooke Rouse, St. Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce executive director.
The task force distributed 150 face shields to hair salons over the weekend. Still, salon owners worry about customers' health and their own.
The state mandates customers be asked screening questions for COVID-19.
“Is everybody going to be truthful to you? Probably. But there are a lot of people that don't even know if they have it,” said Russell.
At Hair Designs they're keeping the rules in plain sight for all to see.
Of course there's another fear: What if COVID-19 cases spike again and the state again closes down businesses?
It’s another reason most hair salon owners are being so careful. They say they know their efforts can help avoid that.