Salon owner awaiting direction on reopening

Invercargill beauty salon Headhunters is preparing to reopen during Alert Level 2 for its more...
Invercargill beauty salon Headhunters is preparing to reopen during Alert Level 2 for its more than 1000 loyal clients. PHOTO: SUPPLIED
A Southland salon owner is anxiously awaiting direction from the Government as to when she will be able to start rebooking "well over" 1000 clients.

Headhunters owner Amelda Henderson said she was hoping to be able to open her Invercargill salon for "eager clients" when Alert Level 2 kicked in.

"We are left a little stranded as we need to have a start date to be able to do anything at all with appointment shifting and rescheduling, and there are well over 1000 clients to move."

One of the biggest challenges the salon faced was the "huge" backlog of clients and not wanting to keep people waiting for appointments.

"[They] will all be desperate to get their hair and beauty done at the same time when we are allowed back."

Since the lockdown began, it had been "really hard" on the business and its income.

Despite looking forward to reopening, she was concerned about how the business would operate under Level 2 restrictions.

"I am worried there will be so many restrictions on how many people we can have in the salon etc — it will take a while to get back to normal."

Ms Henderson said Level 4 meant the business was bringing in "not a single penny" of income, but the shift to Level 3 enabled her to sell some products online.

"It has definitely helped getting a little in the bank account. Definitely not enough to cover wages or anything but every bit helps."

With 12 staff employed at Headhunters, being able to get the Government subsidy for their wages "saved my bacon", she said.

Despite Covid-19 presenting a lot of uncertainty for the future of small businesses, she was not worried about keeping afloat thanks to an "awesome and supportive" client base.

"[They’ve] done what they can to get us through this, from purchasing retail and contacting us to let us know they will hold out and wait for us.

"It’s actually really humbling. Plus my fabulous team are just all eager to get back and make people feel gorgeous again."

For her and her team, Level 2 would be about taking it "one step at a time".

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