Richmond salon owners prepare to get back to business as Virginia begins to reopen

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Salons and barbershops in most of Virginia can open with strict requirements on Friday, under Gov. Ralph Northam’s ‘phase one’ of reopening.

Some local Richmond salons are choosing to delay their reopening a little longer. Kelly Cahen, the owner of 1213 Hair Studio, will wait to reopen her salon until June 1.

“We felt more comfortable waiting a couple more weeks and being solid in that. Some of my staff still have some concerns and the clients still have concerns, so we wanted to make sure everyone’s comfort level was met,” said Cahen.

The salon closed back in March under Northam’s mandate to close non-essential businesses. The governor has announced ‘phase one’ will begin Friday for most of the state, which means salons and barbershops can operate with “strict requirements and face coverings.”

Cahen said they are taking many precautions to be safe, like wearing masks and having clients wait in their cars until the work stations are sanitized. The salon will also pre-screen clients for exposure and symptoms and then check in with them 14 days later. 

Kelly Cahen (right), the owner of 1213 Hair Studio, will wait to reopen her salon until June 1. Kaci Minnick (left) owns Studio Copal, a smaller salon in Carytown. She is the only hair stylist there and plans on reopening May 19, taking on just one client at time.

The studio is also extending its hours, but cutting its stylists’ shifts. Only about half of the salon’s nine stylists will be working at one time. “We’ll have a half team in the morning and a half team at night and then we can maintain distance between every other station,” Cahen told 8News.

Kaci Minnick owns Studio Copal, a smaller salon in Carytown. She is the only hair stylist there and plans on reopening May 19, taking on just one client at time. Usually, she would book more than one client at once. “No one else will be in here other than the service provider, as of right now, it’s me, and my client or my guest,” Minnick said.

However, because she is cutting back on the number of clients, Minnick made the tough decision to raise some prices. “When that cuts your clientele in half, and I don’t know what the foreseeable future in that is, you can’t sustain your business that way,” said Minnick.

Studio Copal also provides skincare services, like facials, but Minnick and her business partner are waiting until ‘phase two’ to offer those services again. Minnick also plans to take precautions like constant sanitization, wearing a face mask and face shield and taking the temperature of each client.

You are advised to check with your specific salon ahead of time to see the steps they are taking and to make appointments.

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