Getting a Haircut: How COVID-19 Made Something Simple So New

The 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) changed the way society does things—even with something as simple as getting a haircut.

Part of the government’s efforts to reduce the spread of the virus, almost all establishments were forced to shut down. This included salons and barbershops. Recently, however, some states have been rolling out reopening efforts of various stages.

Given the evidence that hair salons and barbershops operating without proper precautions or operating too early could contribute to the spread of COVID-19, it makes people wonder about the future of haircuts.

What do men’s haircuts or nail-painting services look like in a post-COVID-19 world?

Masks for Everyone

Everyone will be wearing a mask. While masks aren’t required in some states, they are highly recommended. Most hair salons and barbershops are highly likely to ask their clients to wear a mask the entire time they are in the shop.

The shop’s staff will also wear masks and more (e.g., personal protective equipment [PPEs], gloves, and face shields). Some shops will implement uniform policies so that barbers and hairstylists need not wear their street clothes in the shop, and they can easily launder their clothes at night. Doing so reduces the likelihood of transmission of the disease.

No More Walk-ins or Waiting Areas

Sidewalks or parking lots will be the new waiting benches for salons and barbershops. Any form on the in-shop waiting area might be eliminated to prevent a group of customers from huddling in a singular space.

Many shops are also switching over to an appointment-only system. Customers cannot walk in unless they have an appointment. Should they show up early, they’ll have to wait outside. For shops that already practice the appointment system, this will be easy. Shops that do not, however, might find it difficult to adjust.

If your local shop doesn’t make appointments, call them once they reopen and ask them about their walk-in/appointment system.

Sanitization Is Key


Barbers and hairstylists already sanitize their tools with disinfectant, but today, sanitation will extend beyond a simple spritz of disinfectant. Every surface of the shop has to be wiped clean throughout the day. In some cases, the shop can take a break from their services to thoroughly sanitize the shop.

Cashless transactions are also highly encouraged so that there is less physical contact between the customer and their stylist or barber.

Longer Appointments and Longer Hours

Some states have offered shop capacity guidelines that resulted in using only fewer chairs. As a result, only a few barbers will be working at a time. This poses problems not just for the clients but for the business. To offset the decrease in the number of their appointments, most shops will extend their hours. There might also be a shift changes among the staff to avoid possible cross-contamination.

While some of these changes might sound inconvenient, they are precautions. If you take issue with wearing a mask, setting appointments, or waiting for the shop to finish sanitization, ask yourself: is the risk worth it? Safety is still a priority.

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