Coronavirus: Nail bars and tattoo salons reopen as England lockdown eases

Clare Gleadell cleans and disinfects surfaces at Beautique beauty salon in Loughborough as they prepare to reopen on Monday Image copyright Joe Giddens/PA Media

Beauty salons, spas, tattoo parlours and nail bars are welcoming back their first clients for almost four months, as lockdown restrictions ease further in England.

But some treatments, such as eyebrow threading, are still banned, leaving many salons unable to reopen.

In Scotland indoor shopping centres are allowed to reopen.

In Wales, pubs, bars and restaurants can start serving customers outdoors, while hairdressers can also reopen.

Businesses will be required to follow guidelines to reduce the spread of coronavirus – and treatments which involve work directly in front of the face will not be available.

Government guidance states that services including face waxing, eyebrow threading, eyelash treatments, make-up applications and facials should not be provided because of the greater risk of Covid-19 transmission.

Beard trims have been allowed since barbers opened last weekend – but should be limited to simple tidy-ups or thinning which can be carried out from the side or by circling the client to avoid the highest risk zone in front of the face, the British Beauty Council has said.

Vanita Parti, founder and chief executive of the Blink Brow Bar walk-in beauty bar chain, which has 11 shops in London and specialises in eyebrow treatments, said her salons would not be able to reopen under the guidelines.

“I’m furious,” she told the BBC last week. “This will kill so many businesses. I wish they’d consulted us.”

Massage studios, tanning salons, physical therapy businesses and piercing services will also be allowed to reopen their doors in England from Monday.

Business Secretary Alok Sharma said: “Enabling these often small, independent businesses to reopen is yet another step in our plan to kickstart the economy to support jobs and incomes across the country.”

Image copyright Martin Rickett/PA Media
Image caption Some nail bars have installed plastic screens to reduce the spread of coronavirus

Meanwhile, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said this week would see “the most substantial easing of lockdown so far” for her country.

Hospitals are reopening to visitors and children and young people are now allowed to play contact sports outdoors.

From Wednesday, hairdressers and barbers will be able to reopen and indoor pubs, cafes and restaurants can return to business.

In Wales, hospitality businesses can open for outdoor service. Only half of venues are predicted to do so, with major chains, including Wetherspoons and Brains, waiting until customers are allowed indoors from 3 August.

The National Trust is also reopening some of its historic houses, with visitors allowed at seven properties in England and Northern Ireland in a test run of new rules intended to keep the public and staff as safe as possible.

“We’re really grateful to our members and supporters for sticking with us during lockdown,” said Tarnya Cooper from the National Trust, who spoke to BBC’s Breakfast from Petworth House. “This is the first time in 16 weeks we’ve been able to contemplate reopening our houses.”

She said about one million visitors had already pre-booked trips to National Trust’s parks and gardens since they opened in early June.

A further 650 coronavirus cases were reported across the UK on Sunday, according to the Department of Health. That is an increase on the 516 cases reported on the same day a week earlier – but hugely down on the peak in April when there were about 5,000 new cases a day.

The total number of people who have died with Covid-19 in the UK is now 44,819, a rise of 21 on the previous day – although figures tend to be lower at weekends because of reporting delays.