Personal Services

This playbook provides guidelines for businesses in Ottumwa and Wapello County offering the following kinds of personal services: hair and nail salons, barbershops, spas, massage therapists, waxing studios, pet grooming and related services and more.

Salons: A salon, including any establishment providing the services of cosmetology, electrology, esthetics, nail technology, manicuring, and pedicuring, all as defined in Iowa Code § 157. l, may reopen, but only to the extent that it complies with the
following requirements:
(1)    Capacity limited: The salon must limit the number of customers present to 50% of its maximum legal occupancy capacity.
(2)    Appointment only: The salon must operate on an appointment basis to ensure that the public is not gathering in a waiting area.
(3)    Social distancing: The salon must ensure that all customers are at least six feet apart when performing cosmetology practices.

(4)    Other social distancing, hygiene, and public health measures: The salon shall also implement reasonable measures under the circumstances of each salon to ensure social distancing of employees and customers, increased hygiene practices, and other public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 consistent with guidance issued by the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Barbershop: A barbershop, as defined in Iowa Code§ 158.1, may reopen, but only to the extent that it complies with the following requirements:
(1)    Capacity limited: The barbershop must limit the number of customers present to 50% of its maximum legal occupancy capacity.
(2)    Appointment only: The barbershop must operate on an appointment basis to ensure that the public is not gathering in a waiting area.
(3)    Social distancing: The barbershop must ensure that all customers are at least six feet apart when performing barbering services.
( 4)    Other social distancing, hygiene, and public health measures: The barbershop shall also implement reasonable measures under the circumstances of each barbershop to ensure social distancing of employees and customers, increased hygiene practices, and other public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 consistent with guidance issued by the Iowa Department of Public Health.
Medical spas: A medical spa, as defined in Iowa Admin Code§ 653-13.8(1), may
reopen or remain open to provide medical aesthetic services, but only if the medical spa complies with the requirements for performing outpatient procedures that utilize PPE in section 9, paragraph A, of this Proclamation.
Tanning facilities: A tanning facility, as defined by Iowa Code§ 136D.2(5), may reopen or remain open, but only to the extent that the facility takes reasonable measures under the circumstances of each facility to ensure social distancing of employees and patrons, increased hygiene practices, and other public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission ofCOVID-19 consistent with Guidance issued by the Iowa Department of Public Health.
Massage therapy establishments: An establishment where an individual is practicing massage therapy as defined by Iowa Code § 152C. l (3) may reopen, but only to the extent that the establishment takes reasonable measures under the circumstances of each establishment to ensure social distancing of employees and
patrons, increased hygiene practices, and other public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission ofCOVID-19 consistent with Guidance issued by the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Tattoo establishments: A tattoo establishment, as regulated by Iowa Code § 135.37, may reopen, but only to the extent that the establishment takes reasonable measures under the circumstances of each establishment to ensure social distancing of employees and patrons, increased hygiene practices, and other public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 consistent with Guidance issued by the Iowa Department of Public Health.

source: Gov. Reynolds Proclamation, May 26, 2020
 

Current Impacts

According to SMB Group market research, the personal services industry has been among the hardest hit throughout the COVID-19 crisis, demonstrated by 100% of firms reporting a significant negative impact on their business. When all in-person services are forced to cease, these companies have few alternatives except for retail sales of related products.

Providers Report a Significant Negative Outlook

  • >20 Employees Will Be Hardest Hit
  • 2.5% Decline in Cosmetics Industry This Year

Before reopening, these organizations will likely need to re-engineer spaces to accommodate new requirements, including six feet between work stations, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for technicians and reduced capacity to ten people at a time. Recovery will be challenging and slow while operating below original service levels, and a return to previous industry activity could be years off. Due to the extended closures and reduced capacity of the industry, small or newer businesses may close, lay off employees, or reduce employees to zero-hour contractors with no benefits.

Future Trends

Changing Workforce Needs

  • Personal services businesses will need to redesign their office spaces to reduce high-touch items (such as testers or magazines) and install protective screens between technicians and clients when possible.

Increased PPE Needs

  • Personal services technicians will need quality PPE, including, at minimum, masks and gloves when working in direct contact with clients.

Disruption in Supplies and Delivery

  • Due to ongoing supply chain interruption and delivery delays, certain products may be slow to be restocked. Additionally, maintaining a safe stock of PPE for all technicians will be vital.

Increase in Zero-hours

  • Due to reduced business capacity, contracted personal service technicians may be forced to shift to zero-hour contracts where work is not guaranteed and there are no employee benefits.

Recommended Practices

Health & Sanitation

  • Conduct a health screening with all employees before their shifts in accordance with the most up to date recommendations from your local public health department.
  • Encourage employees to wear face masks and employ any other PPE in accordance with the most up to date recommendations from your local public health department.
  • PPE products, such as gloves, are single use and must be changed after each client.
  • Wash hands with soap and water as well as any other body part that came into contact with the customer (i.e., forearms or elbows for massage therapists) after each appointment.
  • Frequently disinfect all hard, non-porous surfaces including the reception counter, phones, computers, door handles, etc.
  • Wipe down all soft surfaces (couches, chairs) with water and a clean towel.
  • Thoroughly clean the product area, including all shelving or display cases. Add signage to this area to let clients know it is cleaned and disinfected daily.
  • Regularly clean air ducts and filters to improve air quality.
  • Provide hand sanitizer for clients, if not already available. Consider installing touchless water faucets and soap dispensers.
  • Consider requiring customers to wear their own mask while receiving services.

Process & Space Modifications

  • Maintain six feet of distance in the reception area and at each work station.
  • Allow no more than ten people in a business at any time, staff included.
  • Consider adding acrylic shields between technician and client when possible.
  • Discard any open "test" product and discontinue this practice.
  • Consider electronic payment such as Venmo, Zelle, etc. to reduce contact.
  • Remove magazines, books, toys, etc. from reception and waiting areas.

Communication

  • Add signage to service areas to let clients know it is cleaned and disinfected daily.
  • Encourage clients to wait in their cars until their appointment start time to reduce waiting area congestion and allow time to properly sanitize between clients.
  • Encourage clients to wear masks when possible, especially for hair and nail services.
  • Develop a client communication plan should you become aware of a COVID-positive visitor in the past 14 days

Additional Resources