Updated: July 16, 2021
As COVID-19 cases continue across Canada, some provinces are taking matters into their own hands by enforcing stricter rules and more safety measures in select regions.
Unfortunately for most salon owners, this means personal care services including hair salons, nail salons and barbershops are being ordered to temporarily shut down again in some provinces and regions. But luckily for some, restrictions are easing up in certain provinces that are seeing a drop in COVID cases. Here’s the rundown:
*New* Ontario will be entering Step three of its reopening plan ahead of schedule—on Friday, July 16th which means starting at 12:01 a.m., personal care services will no longer have capacity limits as long as customers can properly physically distance.
Most of Ontario (except for Waterloo Region) entered Step two of the province’s reopening plan on Wednesday June 30th at 12:01 a.m., meaning that personal care services (where face coverings can be worn at all times) such as hair salons, barbershops and nail salons were finally allowed to open (with restrictions). Waterloo Region will move into Step three on July 16th with the rest of the province.
The province’s guidelines for workplace health and safety for personal care services include:
- Screen customers and staff regularly for health issues
- Encourage workers to monitor their own symptoms and ensure workers with symptoms self-isolate
- Update your business’s voicemail, email, social media and website, and create a visible sign for your door to inform customers of changes to the business operations
- Follow all municipal and local public health warnings, directions and recommendations related to COVID-19
- Install physical distancing markers throughout the reception area and other areas depending on the size of the facility, including the entrance area outside the premises if appropriate, to ensure customers maintain a physical distance of 2 metres
- Limit the number of workers working in one space so that they can distance themselves from each other by staggering shifts and break times, practicing physical distancing during breaks and where possible, have their workstations or chairs positioned to maintain the physical distance
- Consider installing transparent barriers where physical distancing is not an option (between chairs or workstations or at salon tables)
- Clean and disinfect/sanitize equipment such as scissors, hair clippers, nail files, and other equipment between customers/workers
- Ensure all hand-washing facilities are available and in good working order
- Encourage the wearing of face coverings or masks when indoors
- Consider only taking customers by appointment and have customers book online and by phone only, restricting walk-ins
- Remove chairs from the waiting area to make sure people do not sit close together or wait in groups
Click here for more information regarding Ontario’s Workplace Safety & Prevention Services guidance on health and safety for the personal care services sector during COVID-19.
*New* Quebec has entered the Level 1-Vigilance (green zone) which is the least restrictive/lowest alert level of the province’s colour-coded system. Hair salons, barbershops and nail salons remain open.
The province’s guidelines for workplace health and safety for the personal care sector (hair salons, barbershops, nail salons) include:
- Workers are informed that in case of symptoms associated with the disease, they must not report to work
- Whenever possible, a minimum of 2 metres of distancing between people must be maintained at work, from arrival to departure (this distance must also be maintained during breaks and lunch hour)
- When there are several workstations in the same area, increasing the space between workstations (e.g. hairdressing chairs, sinks, reception) or elimination of one out of two workstations could allow this distance to be maintained
- Ensure efficient operation and maintenance of the ventilation systems, according to the regulatory requirements for the type of facility and the tasks performed
- Remove non-essential objects (magazines, newspapers and knickknacks) from the common areas
- Do not offer the customers coffee and refreshments
- Clean the sanitary facilities at least every shift and disinfect them daily
Click here for more information regarding Quebec’s guidance for personal care and esthetic services.
Hair salons, barbershops and nail salons have been opened since May 2020.
In Step 3 of BC’s “Restart” plan, which begins on July 1st, employers are no longer required to maintain a COVID-19 Safety Plan, and can instead transition to communicable disease prevention—which can be found here.
As of June 1st, personal wellness services will be allowed to open by appointment only.
The province’s guidance for personal services (hair salons, barbershops) include:
- Encourage and facilitate staff and clients stay up to date with developments related to COVID-19
- Encourage clients to wear masks
- Post signs that instruct those who are required to isolate to not enter
- Consider implementing active screening of clients and staff for symptoms of fever, sore throat, cough, runny nose of difficulty breathing
- Where waiting areas are not large enough to enable 2 metres of distancing, ask clients to wait outside or in vehicles and text or call clients when a chair or station is ready for them
- Remove non-essential high-touch items like magazines and toys
- Use contactless payment and avoid cash payments, where possible
- Provide hand sanitizer with at least 60 per cent alcohol content for client and worker use as they enter and exit
- Arrange workstations to maintain 2 metres of distancing between client service areas, unless separated by physical barriers
- Avoid sharing products or tools between workstations
- Use a clean towel instead of a neck brush to remove hair
- Clients should book an appointment online or by phone and avoid walk-in service
- Workers at hair salons and barbershops should wear procedural/surgical masks while working directly with clients, and consider wearing eye protection and aprons
- Workers at hair salons and barbershops should wash or sanitize hands before starting work, before and after each client, and after any other activity
Click here for more information regarding Alberta’s guidance for personal services.
Hair salons and barbershops have been opened (with some restrictions) since May 2020. With 70 per cent of Saskatchewan adults being partially vaccinated, the province is set to head into “Step 2” of their reopening plan on June 20th, where capacity restrictions are lifted for personal care services but an occupancy level must be maintained that allows customers to maintain two metres of physical distance.
The province’s guidelines for personal service facilities include:
- Certain personal service facilities may need to be altered or postponed to maintain two metres of physical distancing between clients. However, some employees will not be able to maintain this separation during the provision of service. Therefore, measures such as correct personal protective equipment (PPE) and self-monitoring shall be applied
- Clients should attend appointments alone and not bring along friends or children
- Clients should arrive no more than five minutes before the expected appointments, and any waiting area should be set up so clients are at least two metres apart. Remove unnecessary communal items, such as candy, magazines and complimentary phone chargers. Waiting chairs must be cleaned and disinfected after each client
- In order to accommodate physical distancing, appointment times may need to be staggered
- Beverages (coffee, tea, water) must not be offered at this time
- Handwashing stations and/or approved hand sanitizers should be available, and clients should be encouraged to use them upon entering and exiting
- Staffrooms and break rooms should be arranged to follow physical distancing practices
- Retail space should be modified to implement physical distancing requirements
Click here for more information regarding Saskatchewan’s guidelines for personal service facilities.
Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons and other personal care service businesses are allowed to open their doors on Saturday, June 26th at 50 per cent capacity and by appointment only.
The province’s workplace guidance for business owners include:
- Develop a plan for various scenarios for workers in and out of the workplace, such as what to do if staff become ill while at work
- Look at how services could be provided in different ways, such as on-site, other locations, remotely or virtually
- Installing signage to remind people to maintain a physical distance of two metres/six feet
- Ensuring access to washrooms where people can wash their hands with soap and water
- Consider changing hours of operation or job rotation/shifts (in the case of work camps, this could include keeping workers for longer and aligning changeovers so that workers aren’t coming on and off site frequently)
- Space out shifts to ensure adequate cleaning/disinfection can occur
- Encouraging off-hour shifts for workers who require public transportation to decrease exposure risk during busy rush hour times
- Ensure regular work groups continue to work together to minimize the number of contacts for each worker
- Ensure regular work groups are well-documented to ensure contacts can be quickly identified in case a worker tests positive for COVID-19
- Maintain a single point of entry, and ensure entry into the facility or place of business, including lines, are regulated to prevent congestion
- Post external signs indicating COVID-19 physical distancing protocols, along with floor markings, where service is provided or lines form
Click here for Manitoba’s workplace guidance for business owners.
Click here for a health and safety checklist for Manitoba nail salons during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hair salons, barbershops and other personal service businesses are now open.
- Personal services businesses (hair salons, barbershops, spas, nail salons, etc.) can operate fully (appointments and walk-in service), including all services and following their sector-specific plan and the Health Protection Act Order.
Click here for Nova Scotia’s COVID-19 protocols for workplaces.
Hair salons and barbershops are open throughout the province. Health Minister Dorothy Shephard says all restrictions could be lifted by August 2nd in New Brunswick, if 75 per cent of the eligible population have been fully vaccinated by then. The province has a three-phase plan in place beginning on June 7th, with phase 2 expected to commence on July 1st (depending on how many people have had their second vaccine dose) where businesses including salons will be allowed to operate at full capacity if they maintain a contact list of patrons.
The province’s health measures for businesses and service providers include:
- Signage must be posted on proper hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene, and physical distancing throughout your facility and outdoor settings as applicable
- You should advise any staff and patrons who are either symptomatic, and/or have been advised by Public Health to call TeleCare 8-1-1 to report their symptoms, self-isolate, remain home and not enter the premises. You should also actively pre-screen staff before the beginning of each shift by using the Screening Questionnaire for COVID-19
- Patrons and staff must not be permitted to congregate in groups. Patrons must always maintain a minimum of two metres between themselves and others, with the exception of members of the same household or “bubble”
- Ensure that all common areas are cleaned and disinfected twice daily, or more often as required. As an example, items such as countertops, chairs (including below the front of the seat), rental/shared equipment, cashier equipment, light switches, public washrooms, door knobs, and furniture will need to be disinfected more frequently throughout the day
- Use of electronic payment devices are preferred when possible. However, if you must handle money, always ensure regular handwashing and have minimum 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer readily available
Click here for more information regarding New Brunswick’s measures for businesses and service providers.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Hair salons and other personal care services are open.
The province’s guidance for personal services (hair salons, barbershops, nail salons) include:
- Post signage reminding clients and staff to: stay two metres apart from others, leave the premises and return home if they are symptomatic and practice proper hygiene (wash hands, cover coughs and sneezes)
- Clients should be screened prior to sitting for appointments by asking if they are symptomatic. No services should be performed on symptomatic clients
- All staff and clients are expected to maintain physical distancing (at least 2 meters apart)
- Walk-ins should not be accepted. In order to accommodate physical distancing, appointment times may need to be staggered. When booking appointments, clients should be reminded to reschedule if they become sick or self-isolating
- Alternative solutions to waiting areas should be considered, such as asking people to wait in vehicles and text/call when staff are ready. The waiting area should be set up for clients who do not have a vehicle, to ensure they are at least two metres apart
- Where possible, inquiries and consultations without services should be conducted virtually or by telephone
- Clients should attend appointments alone and not bring along friends or children, unless the client requires assistance. Group events should not be offered
- Clients should wear non-medical masks in accordance with the Special Measures Order. These should be provided for clients who have not brought their own
- Essential shared facilities, such as telephones, door knobs, light switches, computers, washrooms and laundry rooms, should receive increased cleaning and disinfection
- Remove communal items such as snacks, magazines, coffee pots and water dispensers, business cards and samples and testers
- Food and beverages should not be offered at this time
Click here for more information regarding Newfoundland and Labrador’s guidance for personal services.
Hair salons and barbershops are open but with some guidelines and restrictions.
Click here for NWT’s guidance for businesses.
Nunavut’s guidelines for personal service providers include:
- Stay home when sick
- Keep a two metre/six feet distances from others, when possible
- Wash your hands often and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands
- Wear a face mask or covering when you are in an enclosed, public setting
- Have a flexible sick policy so staff do not come to work sick
- Maintain logs for customer and staff contact information, which can be used to assist public health with contact tracing if required
- Do not allow clients to bring guests to the appointment, including children
- Provide visible cues such as tape, stickers or safety cones every two metres/six feet for customers lining up when waiting outside.
- Place markers or circles indoors so the clients know where to stand when interacting with staff.
- Walk-in clients must call from outside the business or in their cars before they can enter
- Use tap features at checkout instead of cash, where possible
- Screen clients over the phone prior to booking an appointment
- Offer to reschedule appointments for clients when they are sick
- Cloth masks and face covers should be available for customers and staff upon request
- Provide disposable masks for clients who have not brought their own
- Educate employees on proper hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
- Cleaning, disinfecting or sterilization of items should continue, including tools, equipment, shampoo bowls
Click here for more information regarding Nunavut’s guidelines for personal service providers.
Prince Edward Island
Post circuit breaker measures are still in place until further notice. The province also just announced their reopening plan which begins on June 6th.
Prince Edward Island’s guidance for personal services include:
- Social distancing of two metres (six feet) of clients and employees; and limiting the number people within the workplace at any one time
- Install physical barriers when physical distancing cannot always be maintained
- Non-medical masks, gloves, aprons, etc. to be used when three (3) protocols listed above are not enough to control risk to employees and/or clients
- Walk-ins, all appointments are permitted with a robust Operational Plan to ensure that all Public Health Measures are followed
- Stagger appointments to ensure physical distancing is maintained and to allow enough time to properly clean and disinfect the work station, instruments, equipment and common touch surfaces between each client
- Extra time should be scheduled between appointments to allow for enhanced cleaning
- An assessment of each client is to be completed on the phone prior to booking an appointment
- Remove magazine racks, booklets, brochures, toys and product sell sheets from client areas
- Consider installing a physical barrier at the reception area between clients and employees
- Alcohol-based hand rub (60%-90%) is to be available at the entry and exit as well as throughout the facility as required
- Complete consultations by phone or Internet as best possible in order to limit direct contact onsite
- Ask client to remove and replace one’s own jacket rather than having an employee assist
- Avoid unnecessary physical contact (i.e. shaking hands)
For now, hair salons, barbershops and nail salons are still allowed to remain open operate on an appointment basis, following the Personal Services Guidance.
Personal care services such as hair salons and barbershops have been opened (with guidelines) since May 2020.
Yukon’s guidelines for personal service establishments include:
- Physical distancing
- Good hygiene practice
- Enhanced environmental cleaning and disinfection
- Staff members or businesses owners must use the self-assessment tool before coming to work
- Phone and screen each patient 24 hours prior to their scheduled visit or at time of booking if appointment will be within 24 hours
- Maintain a single point of entry into your establishment. Entry, including lines and waiting areas, are to be regulated to prevent congestion
- Stagger appointment times to accommodate physical distancing. Alternative solutions to waiting in the establishment should be considered, such as asking people to wait in vehicles and text messaging or calling when appointment time is ready
- Space workstations two metres apart
- Encourage online or telephone sales of retail products for delivery or pickup at scheduled times
- Ensure staff are practicing proper hygiene
- Encourage clients to wash or sanitize hands upon entry to facility
- Remove magazines, books, toys, candy, and any other unnecessary items that may be shared between clients in waiting rooms/areas. Clean and disinfect waiting chairs after each client
- Do not offer onsite snack and beverage service at this time. If needed, beverages may be provided in a disposable cup
- Do not reuse any equipment, instruments and material that cannot be disinfected between clients
- Discard or properly launder towels or any other items contacting a client between each use
- Clean and disinfect workstation and reusable equipment after each client
Yukon’s physical distancing guidelines for businesses include:
- Create an environment where clients can practice safe physical distancing of 2 metres (6 feet)
- Do not shake hands. Greet your clients with a smile or a wave
- Consider accepting debit or credit only to minimize contact from exchanging cash
- Close access to your staff room or communal kitchen area if you cannot clean the space regularly
- If you or any of your staff feel sick – even mildly – stay home
Click here for more information regarding Yukon’s physical distancing guidelines for businesses.
Stay tuned here for any additional updates and changes.