FONTANELLE — Justi Zimmerline says it was with mixed emotions that she and her co-workers Hannah Antisdel, Melissa Menefee and Jenna Christensen reopened their hair salon, the Best Little Hair House, last weekend.
Those in the cosmetology business have arguably hit the hardest. They have been sidelined since the COVID-19 pandemic started. Zimmerline said that it is a two sided situation, that the time away from the salon has allowed her to have free time she might not have otherwise had, though it’s also very frustrating.
She has been using the time she has had to be with family and focus on the little things of life. She has also been connecting with customers through phone calls or greeting cards during this time.
Once the Hair House employees knew that Governor Kim Reynolds would soon be announcing salons would open they went to work devising a plan to reopen.
“I made a decision for the salon that if we opened May 1 we were going to only have one [stylist] in the salon at a time to not overlap and have so much congregation at one time. Now that it has gone on almost two months that it has been closed we talked about that, but we’re so overwhelmed that we’re going to try to all work at the same time,” Zimmerline said.
Zimmerline said having all three stylists and Christensen doing massages all at the same time is possible because of their salon’s layout. All of their work stations are at least six feet apart.
The salon will be limiting the number of people who come in and customers are asked to wait to be texted or waved in before they can come in for their appointment due to increased disinfecting right now. Customers are strongly encouraged to wear a mask when visiting the salon.
Zimmerline said each stylist in her salon will be handling booking differently. For instance, she began with those who she cancelled at the beginning of the pandemic before proceeding. No walk-ins will be allowed at their salon for now.
“It’s going to be a learning curve. We’re going to be really overwhelmed the first week,” Zimmerline said. “[After those I had cancelled when this started] I went with the ones that are always re-booking or those who were on the books. As I’ve gotten others in I’ve got a list and have gone from there.”
Zimmerline said she’s always been busy so she’s excited to see her customers again.
“It’s also helped me realize that there’s a lot more than making money like spending time with my family and doing things with my kids that I’ve never gotten to do,” Zimmerline said. “It’s been a learning lesson that we all need to slow down and realize what’s important too.”