BUFFALO, N.Y. — More personal care services will be included in Phase 3 of New York's reopening plan. Like many other industries that have already been given the green light to reopen, there are several mandates in place.
The latest guidelines for Phase 3 apply to non-hair-related personal care businesses and services, including tattoo and piercing facilities, appearance enhancement practitioners, massage therapy, spas, cosmetology, nail specialty, UV and non-UV tanning, or waxing.
The owner of Dr. Igors Creations in Newfane, Cyle Hoffman, told 2 On Your Side that he and his wife had just opened their shop shortly before they had to close due to COVID-19.
Still, they're eager to get back and serve customers.
"I'm gonna be really excited to open my doors. I'm gonna be offering a 50 percent discount on all procedures, tattoos and piercings," he said.
Hoffman added instead of taking walk-ins, he'll be taking appointments only and requesting that the appointments be scheduled two weeks in advance.
The co-owner of Route 16 Nail Bar in Machias, Jenna Hehl, told 2 On Your Side they're already trained to take sanitation seriously and they're prepared for the additional protocols in phase three.
"Now we're just putting in the shields between us, offering disposable masks. When you walk in the door, we'll open the door. We will wash your hands. We'll sanitize," Hehl said.
Hehl added, "It's just really being able to pay attention to what you're doing, disposing properly and sanitizing properly."
Restrictions from the state include limiting occupancy to no more than 50 percent and keeping a six-foot distance between individuals, except during services.
Customers must also wear face coverings and employees are required to wear a face covering and face shield when providing services to customers, in addition to amped-up sanitary measures.
"Facemask would be absolutely fine. The face shield, I think, would be reflective, but I do think it would be safer to use so I'll have to work a little slower," Hoffman said.
According to the state guidelines, employees must also be tested for COVID-19 every 14 days during phase three. Both of the owners we spoke to raised concerns about that requirement.
However, Hehl said, "It's something we have to do. We'll do it so we can get back to work, be safe and hopefully get back to normal life soon."
Employees at hair salons and barbershops, which were given the okay to open in phase two, also have to be tested for COVID-19 every 14 days, which was met with some opposition from both people who work in those facilities and those who own them.
Phase 3 could begin in Western New York next week, but that announcement has not officially been made at this time.