Jessica Hicks, owner of Deluxe Beauty Therapy on her first day after COVID-19 restrictions shut them down.
Jessica Hicks, owner of Deluxe Beauty Therapy on her first day after COVID-19 restrictions shut them down.

Busy time for locals getting back to beauty salon

LIKE MANY beauty therapists in the country, two months ago Jessica Hicks watched as the prime minister decimated their industry on national television.

The industry was shut down in response to the coronavirus pandemic, and for Ms Hicks, who has run her Deluxe Beauty Therapy business for the past six years, it was a shock.

“It was crazy, and at first they were saying it would be about six months,” she said.

Ms Hicks started the business aged 18, and said while there had been plenty of ups and downs, but nothing like what she had gone through.

However, the short notice of the lifting of the ban meant they had to spring into action just to be ready.

REMEMBER: PM flip-flops on beauty bans

“We weren’t looking at moving, but when this place on Fitzroy Street came up, it was a bigger shop and street frontage we thought we’d come in, expecting to be closed until at least July,” she said.

“Then when we found out it was June 1, we had six days to get it ready.”

Starting from an empty shop, Jess’s partner Robbie, who runs Robbie’s Handyman Service built the four treatment rooms, lunchroom and front area in six days, and the mammoth task wasn’t finished then.

CHECK: How beauty salons have to operate in a COVID-19 world

“We had our first customers come in today,” Ms Hicks said. “And I realised I have some things still at the other shop, and some at home. We haven't’t got everything quite down pat.”

“It’s a relief though, it’s really good. I’m so keen to get back. I don’t think it’s really set in yet,” she said.

Connie Strong, owner Jessica Hicks and Amani Kaur at Deluxe Beauty Therapy after COVID-19 restrictions shut the industry down.
Connie Strong, owner Jessica Hicks and Amani Kaur at Deluxe Beauty Therapy after COVID-19 restrictions shut the industry down.

As a counterpoint, the enforced break was the first extended break she’s had from the business, only taking the two weeks over Christmas for the past six years.

And her customers couldn’t wait to see her back.

“From last week, we were booked out all this week, and it’s pretty busy next week too,” she said.

“At one stage we were fully booked, and we hadn’t even finished the place.”

Ms Hicks said she thought that people had come to realise the importance of beauty therapy, not just for their own physical appearance, but a mental one as well.

“It’s not so much the physical part, but for some it’s just some downtime,” she said. “The clients come in to relax and indulge.”

As part of ongoing COVID-19 rules, each person must sign-in when they come to the business, but the stringent rules of the beauty industry meant not much had changed when it came to their cleanliness.



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