Covid: Advice for Hairdressers post lockdown

Covid-19 does not know the difference between reusable and single use, but the environment does

As businesses re-open there are understandable concerns about the safety of staff and customers. With this in mind, we have produced this practical guide to inspire confidence and keep single use plastic to a minimum. There is a huge groundswell of opinion in favour of an economic recovery based on a more sustainable future.

There is anxiety and increased pressures on businesses to ensure they are not a source of infection. However, it continues to be important to make choices that also minimise environmental impact.

Current Government advice on the use of PPE

Here are the main points as stated in the government guidance updated on 9th July

  • Where you are already using PPE in your work activity to protect against non-COVID-19 risks, you should continue to do so.

  • In workplaces such as hairdressers and barbers, beauty salons and tattoo and photoshoot studios, it is likely to be difficult to maintain social distancing, as employees need to work in close proximity to their clients, usually for an extended period of time.

  • The person providing a service (such as hairdressers, because of the period of time spent in close proximity to a person’s face, mouth and nose) should therefore wear further protection in addition to any that they might usually wear. This should take the form of a clear visor that covers the face and provides a barrier between the wearer and the client from respiratory droplets caused by sneezing, coughing or speaking. Visors must fit the user and be worn properly. It should cover the forehead, extend below the chin, and wrap around the side of the face.

  • Both disposable and re-usable visors are available. A re-usable visor must be cleaned and sanitised regularly using normal cleaning products. There is no requirement for the client to wear any additional protection such as a mask or face covering when the practitioner is wearing a visor. There is no benefit to either the client or the practitioner of wearing additional PPE to that which they would usually use, beyond the clear visor mentioned above.

  • The most effective methods of preventing the transmission of COVID-19 are still social distancing and regular handwashing. These steps must still be followed as much as possible, even when practitioners are wearing protective equipment.

For further information and guidance please refer to the Government website:

It is important that customers see that cleaning is being done so that they can feel confident to return to a business.

According to Greenpeace1 disposables are no safer than properly cleaned reusables. Single-use disposables can harbour viruses and bacteria. They are subject to whatever pathogens have settled on them throughout manufacture, transport, stock rooms and eventual use.

W e think that this is a good reason to reject single-use plastic.

Face Masks

The wearing of masks on public transport is required now and is mandatory in shops from July 24th. The question is what type of mask to wear. There have been pictures of disposable masks littering the streets and washing up on beaches around the world, polluting the environment. Therefore, reusable masks are really a better option.

Reusable cloth masks are now easily available, if you unable to source locally or by mail then follow the Government’s link to make your own.2

The Future

More than 200 top UK firms and investors are calling on the government to deliver a Covid-19 recovery plan that prioritises the environment.

The Business Secretary, Alok Sharma, is holding a series of economic ‘recovery roundtables’, on which the British Chamber of Commerce is represented. He said, “This will undoubtedly lead to a cleaner, greener, more resilient economy which will create new jobs” 3

Please feel free to contact Dawlish Against Plastic if you have any questions about the topics mentioned or if you would like to become a Surfers Against Sewage Plastic Free Champion.

Visit our website, where this information and all the links can be accessed:

Or visit our Facebook page (DawlishAgainstPlastic), or email:

Compiled also with advice from Surfers Against Sewage and with reference to Plastic Free North Devon.

We are producing a separate leaflet for shops.

Vanessa Ryley - 07791464995

Dave Hutton - 07890515794

On behalf of Dawlish Against Plastic


2 Government advice on making face mask