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Italians Head To Beauty Salons As Restrictions Ease

At the upscale Federico Fashion Style salon in the centre of Rome, owner Federico Lauri and his team wear face masks and gold trimmed visors as they attend to customers in gold seats under large chandeliers.


At the upscale Federico Fashion Style salon in the centre of Rome, owner Federico Lauri and his team wear face masks and gold trimmed visors as they attend to customers in gold seats under large chandeliers.

Their customers are wrapped up in sanitary gowns and wearing face masks.

"The conditions unfortunately,  are what you see.  It is not very easy to work like this," Lauri said.

The Federico Fashion Style Salon, like all the beauty salons in Italy, has been required to implement stringent measures in order to reopen their doors to clients.

Customers get their temperatures measured, they must wear masks and gloves, and leave their purses in plastic bags.

The hair stylists and manicurist are required to wear masks,visors, tie back their hair and use sanitary gowns.

Lauri explains that his customers were desperate to get appointments as soon as he opened because it is part of the Italian culture, women want to look good even it if it is to go to get a coffee with friends.

What Lauri is talking about is known in Italy as "the Bella Figura,' a beautiful figure, the importance of making a good impression by appearing elegant and sophisticated.

Italians are raised to believe you should make a good impression when you got out in public, in the piazza, in the streets.

For that reason, Italians give high priority to their physical appearance and throughout the months of lockdown there were endless news reports of the frustrations of women at home with lengthening grey roots, hairdressers breaking the law to sneak into homes to make women look better and online courses on hair colouring and cutting at home.

Salons say even men have been lining up to get pedicures and haircuts.

When the government of Premier Giuseppe Conte announced that beauty salons would remain closed until June there was a major outcry and the government relented, moving the date up to May 18 but dictating a series of stringent measures.

At the Giada C Salon in Rome, owner Giada Capuano personally sprays the bottom of the shoes of each customer who comes in with germicide.

She makes them leave their name at the desk so that if someone gets the coronavirus she can contact all the other clients.

Her hairstylists and manicurists are decked out in visors, clothes, gowns and hair caps.

However, there is a cost for all this and Giada, who just opened her salon a few years ago, nearly breaks down in tears as she talks about the drop in the number of clients they can serve and the income she is losing.

"I never thought it would come to this. This situation really scares me," she explained.

But her customers are loyal and not bothered by the extra measures.

Benedetta, a client getting her hair coloured, swivelled around in her seat in sanitary gown wearing two masks on her face.

"Let's say that it is definitely changed," she said

"We no longer have the crowd that we are used to seeing at the beauty salon, we are a bit more – let's not say coddled, but more cared for, just as it should be."

 

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