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Coronavirus Pandemic

Fighting coronavirus: Dubai-based salon owner puts leisure aside to keep customers safe

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Dubai Filed on September 1, 2020 | Last updated on September 1, 2020 at 06.25 am
Fighting, coronavirus, Dubai-based, salon owner, leisure, customers safe

(Photo by Juidin Bernarrd/Khaleej Times)

Hairstylists and other staff also have to wear PPE, with their heads covered.

Keep your mask up, wash your hands and don't stand too close to others - sounds simple, doesn't it? And yet, the irresponsible actions of a few have led to a surge in daily Covid-19 cases in the UAE. This two-week campaign reminds you how simple the safety rules are and how most residents have consciously adopted the new normal. In this series, Khaleej Times will feature responsible residents who have changed their lifestyles to keep their communities safe. If they can do it, so can you.

The beauty and grooming industry may have been badly hit by the pandemic - but Julie George was determined to get back up and bring her salons back in business. With her strong commitment to her customers and staff, she has not stepped outside for leisure for five months now.

George, a longtime Dubai resident and founder of Glitz Beauty Centre, said her business is now swiftly recovering, thanks to the stringent sanitation protocols, which sometimes came at a cost of personal sacrifices.

"I have two branches in Barsha, Dubai. I started this business in 2004. I've always had a passion for the beauty industry. Even when I was in India, I used to run my own spa and beauty centre."

Now that her salons are open, they make sure that every safety rule is followed.

"From the moment a client enters the salon until they leave, there is a constant on-going process of sterilisation," said George.

Her staff members, who stay at a common accommodation, have also refrained from going out, except for work and other necessary outings. At the salon, every time a chair is used by a customer, it is thoroughly sterilised. There are constant temperature checks, and sanitisation tunnels have been installed.

Hairstylists and other staff also have to wear PPE, with their heads covered.

"Everyone keeps a two-metre distance between each other. My clients can come to the salon only if they have an appointment," George added. After providing a service, the salon's staff would take hot water baths. "Initially, business was slow, but I think it picked up because of our stringent sterilisation protocol."

George believes that to ensure the safety of the community, individuals need to make lifestyle changes. "I avoid malls and other crowded areas. I have not been to the mall in the past five months. Except for my daughter's house, I do not go anywhere.

"It's a commitment I make to my staff; because if I get sick so will my girls and I do not want that," she said.

One of her clients had undergone a heart surgery. "I ask her, aren't you scared to be stepping out? She replied: 'The sterilisation process in the salon gives me the confidence to come here'. That gives me confidence." 


Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for 10 years. She has a keen interest in writing about issues that plague the common person, and will never turn down a human interest story. She completed her Bachelor in Arts in Journalism, Economics, and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves travelling, and Audible is her favourite mobile application. Tweet at her @wordjunkie88

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