Summer Pedicure Season and Advice for Reopening Salons, an Interview with OPI Educator Shannon Rooney
To continue our series of blogs about the reopening of salons across the globe, we take a look at how the summer pedicure season is being impacted by stricter sanitation efforts to maintain health and wellness. We checked in with OPI Brand Educator extraordinaire Shannon Rooney, with Seriously Nails salon in Scottsdale, Arizona which reopened on May 8th, to share her experiences and insights.
OPI: Hi Shannon, thanks so much for taking the time to check in with us, we’re excited to speak with you. Salons across the nation are beginning to reopen, and we know that pedicure season is fast approaching with it. What effect will this have around services you’re offering at the time of reopening?
SR: I live and work in sunny Arizona, and it is always pedicure season here!!! I am encouraging my clients to explore gel pedicures as a way of reducing chipping in their color and increasing wear time, thus, limiting the time they are in the salon.
OPI: Specifically for pedicures and pedicure bowls, are there increased efforts for sanitation that might be helpful to share with clients to help them feel more comfortable?
SR: Overall, my sanitization and disinfection processes of pedicure chairs and bowls have always remained the same. I use disposable pedicure bags already so this hasn’t changed at all, and all surfaces involved in the pedicure process, including metal implements, are cleaned with EPA approved products. As always, disposable items get thrown out with the pedicure bag too.
OPI: When your salon began to reopen, what means of communication did you use to ensure your clients were always up to date on the latest information?
SR: My main form of communication during the pandemic and prior to opening is with direct text messages, I feel that it is more personal that way. You can also check up on your older clientele in a quick personal way by giving them a call. I also utilized social media platforms including Instagram and Facebook to share some of my new protocols when I reopened.
My new protocols included texting when arriving so we can ensure all sanitation efforts have been completed, accepting of primarily non-cash payments, no cell phone use during our appointment time, no extra persons involved in the appointment (kids, friends, etc.), everyone wearing PPE (masks and hand sanitization are required), and rescheduling of any appointment for anyone at-risk or not feeling well.
OPI: What types of services will you be allowing clients to pre-book if any? Are there any services you aren’t offering after reopening?
SR: There aren’t any services that I have discontinued. I still offer manicures, pedicures, both in regular and gel nail polish. As well as hard gel enhancements, OPI Powder Perfection manicures, and nail art, of course!
OPI: We love a good Powder Perfection mani! What new practices will you have in place for clients around booking? (i.e. extra allotted time for increased sanitation, booked services only -- no walk-ins, extra hours, or special hours?)
SR: So for now, all clients must be booked in as I will not be taking walk-ins. Each service time has had an automatic 15 extra minutes booked into it so that I can clean hard surfaces utilizing the additional CDC protocols.
OPI: What about sanitation efforts? What are some of the newer and increased sanitation efforts that are in place now that the salon has reopened?
SR: Since reopening, I am trying to limit the number of things that people can touch in the salon. For example, no cell phones or electronic use while having your service done limits the number of possible cross-contamination points. (Pedicures are exempt from this as I am not touching their hands.) I have also taken any lotions, testers, etc. off my desk so that clients cannot readily access them. We have installed hangers for storage of ladies' purses, and once their service starts they are asked to refrain from going into it unless it’s an emergency.
Also, our salon owner has installed plexiglass dividers between the hair stations. I already have one that keeps me separate from the retail area and there is already 10 feet between myself and the stylists, so there is ample room for social distancing. We also are only allowing 1 person per stylist at a time. There are no double bookings of hair clients, and there is a limit of 2 retail customers at a time in the retail area.
OPI: What do you feel is important to share with clients about these increased efforts? Can clients ask questions about the new procedures?
SR: I have always talked to my clients about my sanitizing and disinfecting protocols when they first become a client. They are shown the disposable products and I explain that I use EPA approved products to disinfect my metal implements. I also use disposable table towels to eliminate the possibility of contamination from client to client.
OPI: It sounds like you are doing an amazing job of maintaining your client's well-being. What are you most excited about when it comes to the reopening of the salon and being able to see clients again?
SR: Really just being able to see my clients in person, and to be able to look them in the eyes! We are more than just their manicurists, we are counselors, comedians, recipe exchangers, we connect clients with each other, and we encourage our nail community. This is much easier to do in person!
OPI: We’ve really enjoyed checking in with you Shannon, and we can’t wait to check back in soon to see how things are going. Is there anything else you’d like to share at this time about the reopening of salons?
SR: A new twist for me, since I am in a state that is connected to states that are still closed, is that I am getting a lot of calls from people who live in other states to have services performed. I felt nervous about this to start so I have extra precautions for these folks. They must abide by all the other protocols as well as answering questions about their health, and they must also allow me to take their temperature before coming into the salon.
You can follow Shannon on Instagram @seriouslynails and check out the Seriously Nails Salon at 7080 E. 5th Ave Scottsdale, AZ if you happen to be local.
Stay tuned for more inside tips and advice from nail pros as more salons begin to reopen.
We’re here for you during this time, be sure to check out our Post-COVID-19 Reopening Guide and our in-depth Sanitation Guidelines for Nail Professionals blogs below.