The return of underground hairdressers: Mobile barbers put adverts on Gumtree, WhatsApp customers and post business cards amid claims clients are being secretly groomed in homes and salons despite lockdown rules
- Barbers and hairdressers are offering black market cuts, colouring and styling
- Self-employed are advertising their services online, despite the strict guidelines
- Barbers, beauty therapists and hairdressers are offering services via Gumtree
Barbers and hairdressers are offering black market cuts and styling in spite of the lockdown restrictions.
Analysis by MailOnline has revealed self-employed workers are advertising their services online, despite strict guidelines prohibiting them going into people’s homes.
Dozens of barbers, beauty therapists and hairdressers are offering to work in homes, via the online marketplace Gumtree.
In recent days a police crackdown has seen one salon owner threatened with an ‘unlimited fine’ and a barbershop being hit with a £1,000 fine for a ‘blatant disregard of coronavirus regulations’.
Lesley Blair, Chair of the British Association of Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology (BABTAC), told MailOnline that businesses operating outside of Covid laws were ‘doing irreparable damage to their reputations’.
Dozens of barbers, beauty therapists and hairdressers are offering to work in homes, via the online marketplace Gumtree
One barber has allegedly used the track and trace system to contact potential clients
Bodycam footage released by the City of London Police yesterday showed officers raiding The Grooming Lounge Barbers and catching two customers receiving a haircut
What are the rules for salons under lockdown 3.0?
The government brought in a new lockdown at the start of the year.
To reduce social contact, the regulations require some businesses to close and impose restrictions on how some businesses provide goods and services.
The guidance states that personal care facilities such as hair, beauty, tanning and nail salons must close.
Tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, body and skin piercing services must also close.
These services should not be provided in other people’s homes.
All non-essential retailers, hospitality and ‘personal care’ like hairdressers must close if they have not yet done so under the tier system.
People desperate for a haircut have also taken to social media, asking if any mobile hairdressers are working in their area.
Many critics have slammed ‘ignorant and irresponsible’ business owners for going into homes.
But others claim it is ‘no different’ to a plumber or electrician carrying out essential work in a property.
The National Hair and Beauty Federation has issued a warning to all members to follow the law.
Lesley Blair from the BABTAC added: ‘While we wholeheartedly understand the awful plight of our, and many other, industries right now, breaking lockdown rules is not only unlawful but dangerous and irresponsible, especially given the 70% increase in transmission with the new variant.
‘The longer a small minority of people and businesses continue to break rules the further out the lockdown will need to be extended for everyone.
‘Ultimately these businesses are doing irreparable damage to their reputations and are at risk of invalidating their insurance too.’
Bodycam footage released by the City of London Police yesterday showed officers raiding The Grooming Lounge Barbers and catching two customers receiving a haircut from staff on January 9.
The clip, which was shared by the force on social media, shows police enter the barber shop in London and confront members of staff.
The shop’s windows had been covered with old newspapers in an apparent attempt to stop people from seeing they were open.
The force said: ‘The owner was issued with a £1,000 fine. This is a blatant disregard of coronavirus regulations & won’t be tolerated. The message is clear: #StayAtHome.
Barbers are offering to go into homes despite the national lockdown in place
An officer enters the shop and speaks with the hairdressers who have breached the coronavirus laws
People desperate for a haircut have also taken to social media, asking if any mobile hairdressers are working in their area
Some people appear confused about lockdown rules, and others claim getting your hair donw is ‘no different’ to a plumber or electrician carrying out essential work in a property
And a salon owner who defied lockdown rules last year has been threatened with an ‘unlimited fine’.
Sinead Quinn attempted to keep her salon open in the face of national lockdown rules by quoting the Magna Carta – an 800-year-old settlement aimed to make peace between the unpopular king and a group of rebel barons.
Ms Quinn, who owns Quinn Blakey Hairdressers in Oakenshaw, near Bradford, West Yorkshire, initially faced a fine of £4,000 for repeated breaches.
She was subsequently hit with two further £10,000 fines and has now been forced to close her salon and has been summoned to court after a crackdown by council officials.
A mobile barber in Plymouth is also being investigated by the council and police amid reports they have been going into homes.
According to PlymouthLive, a concerned resident received a business card for a mobile barber through his letterbox on Monday evening.
Grace Poston-Miles , who owns Grace Hair and Beauty in Chichester, West Sussex, is posting regular tips for her customers online, alongside videos helping them to look their best through the lockdown. Grace works with Instagram influencers, models and YouTubers
Managing director of the trade body Sharon Brigden told Mail Online: ‘The NHBF advises that all hair and beauty professionals follow the law and do not, under any circumstances, provide services for clients, in the salon, barbershop or in the home, during lockdown.
‘We know that these are very difficult times and we are seeking extra financial support from the government to help businesses struggling now and to aid fast recovery once lockdown is lifted.’
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