The current global outbreak of the Coronavirus is threatening the gains many spa businesses have accumulated over the years. Spas are now having to close down. Owners are now grappling with measures of dealing with coronavirus in their business.
WHO (World Health Organization) declared the Coronavirus disease a global pandemic on 11th March 2020. This was an indication that the disease had spread beyond global expectations.
WHO has recommended self-quarantine and social distancing as some of the methods of curbing the rapid spread of the virus.
These measures may not be practical in the spa industry which explains why some of them have opted to close down.
Apart from interacting with clients directly, spa therapists get into close contact with walk-in potential customers.
What can spas owners do to guarantee their clients and employees' safety and health while cushioning their businesses from losses?
First, you need to look out for and stick to the local and national guidelines as released within your region.
Covid-19 isn’t fatal for people who don’t fall within the high-risk category.
Assuming your region hasn’t yet been severely affected by the virus and you’re certain your spa can remain open.
There are various precautions you should take to ensure the business continues operating normally.
According to Denise Fuller, cofounder of the NASN (National Aesthetic Spa Network,) and a certified esthetician, you shouldn’t be afraid.
She says, “Fear and stress decrease your immune system. Just be wise and take precautions.”
Denise advises team leaders and managers to create a checklist and ensure spa employees disinfect the listed items regularly throughout the day.
Personal protective equipment such as single gloves is crucial for the execution of these tasks.
Further, they should use a certified disinfectant each time. Your list should include:
- Items found at the front desk such as pens, phones, computer keyboards, and the credit card machine. Desks and chairs within this area should also be disinfected thoroughly.
- Common shelves, racks, and surfaces
- Door handles and doorknobs. Clean both the outer and inner sides to ensure that clients touch clean surfaces when entering and exiting the premise.
- Bathrooms with special attention to the toilet flush handle
- Massage and esthetic rooms
- Spa equipment such as magnifying lamps, steamers, hot cabinets, the interior part of drying lamps and nail dryers, laundry machines, the refrigerator, garbage bins, and storage baskets
- Hair, nail, and wax stations
- Bottles containing shampoo, skincare products, hairspray, essential oils, body exfoliants, massage creams, and nail polish.
Shampoo bowls should also be cleaned and disinfected thoroughly around the neck after every client.
- The lunchroom and employee lockers
- All seating areas
Some spa owners think they can stick to their regular cleaning practices which isn’t the case.
Every spa facility should heighten their hygiene practices to combat the spread of coronavirus.
According to experts, spa owners should be aggressive with post-care cleaning practices for their clients.
It’s important to thoroughly clean and disinfect all equipment and furniture after use. These thorough measures make extensive cleaning easier.
According to professionals in the salon and spa industry, these facilities should waive cancellation fees.
They should also consider removing penalties charged on customers for missing appointments.
Doing so will encourage any customers who are unwell to stay at home.
By so doing they’ll be protecting themselves, your employees, and other customers from getting sick.
As an entrepreneur, this can make you feel as though the business is making losses financially.
However, the risk, in this case, overrides the gains if you, your employees or other clients contract Covid-19.
Steve Sleeper who’s the Professional Beauty Association executive director says:
“Our top concerns are the health and wellness of the individuals in the industry, their clients, and customers, as well as the potential economic impact on the salons and licensed beauty professionals,” says Sleeper. “Aside from maintaining health as the most integral priority, we want to help ensure that the salon world is minimally impacted economically."
Communication is Crucial
It’s important to let your clients and employees understand the measures your facility is adopting to combat the spread of Coronavirus.
In today’s digital world where nearly all customers use smartphones, sending emails is a good way of reaching them fast.
For instance, you can draft an email for your clients with the subject; Measures “Name of your spa” is taking to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Within the body of the email, you can highlight what your spa is doing to guarantee safety at the spa.
These can include: washing hands with soap and water or the use of sanitizers and thorough cleaning and disinfecting of tools.
Include this info on your website and social media platforms. Different spas are doing things differently.
Take an example of this brand based in California.
They opted to send an email blast to their client with the heading “Actions We Are Taking around Coronavirus Outbreak.”
Here, the brand owners communicated how they had decided to temporarily stop in-store operations and opted for in-office policies instead.
In this case, the brand had allowed its employees to work remotely. It’s important to understand that communication is critical during any crisis.
Some spas are optimistic that Coronavirus won’t affect their businesses.
Still, the rapid spread of Covid-19 resulted in a global scarcity of sanitation products for customers.
To counter the shortage and ensure there are enough wellness products for everyone, different manufacturers are producing them in bulk.
They’re also making them available for wholesalers and consumers in back bar, individual, and exclusive label quantities.
These products include antibacterial hand washing soap, aromatherapy sprays, and hand sanitizers.
A director in one of these manufacturing companies says:
“From the moment the potential impact of this virus was understood, our team knew this needed to be a priority.”
Nikki Ostrower, founder of Nao Wellness situated in New York City is giving clients 45-minutes of remote immune system boosting sessions.
Her focus is to discuss the client’s immune systems and address the growing concerns about Coronavirus.
Nikki is also taking her clients through Remote Reiki options. Reiki is a Japanese relaxation and stress relieving technique.
It also promotes healing. During the immune system advancement sessions, clients are taught how to improve their immune systems.
Further, Nikki helps them identify stress-reducing tools before giving them a healthy food shopping list.
She also tells them where to buy these foods. If you feel healthy and fit to travel, you may want to visit this resort in Mendocino California.
It aims at giving travelers a chance to forget the Coronavirus threat.
This way, they can concentrate on strategies to help combat its spread using the immune system advancement holiday package.
The package that goes for $775 per couple comes with a Boost your immune system tailored to meet individual needs.
Couples also get a three-night stay at the resort, customized creativity, and art class, and cooking class.
They also have the option of attending a nutrition and healthy living class. These classes are critical for developing a practical health-boosting mindset that can help prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Hygiene is Critical
The health and wellness of professionals in the spa industry and their clients is important.
According to WHO and the center for disease control is by boosting hygiene standards within the facility always.
Spas shouldn’t wait for a crisis to heighten their hygiene practices.
Hygiene is one of the reasons why spas are regulated and players in the industry are licensed and inspected regularly.
There’s also a regulatory body in all countries to guarantee the safety and health of all the people within the spa surroundings.
Here are various things spas can do to help combat the spread of Coronavirus.
According to the CDC, you should wash your hands with running water and soap for at least 20 seconds.
This helps combat the spread of germs.
Spa therapists are required to wash their hands before and after serving each client, after using the restroom, and after eating.
There should be a hand sanitizer containing 70% alcohol within the premises.
Therapists can maintain a strong immune system by having enough sleep, taking a lot of vitamin C, and drinking sufficient water.
However, should your employees get sick the WHO and CDC recommends remaining at home.
If your client is sick and can’t attend their appointment you can remove their cancellation fees.
This way, you encourage them to stay at home until they feel better. Always advise sick individuals to seek medical attention.
Avoid Shaking Hands
Discourage hugging and shaking hands with your clients or employees.
By now your customers must be aware of this policy and shouldn’t have a problem with it.
Further, try to keep your hands away from your face.
Place signage at the front office and other parts of your spa reminding your clients and employees to observe high standards of hygiene.
The spa industry has had to fight different virus outbreaks before.
For instance, clients stayed away from spas during the outbreak of Avian Flu and SARS.
Fortunately, the industry always finds strategies to sail through the challenges to get out of it stronger.
It’s no doubt that the spa industry will overcome the Coronavirus pandemic soon.