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'We're looking at 100 degree days' | Some stylists, barbers not in a hurry to work outside

Salons, barbershops hoping state will reverse guidelines to return inside

LODI, Calif. — For Lindsey Wentz, wife and mother of two young boys, cutting hair outside is not her style.

"We're looking at 100 degree days, which puts us at risk as well as our clients," said Wentz.

Wentz co-owns the Mint Salon in Lodi, a business she's owned for nearly two years. She works alongside 12 other stylists.

However, her plans to continue inside the salon were curtailed due to coronavirus restrictions, and she said working outside just doesn't work.

"They say it has to be adjacent to our building. We really don't have enough room for all of our stylists to operate safely six-feet apart outside," said Wentz.

State guidelines also include training on heat illness prevention and symptoms. When using electrical cords, stylists must comply with Cal OSHA's outdoor operation rules and won't be able to offer chemical hair services or shampooing.

Wentz said a giant banner on her window says it all: "Six Weeks Reopened, 13 Stylists, 966 Clients. ZERO Positive Tests." 

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Credit: Kurt Rivera
A sign at Mint Salon

"We're sanitizing everything that gets touched in between every single client," Wentz said. "We are, as always, doing the best that we can and making sure that every tool and instrument is sanitized according to the state board."

Bobby Page, owner of Village Barbershop in Stockton's Lincoln Center, is also not thrilled with outside work. He equates it to camping.

"Just the elements. It's heat," said Page. "You know, I got a lot of seniors. The heat, especially suppressed with the face masks, it can be a little challenging. I fear for my seniors," he said.

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