MCO 2.0: Barber, salons in Ipoh breathe sigh of relief after nod to reopen

Barber Logasvaran Konasegaran gives his customer a haircut at his shop in Taman Tinggi, Ipoh February 5, 2021.  — Picture by Farhan Najib
Barber Logasvaran Konasegaran gives his customer a haircut at his shop in Taman Tinggi, Ipoh February 5, 2021. — Picture by Farhan Najib

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IPOH, Feb 5 — Barbers and hairdressers in Ipoh resumed operations today as the government allowed these businesses to reopen following the extension of the movement control order dubbed MCO 2.0 for another two weeks.

Checks by Malay Mail revealed that most barber shops and salons were strictly following the standard operating procedures (SOP) under the current MCO guidelines. 

Barbers and hairdressers are fully equipped with face shields, masks, personal protective equipment, hand sanitizer and also record customers’ temperature and other details. 

Logasvaran Konasegaran, 38, who owns a barber shop in Taman Tinggi here, said that he will only allow two people in the premises at any one time in order to make sure social distancing is adhered to at all times.

“The government has allowed our business to resume and it's our responsibility to make sure we do our best to avoid Covid-19 cases from spreading further,” he said. 

Logasvaran, who has been in the business for eight years, said that he had lost about 70 per cent of business when the government reintroduced the MCO last month. 

“The reintroduction of MCO hit us hard. It was the beginning of the year some more and we have a lot of expenses to cover including payment of rental and utilities,” he added.

He also said he received a lot of calls from his regular customers for appointments after news of reopening yesterday. 

Hairdresser C. Nageswaran gives his customer a haircut at the Triple Hair Studio in Ipoh February 5, 2021.  — Picture by Farhan Najib
Hairdresser C. Nageswaran gives his customer a haircut at the Triple Hair Studio in Ipoh February 5, 2021. — Picture by Farhan Najib

Hairdresser C. Nageswaran 25, who runs Triple Hair Studio with his two partners at Jalan Sultan Yussuf here said that it was a big relief for them as they were worried business would not be allowed to resume when the MCO was extended. 

“We thank the government for allowing us to resume our business. We have a lot of bills to pay,” he said.

He also said that they are only providing haircut service at the moment as per the SOP.

“It’s a bit difficult for us as we are unisex salon. However, we will follow the SOP set by the authorities. It’s for our own safety as well as for the customers,” he added.

Nageswaran also hopes that his customers will be patient as they’ve decided to only allow five customers at any one time into the premises. 

Meanwhile, a 40-year-old hairstylist who only wanted to be named as Tini, said that business is still slow as only haircuts are allowed at the moment.

“Usually our customers will come for hair colouring, perming and rebonding. So we don’t have many customers for now,” she said.

She also hopes that business will pick up in the next few days as customers look to cut their hair before the Chinese New Year.

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