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Coronavirus Leaves Salon Workers, Beauty Freelancers Jobless

Government-mandated closures due to the coronavirus have left nail technicians, hairstylists and makeup artists with nothing on their books.

Photo by Gunnies Gunne for WWD

Beauty salon workers and freelancers are feeling the effects of the coronavirus on their cashflow.

Jobs had already been scarce for hair and makeup artists since March 11, when the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a worldwide pandemic. Last week, nail technicians and aestheticians were still working from salons and making house calls, but that came to a halt this past weekend, when the governors of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania — as well as many authorities in California — ordered barbershops, hair salons, nail salons, hair removal services and tattoo or piercing parlors to temporarily close up shop.

The personal-care mandate, intended to slow the coronavirus’ spread, has left some salon owners with the tough decision of laying off their staff members. In other cases, self-employed beauty professionals are now gig-less, with no time frame for when they might resume taking clients.

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