How Alabama salon owners are coping with little to no business due to the coronavirus pandemic

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JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ala. (WIAT) — Through at least April 17, all non-essential businesses have been mandated to close across Alabama.

In Jefferson County, most non-essential businesses have already been closed for over a week.

Business owners say they are doing the best they can to survive with closed doors during a global pandemic. For many, their main source of income is now non-existent.

Sonia Patel owns Sonia’s Threading and Spa in Hoover. Her shop has been closed for nearly three weeks.

“It’s very hard because I still have to do the payroll. I have employees and helpers. The rent, all the bills are still there. So it’s hard to survive,” Patel said.

Locally owned salons across the state are feeling the same frustrations. Caroline Hood is one of the owners at Oak Street Hair Group. She said now her focus is on not getting into too much debt.

“I think right now we’re looking at what our best options are to not go too far in debt to keep everything floating,” Hood said.

Hood is trying to take care of her employees as best she can, while making no money.

“We are reaching out letting them know, we will pay healthcare. Looking at all sorts of options to keep everything going as much as we can.”

Not knowing when businesses will be able to reopen, owners like Patel and Hood are trying to focus on staying positive. Patel said if the closures last months, she’ll start to worry.

“So far, for a month or two, we can survive,” she said. “But if it’s going to stay like this, then it’s going to be hard.”

Like many small businesses across the country, Sonia’s Threading and Spa is selling gift cards online. They’re also offering at-home hair dye kits with step by step instructions. Small business owners understand that not everyone can afford to support them financially.

Customers and clients can show their appreciation by following local businesses’ social media pages or leaving a review for the businesses they frequent.


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