HAIR salons will be open for up to 18 hours a day as millions of Brits rush to get haircuts on April 12.
Customers have booked out barbers and salons for the coming months – forcing shops to open their doors for longer in order to fit appointments in and beat the Covid backlog.
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Monday marks the next phase of lockdown easing – meaning Brits can finally go to the pub again, get haircuts, and go shopping.
This week, salons have been putting the final touches on their preparations to welcome customers back.
Brits are set to flock to get their new trims after three months without professional haircuts.
Joanna Hansford, who runs a high-end salon in Mayfair, with her mother Jo, said they will open from 5am to 10.30pm next week in a bid to get through 2,000 clients in April.
The 46-year-old, who offers a full head of highlights for between £285 and £520, said: "We're very excited, it's been a long lockdown and it has been a lot tougher.
"The closure of salons has a huge impact on people not being able to look after themselves, especially when you're looking in the mirror a lot more than usual. The reopening will make a big difference."
Leslie Cavendish, the hairdresser to the Beatles and author of The Cutting Edge, said: "The reopening of hairdressers will give a confidence boost to the nation. It's so important, you come out of the salon feeling good.
"It is so stimulating to leave your house and get pampered for a couple of hours.
"You need to talk and need to unwind."
Kelly Boad, owner of the Hair & Beauty Gallery in Warwick, will do the first legal professional haircut after the lockdown at midnight on Sunday.
She said: "We've been inundated with bookings and are fully booked for the first three weeks we're open.
"Given that our first booking is the first haircut we're doing in 2021, I thought it would be quite symbolic to do it at midnight as soon as we're allowed, and unsurprisingly one of our customers was super keen to get their hair as soon as they could."
Keith Conniford, chief executive of the Hair and Barber Council, which has 12,000 members, said: "The industry is extending opening times, a lot of them are opening seven days a week, and the staff are being staggered and shifted for social distancing.
"The longest hours I've heard of is opening at 6am, and staying open until 10am. Customers are desperate to get back in.
"I think some salons have had to raise prices, some are keeping it the same to weather it for their customers. I can understand that, they've been closed for so long. They need to be viable."
As shops are allowed to reopen – many are extending their open hours across the UK in order for Brits to get extra shopping time in.
BACK TO BUSINESS
For the first week from April 12, Primark stores will open for two extra hours per day on average – typically an hour earlier and later.
Huge queues are expected though, so Primark is urging shoppers to "keep up the support and spirit" they showed last year when waiting in line.
The retailer will extend opening hours across all 160 England and Wales stores apart from one to spread demand and help customers shop safely.
Brits can have a drink outdoors again – and boozers with 24-hour licences are planning to welcome customers back from midnight on Sunday.
Around 15,000 pubs — 40 per cent of the total in England — will re-open for outside drinking in beer gardens, car parks and even on roads from April 12.
A handful have a 24-hour license – and are gearing up to welcome punters back as soon as the clock strikes 12, as Brits are set to sink 15million pints next week.
Drinkers will have to brave the outdoors on April 12 in order to sip their pints as pubs can only serve punters outdoors.
But they’ll be covered from the elements after ministers tore up rules last month so gazebos and marquees can go up without planning permission.
Town halls have also been ordered to let bars and restaurants spill out onto pavements for a booming al-fresco April from the 12th.
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