Safe experience guarantee - our promise to you
It's no secret that life looks a little bit different now compared to this time last year. We are all learning how to live safely around Covid-19 whilst still trying to maintain a sense of normality. One thing which hasn't changed is that a huge part of how we feel can be attributed to how we look and so our precious salon visits are more important than ever before to keep us feeling strong and ready to take on each day!
Both of the Alexander James teams missed working so much during the lockdown and are so thankful to be back doing what they love - looking after their lovely clients! Part of caring for you and your hair means paying extra special attention to the environment you visit us in.
In early July the UK Government released a set of guidelines - some of which have now become law - for us to follow in order to ensure that we are doing all we can to make it safe for you to visit. This includes requirements such as temperature checks on arrival, all disposable everything (sorry environment!), PPE for all staff and clients, limiting the number of people in the salon at one time and allowing extra time for thorough and correct cleaning of work stations and equipment between appointments.
The lockdown had huge financial implications on the business, as we are sure it did for many many individuals. We all came out of it knowing that the economy would face many struggles whilst this situation continues to throw constant curve balls at us all! Not only did we lose 3 full months of trade, we then had to re-open under a totally different set of circumstances.
We are only able to see approximately 70% of the clients we would usually be able to see within a week. This is due to the extra time we book out after each appointment, as well as no longer booking clients into the development times of other services. This means that we can keep the numbers within the salon to a minimum as well as keeping each visit single contact. The team actually love this aspect, as the experience with their client feels much more personal - their undivided attention can be with you from the second you walk through the door until the moment you leave. The pace of work is much slower and the salon environment is calmer. We must take the positives where we can! Of course, all of the above meant we had to seriously look at our pricing structure to ensure the survival of the business under the new restrictions enforced upon us.
A typical salon day before covid consisted of most appointments being booked into 45 minute slots, back to back. We all know that everyone's hair is so different - long, short, thick, fine etc etc there is no 'one size fits all', yet we stuck to industry standard timings because...well, that was the done thing. This meant that we could charge every client the same price BUT a lot of the time stylists would be battling not to keep you waiting too long if they had a complicated appointment before yours which, on reflection, really wasn't fair!
This option is no longer available to us for a few reasons - we cannot have clients piling up in reception due to social distancing regulations and we need to have at least 10 minutes to sterilise our equipment before it can be used again.
That said, we have tired our best to keep the cost comparable for most of our clients, with prices rising £6-8 on average (unless a 1 hour appointment is needed for your hair) and most colour prices also remain similar now that we have fixed all of the post lockdown roots! If you are blessed with particularly long and/or thick hair then you may see a bit more of an increase due to the extra time your stylist needs to carry out your requirements under the new circumstances. Whilst we appreciate that this can be frustrating, we promise that the only thing you are paying extra for is the guarantee of a safe experience.
We could not be more overwhelmed by the support you have shown us through the most uncertain time of our lives so far. Obviously - we couldn't do it without you. We are constantly working on improving and tweaking the salon to make sure that you are still getting the relaxing experience and top quality service we have always taken pride in. This month we hope to re-introduce hot drinks (yay!) for our colour clients and are looking into magazines in electronic form so that we can once again offer reading material for anyone staying with us for a few hours! We love that little slices of normal are drifting back here and there <3
Thank you so much for being on this journey with us.
Love Alex and the team