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Big demand for haircuts on first day of reopening

Acqua owner Pina Marfisi said she is not taking appointments from people living in the GTA and Hamilton, which are areas still in Phase 1 of the reopening of the economy
20200612 Acqua KA
Acqua hair salon owner Pina Marfisi is welcoming clients back to her business after more than two month. Kenneth Armstrong/GuelphToday

Hairstylists in Guelph met with some challenging pandemic hairdos on Friday after months of unchecked growth, exposed roots and disaster dye jobs.

Guelph is among the areas of Ontario allowed to advance to Phase 2 of the reopening of the economy, which includes some services like hairdressing.

Pina Marfisi owns two Acqua salons in Downtown Guelph, one on Wyndham Street North and another around the corner on Quebec Street. She said she was thrilled to be reopening on Friday.

“We are so fortunate to get back. It was a little bit of a struggle and now that we are back it’s like we were never gone,” said Marfisi. 

By mid-day on Friday, the salon was booked into the middle of next week due to the demand.

“We are getting a lot of calls from Toronto and Hamilton areas, but we are saying no for now because we know those are hot spots,” she said. “Right now we are just happy to have all of our clients back.”

Customers are asked to wear a mask, apply hand sanitizer and have their temperature taken upon entering.

Marfisi said her staff has seen some pandemic disasters, including home dye jobs gone wrong, months of natural roots showing through the old colour or self haircuts.

Repairing improperly cut bangs is a lot easier than fixing bad home colour jobs, she said.

“In desperate times I guess you try it. We put on social media not to try it, but they did it anyways so we have been fixing a lot of colour,” said Marfisi.

Crown Barber Shop owner Tania Van Spyk doesn’t take appointments, so she saw one client after another on Friday.

Because of the size of her shop and physical distancing requirements, clients had to wait in their cars for their turn.

Although it was unpaid, Van Spyk said it was kind of nice to get a break from the job.

“It’s not often in this profession that you can take off for months at a time,” said Van Spyk.

Acqua employs over 30 staff between the two salons. Marfisi said they were happy to be back doing what they love after being laid off for almost three months.

“I think they did a lot of soul searching,” said Marfisi. “I think they are realizing how important their job is to them because we all take it for granted. To have three months off it allows you to think how much you miss it.”

“Everybody is full of love. It’s pretty remarkable,” she said.