Since Corona virus entered the borders of Ghana, not only has the economic landscape been affected, but the general livelihood of ordinary Ghanaians who make a living through their day to day activities. One of such groups are hairdressers and cosmetologist who have had to close their businesses because of the high level of physical contact associated with the job .Among the essential services indicated by the President of Ghana, hair dressing salons and sauna lounges weren’t part of them. The economic repercussion of these decisions on hairdressers, cosmetologists, barbers and other people that fall within the economic bracket can not be underestimated . Not only are their services not being rendered, but their clients are also feeling the impact of the lockdown as their beauty procedures have been put on hold.
So we’ve been thinking ; how many times do you plait your hair in a month? What of your barber routine and beards? How is the lockdown treating you and your hair ? Do you often get massages? Are they luxuries or necessities that you’ve being enjoying?
Personally, I keep my hair natural and unfortunately didn’t get to plait before the partial lockdown was put in place. As soon as I realized that Corona Virus had entered our borders, I became extra careful and started taking extra precautions to keep myself and children safe. I wash my hair from home, tie them into pieces because holding a pony means the hair will be extra hard which I can’t comb very easily. Since the lockdown took effect, most shops have closed and lots of people are not having access to their hairdressers and cosmetologists because these activities require close contact. We are all being advised to stay away to keep safe and stay in our rooms and little spaces.
Speaking to Eunice Okwan, she tells us that she’s a cosmetologist who does home service for most of her clients. Services including makeup, massage, hair dressing among many others. Since she doesn’t have a structure, her job requires traveling to clients abodes to offer them her services . Miss Okwan explained her job required direct body contact and she wants both she and her clients to observe all the rules of social distancing as set by the WHO, and later the President of Ghana. ” I’ve told my clients I won’t be offering my services till lockdown is lifted, which we hope will be soon”
Miss Okwan explains that depending on the market, the day or services she renders , “I am able to make 300-500 cedis . But since the lockdown was instituted, like any business, I’ve been out of daily revenue.”
She explains that, like any other family, her parents business has also halted because of the lockdown. ” My dad isn’t working so you know what it means”. I’m an older child and I help take care of my siblings but I’ve not being able to make money for these weeks that passed. I also depend on this same money for my basic needs, and it’s not been easy for me.”
She added that, “Although I produce some other stuff like jeweleries , the market order isn’t coming in like before. Everyone is trying to stay alive”.
Bola, a client who goes out to attend to her hair every 2 or 3 weeks tells us that she hasn’t been able to visit the salon since the announcement of the partial lockdown took effect.
She says as for now, she’s compelled to manage it from home.
” Fortunately , I have found a hair shampoo in my stuff and so I just try to wash it” . She explains that, the process of washing, drying and combing is very difficult and painful, especially when her hair is ‘natural’.
“I am unable to style my hair nicely or even plait it”
She says she just holds a normal ponytail with the help of her shea butter hair cream. Quickly adding that, she can’t wait to get back to the salon for her usual hair plaited styles.
In another interview, a hairdresser by name Rafiyatu Issah whose job has also been affected by the lockdown says on a good day, she could make around around 150 or 200 cedis . She explains this amount is what she uses to take care of herself and children. She explained that since the lockdown took effect, her clients are all locked up so no one is even coming as she works at the entrance of her house. When asked whether she’d work even when her clients came, she said for now, she’s observing the protocols so she won’t do it.
Inna Hajar Diko says she plaited her hair a week before the lockdown took effect. She indicated she is currently thinking of unbraiding and washing it herself because of the itches and discomfort.
“I can’t keep my hair unbraided for two weeks” She explains her hair needs care and attention if not, it will become hard and stiff, and then start to break. She said she mostly goes to the salon for them to unbraid and wash but the lockdown has affected all of that. “Doing your hair requires close contact and we are all trying to observe the social distancing protocols.”
Now that the President has announced the lifting of the lockdown. Knowing that the virus has multiplied in Ghana, are you willing to risk is to get a hair routine?
Tell us you views in the comments below.