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Gov. Abbott hopes Texas barbershops and hair salons reopen by mid-May

Though many other businesses will reopen Friday, it'll be at least several more weeks before people can get their hair cut.

HOUSTON — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says it’s possible that barbershops and hair salons could resume operations in mid-May.

In a news conference Monday, he said he realizes these shops are eager to reopen and so are their customers. He said it will happen, provided the coronavirus pandemic in Texas is kept in check.

Meanwhile, shop-owners in Houston are getting ready.

The owners of the Upper Hand salons have been keeping Houstonians’ hairlines tidy for 23 years. That all came to a stop on March 19.

The owners said they are itching to get back in business and expecting a lot of customers when it finally happens.

"A mad rush -- I do expect there to be a rush," Rachel Gower, co-owner of the Upper Hand, said.

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She said the hair salon industry has spent the past six weeks planning how shops can reopen and what that would look like.

"You might see that stations are moved a bit more apart, maybe six feet," she said. "You'll definitely see all employees wearing masks, and you might even see some employees wearing face shields."

The problem, she said, is that face shields and other things like cleaning products are on back-order because everyone wants them.

But she said the whole hair salon process will change, from making your appointment to checkout.

The industry in the Lone Star State is overseen by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.

"We'll be providing guidelines to those licensees about the next steps they should take, things that they can do in addition to the already stringent measures that they operate under," TDLR spokeswoman Tela Mange said.

Gower said she is disappointed that shops still need to wait several more weeks before reopening.

"Obviously, we'll support that, but we really feel strongly that there are so many ways that it can be safe to be in a salon right now," Gower said.

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