The Great American Barbershop in Stevenson Ranch has been affected by COVID-19 restrictions.

Southern California once again has been  filled with new restrictions and guidelines. Gov. Gavin Newsom, in an announcement Thursday, said the state would enact such orders by region when  ICU bed availability fell to 15% or lower. The regionwide order went into effect at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday when the ICU availability sloped to 12.5%.

With the restrictions ongoing as of now, lots of small businesses will have to prepare for the worst. One small business group greatly affected is the barbers, hairdressers, and salon owners. Their job requires more contact and because of that, their businesses have been hit harder through the pandemic more than most.

One barber shop in particular has felt the full effects of the virus. The Great American Barbershop, located in Stevenson Ranch, has been open since January, and since then, COVID-19 has not given the barbers a break. 

“It’s been a rough year,” said Yvette Dorgalli, one of the shop’s barbers. “Being shut down for a minimum of three weeks isn’t going to help, especially around the holidays when it’s usually the busiest.”

According to Dorgalli, the barbers have been doing about the same thing since they opened. 

“As a barber, we need 1,500 hours of training and to pass a state board exam, most of which is on client sanitation and protecting,” she said. We sanitize everything after each client even before the virus so not much has changed in terms of that. The only extra precaution that we needed to make was making sure everyone wears a face mask and limiting capacity.”

View of inside the Great American Barbershop. Photo courtesy Yvette Dorgalli

The barber shop’s hours have also been affected by the restrictions.

“We used to be open 9-8 weekdays and 9-7 weekends and now the shop is only open 11-6 weekdays and 10-6 weekends,” Dorgalli said. The same thing has happened to other businesses in the hair world as well. Jessica Morelli is an award-winning hairstylist at the  Capella Salon in Studio City, a suburb of the Los Angeles area. She started her career as a colorist at the Butterfly Loft Salon, located in the Encino/Woodland Hills area. She has worked with A-List celebrity clientele, fashion designers, musicians, and editorial magazines. She has been experiencing the same problems as the Great American Barbershop.

A map of coronavirus severity in Southern California. Courtesy ABC7

“Business is slow, Morello said. “There is always an ebb and flow, but we took a hard hit this time.” 

She also added how the new lockdown will affect her personally. 

“There is still rent, electric bills, utilities, etc. to pay.” 

Just like other barber shops and salons, Jessica has the same guidelines and will be following them. 

“We have lowered capacity beyond the suggested standard. Masks, lowered capacity, temperatures are taken, waivers are signed.” 

The restrictions are expected to last another three weeks, or until the ICU availability is back to 15% or more.

To book an appointment with the Great American Barbershop call (661) 200-3966 or visit their website at Home – The Great American Barbershop To make an appointment with Jessica Morelli please visit her website at Woodland Hills Hair Stylist – Jessica Warburton or call at +1 323 375-4877

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