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Are barber shops, nail salons, massage parlors, spas, and tattoo parlors open? What safety precautions must they take?

Last Updated: 06/04/2021

The following types of personal care businesses may reopen in New Jersey so long as they adopt the required safety protocols:

  • At-home personal care services, including in-home massage and body work services;
  • Beauty salons;
  • Barber shops;
  • Cosmetology shops
  • Spas, including day spas and medical spas;
  • Electrology facilities;
  • Hair braiding shops;
  • Massage parlors;
  • Nail salons;
  • Tanning salons; and
  • Tattoo parlors.

Personal care businesses must also follow health and safety standards issued by the Department of Health and the Division of Consumer Affairs.

What to Expect at Personal Care Businesses

The following summarizes some of the protocols contained in EO 192, EO 194, EO 242; DCA protocols for cosmetology, hairstyling, massage therapy, and bodywork services, and DOH protocols for tanning facilities and body art establishments. However, this summary is not a replacement for fully complying with all health and safety standards and businesses should read full guidance carefully to ensure full compliance.

Cosmetology, hairstyling, massage, and bodywork businesses must follow the following guidelines:

  • Businesses can open at full capacity indoors and outdoors. Establishments do not need to limit occupancy to a number that ensures all individuals or groups can remain six feet apart.
  • Under Executive Order No. 242, the State no longer requires face coverings for most indoor public spaces, however businesses may continue to require face coverings for employees, customers, and guests.
  • Encourage premises owners, managers, staff who are not fully vaccinated to wear a cloth face covering, disposable mask or other personal protective equipment at all times before, during, and after performing services.
  • If masks or gloves are required by employers, they must be provided to employees;
  • Social distancing is not required, however businesses are encouraged to follow CDC safety guidelines and social distancing to save lives and prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • Saunas, steam rooms, and shared bathing facilities may reopen.
  • Install hand sanitizers for use by clients and staff.
  • Improve ventilation by increasing the circulation of outdoor air as much as possible, by opening doors and windows and by using HEPA air filtration systems, whenever possible.
  • Staying informed about new developments and guidance related to COVID-19.

Tattoo parlors and tanning salons must follow the following guidelines:

  • Individuals entering the establishment are no longer required to wear masks in these public settings, though unvaccinated individuals are strongly encouraged to do so. Practitioners performing services are strongly encouraged to wear a mask.
  • Provide contactless/touchless payment options, wherever feasible.
  • Encourage clients in tanning facilities to provide their own goggles or the facility should provide disposable goggles.
  • Establishments are encouraged to clean and sanitize/disinfect all common areas and contact surfaces prior to opening, after each use, and at the end of each day.

Requirements to Protect Employees and Others

Employers must comply with the following requirements:

  • Provide approved sanitization materials for employees and visitors at no cost to those individuals;
  • Ensure that employees practice hand hygiene and provide employees with sufficient break time for that purpose;
  • Routinely clean and disinfect all high-touch areas in accordance with DOH and CDC guidelines;
  • Prior to each shift, conduct daily health checks, such as temperature screenings, visual symptom checking, self-assessment checklists, and/or health questionnaires, consistent with CDC guidance;
  • Do not allow sick employees to enter workplace and follow requirements of applicable leave laws; and
  • Promptly notify employees of any known exposure to COVID-19 at the worksite; and
  • Clean and disinfect the worksite in accordance with CDC guidelines when an employee at the site has been diagnosed with COVID-19 illness.

Detailed requirements and exemptions for certain employers can be found in the full text of Executive Order No. 192.

Source: DCA Administrative Order No. 2021-13, DOH Executive Directive No. 20-015; Executive Order No. 192; Executive Order No. 194; Executive Order No. 242