How to Cope With Face Mask Anxiety

woman feeling anxious while wearing a face mask. This image is here to illustrate the topic of this blog.

Whether you’re in the salon doing treatments or doing your weekly shop, wearing a face mask is now required by law.

Whether you agree with them or not, they’re probably going to be around for a while, but let’s face it, they aren’t always practical, they can be uncomfortable, and they can provoke anxiety in a lot of people.

How do you feel about wearing a face mask; hot? Sweaty? Panicky? All of these are quite common. But even if you struggle with wearing your face mask, here’s how to cope with face mask anxiety.

Why can wearing a face mask make you feel anxious?

They can feel claustrophobic

Even though you aren’t in a closed space, a face mask can feel restrictive so it might seem that way which can trigger feelings of anxiety, especially as your nose and mouth are covered too.

They can produce sensations that feel like anxiety

Wearing a face mask can make you feel hot and like you can’t breathe, which the body might interpret as anxiety. You’ll notice that if your mask has a filter, it can feel like it’s more difficult to breathe because the filter resists the air flow.

They are uncomfortable

Face masks can be very uncomfortable to wear in hot weather, and if you wear glasses, they can steam up. The same goes for some face shields and visors which when combined with a mask can make it very difficult for us therapists to see what we’re doing during intricate treatments.

How to cope with face mask anxiety

Check your thoughts

Notice what you’re telling yourself about wearing a face mask. Is it something along the lines of ‘I can’t stand wearing this, I can’t wait to take it off!’? This is a normal thought to have, but instead try telling yourself that you might be uncomfortable right now, but you’re keeping yourself and your clients safe, and you can take it off between treatments. 

Breathe

If you’re feeling tense and anxious, you’ll probably be taking shallow breaths under your mask, which really won’t help. Shallow breathing creates an anxiety response in the body, so when you’re feeling anxious, take some deep breaths, breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. Make the exhale longer than the inhale, and try to breathe in for a count of four, then out for a count of 6.

Try different styles of mask

Everyone is different, so finding the right mask for you might be a case of trial and error. If you feel anxious wearing a face mask, masks made from thicker material might not be the right choice for you, so try a lighter one. Try a few different ones until you find one that you feel comfortable with.

My top tip to reduce face mask anxiety

Try a little aromatherapy inside of your mask. Some essential oils are known to reduce anxiety, so what I like to do is to use my Helenergy Pulse Point Roller Ball inside of my mask. It’s full of essential oils which help to promote inner calm. Get in touch if you’d like to buy one and try it for yourself.

It’s a good idea to have regular breaks from your mask and visor too.

I hope these tips have helped. Let me know what helps keep your face mask anxiety in check.

Steph

x

Reopening Your Salon in a Post Covid-19 World

manicure therapist wearing PPE

If all goes according to the government plan, salons may be able to open again in July after months of being closed due to the coronavirus outbreak. There has so much uncertainty for our industry, and so much heartbreak for us and our clients at having to close our doors for what was the foreseeable future.

But as the time fast approaches when we might finally be able to get back to doing what we love, there are naturally going to be worries and concerns about reopening and how we will operate in a post-Covid 19 world.

The cost of reopening

Most of us have had no income for months so money is a worry, and there will inevitably be costs involved in reopening our businesses. There are going to be very strict regulations that we’ll have to abide by around PPE and hygiene, and meeting the standards is going to cost money.

As well as having to invest in PPE, we’ll also have to rethink how we book in appointments. We’ll have to leave longer in between clients so this will mean we won’t earn as much as we usually would if we were booked up back to back as we often are. This means we’ll have to be creative in thinking about how we will bring in income and cover costs.

You might panic and go into overdrive with offers to entice people back, but the fact is, the country and the industry is unlikely to be back to any kind of normal anytime soon, and you can’t slash prices forever.

You might have to raise prices initially

This can seem scary, but you have to factor in the cost of PPE and other measures you’re having to introduce like extra cleaning. You might even decide to charge the client the cost of the PPE that’s needed during their treatment.

Upsell products from treatments

Sales will be so important in our industry going forwards, and upselling products from treatments is a good way to help clients continue to get the benefits at home in-between treatments. Let’s face it, many people have turned to at-home treatments anyway during the lockdown so this will not be unusual for them.

However you decide to bring in some income, Please remember to charge your worth for your hard work, qualifications, and training. Make sure you value yourself just as you did before all of this happened. If nothing else, clients will have realised during this time just how valuable you really are!

Reopening your salon: Practical tips

It’s not going to be as easy as just carrying on as normal as long as you wear a mask and gloves. There’s a lot to think about including:

Are there any treatments you feel you can’t safely provide, like facials, for example?

You might want to rethink your menu of services for now so you can focus on those you can safely do in the time you have.

How will you book appointments in going forward?

First, think about whether you’ll reopen full-time or only on certain days each week. Then you’ll be able to decide how to deal with bookings.

  • Are you going to prioritise people who were already booked in but had their appointments cancelled due to the enforced closure?
  • How much time will you dedicate to each appointment? (minimum and maximum)
  • How much time will you need between appointments so you can clean, dispose of PPE, and meet the strict new hygiene standards?
  • How many clients will you allow in the salon at any one time (bearing in mind the need to social distance).
  • Will you ban walk-ins and cash payments? Both of these will make it harder to adhere to the new hygiene regulations.

How will you organise your staff?

If you employ staff, you’ll have to think about:

  • How many staff can be in the salon at any one time?
  • Will you need to stagger shifts or limit the days they are at work?

Communicating with clients

Whether it’s via your website, social media channels, or both, you’ll need to communicate with clients about how things are going to change in the salon when you reopen.

First, announce when you’ll be reopening, then:

  • Tell them about your new opening hours and how to book appointments.
  • Reassure them that there will be strict hygiene measures in place and what they need to do when they attend the salon.
  • Remind them that under no circumstances should they attend the salon if they are feeling unwell.
  • Finally, don’t forget to thank clients for their patience, understanding, and loyalty!

 

When we reopen, there might be teething problems as we all try to get to grips with the post-coronavirus world. But we all love what we do and we love our clients, and this is half of the battle.

I’d love you to get in touch with me if you have any questions or concerns about reopening, or you just want to get something off your chest. My door is always open.

Steph

x