Scotland's hairdressing industry finally got received the news of a long-awaited opening date of July 15 to get back to business.

It was one of a number of businesses given the go ahead for reopening if coronavirus continues to decline in Scotland in an announcement by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon yesterday. Pubs and cinemas were also included in the July opening date.

To applause from MSPs in the chamber, Ms Sturgeon said barbers and hairdressers will also be able to open from July 15.

While an official statement from the National Hair and Beauty Federation, which has several members north of the border, welcomed the news they are keen to find out more on reopening guidance.

In a statement the NHBF said: "First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced today the latest changes to the easing of the lockdown in Scotland. Hairdressers and Barbers will be able to reopen from July 15. Other personal retail services will remain closed until a later date.

"No specific guidance for the hair and beauty sector has been released yet. We have written to the Scottish Government urging for these guidelines to be released without delay or to confirm whether they will be using the guidelines provided for England."

Read more: Nicola Sturgeon: Beer gardens in Scotland set to reopen on July 6

Marc McCune, is an NHBF Board member and is the owner of Eutopia, hair and beauty salons in Glasgow and Helensburgh, will now be preparing for next month's reopening but hopes guidance will be given.

Mr McCune said: “We haven’t seen any guidelines as to exactly what salons will be required to introduce. Salons have been trying to plan for what they think might happen. Some have been installing Perspex screens, but that can cost around £1000 per salon so if you have 10 salons that’s an expense of £10,000 which not actually be necessary.

“We would be looking for a number of things to be clarified in any guidance and in particular surrounded PPE and what we might need. There is no point in buying up equipment we don’t need only to make certain areas in healthcare short when they really need it.”

The federation offered to become involved with governments north and south of the border in preparation for guidance being issued.

Mr McCune added: “We certainly offered our services as we are trying to help people get their livelihoods back. There is a huge amount to consider for salons reopening from bringing people back from furlough, managing hours and working practices. I think we are quite lucky in one way as we expect to see a business bounce when salons initially open, similar to the busy Christmas periods, but there is concern about the weeks thereafter when businesses have all their running costs to take into account again.”

In 2019 there were 3,725 beauty and hair salons and barbershops recorded in Scotland with a combined turnover of more £600 million, 8% of the total UK salon turnover.

Read more: Easing Lockdown: Six new key dates to know in Scotland’s move to new normal

For growing salon chain owner Neil McLean it isn’t just a case of getting back to business when hairdressers are given the green light to open, he will also be expanding his empire.

While some businesses have looked to downscale or may disappear from our town centres altogether, Neil McLean is taking the plunge and opening his third salon. He already owns two, one in the Bruntsfield area of Edinburgh and one in Penicuik, with the third expanding into South Queensferry.

He welcomed yesterday's news, but said there will be a lot of preparation ahead. And already clients have been contacting him to get an appointment.

Mr McLean said: "It is positive news but it is not just a case of opening the doors. We have a lot to take into account. People flooded our social media as soon as the announcement was made with some clients even offering to pay more just to get their hair cut."

A third salon was in the planning since December, but he never imagined lockdown would happen. “We had to close our doors and furlough staff. It has been a very difficult time," Mr McLean said. "One positive is that I have been able to focus on trying to get the new salon ready, but there have been problems there as well as everything just seems to be delayed.

“We were in the midst of planning it when we had to look at the lay out again given the restrictions we will have to put in place to make it a safe environment for staff and clients.”