Stylist reopens salon, continues to grow online voice

A stylist in Zionsville talks about reopening her salon, scheduling 12-hour days to get all her clients in by end of June. (Kennedy Webber)
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ZIONSVILLE, Ind. (WTHR) —If you have lots of gray regrowth, Kimberly Hubbard is trying to get you an appointment as soon as possible.

Phase 2 of the Back On Track Indiana state guidelines allow salons in most Indiana counties to open this week.

"We're booked. I'm booked for probably six weeks out right now," Hubbard said. "I don't have an opening."

A stylist for 25 years, Hubbard owns Kimberly's Hair Design on Main Street in Zionsville. She said it's her fourth and final salon of her career. She's scheduling 12-hour days and expects to get to all her clients by late June.

Kimberly's Hair Design is a salon in Zionsville owned by Kimberly Hubbard. (Kennedy Webber)

"I'm planning on doing Monday through Saturday. So I'm going to take one day off a week and I'm going to do that for at least four weeks," Hubbard said.

During the shutdown, Hubbard created the Indiana Stylist United group on Facebook. She hoped for 100 members in the private group and was shocked to see it grow to 4,200 members in a matter of weeks.

"It grew very quickly within, like, two weeks. So it told me there were a lot of people out there hurting, scared, and just looking for that place to go to for support," Hubbard said.

Hubbard said her peers were desperate for information about how to survive, interpret guidelines from the state cosmetology board, and apply for unemployment.

Now the dialogue is about unemployment payments and how to do their jobs with new restrictions.

"We can only have one person at a time in the salon per stylist and we have to be six feet apart. Between each client, we had to mark out time so that we could disinfect, so we have to wipe down everything," Hubbard said. "We have to sterilize our utensils, all brushes, all combs. I have to change my cape, gloves. I'm wearing a mask. I'm also wearing protective eyewear. You don't have to wear the protective eyewear. That's just something I'm choosing to do."

She is also choosing to continue her co-administrative work on Facebook, sensing she has created an increasingly powerful voice to educate and advocate.

"I think that is one of the biggest frustrations on the page...we feel valued by our clients. But as a whole, we don't feel valued as a professional industry. We just cut hair. I don't think people realize what we have to do to get our license...the time and the money that we spent to do that education.

"I want people to unite. And that's what we've done on here. We're sharing so much. And it's just unbelievable what it's doing for our industry. So I'm excited," Hubbard said.