After three months locked down because of COVID-19, hair salons and barbershops in Ottawa are back in business.

On June 12, the province introduced Stage 2 of its reopening and lifted restrictions on many businesses, including haircutting services.

With appointments now booking all at once, shop owners are relieved to be back in action.

“At first, I was feeling so nervous because I didn’t know what was going to happen the next day. It was like, a moment of uncertainty,” said Lydia Anganga, owner of Lydia Beauty Salon on Walkley Road.

“So, I’m excited to be back because I’m doing what I love to do,” said Anganga. “This is what I like to do.”

Before and After: Here are some Ottawa citizens getting a grooming after months of lengthy locks.

Ottawa journalist Joseph Tunney, before getting his hair cut at Not Your Father’s Barber on Murray Street:”I would describe my hair right now as, I have the hair of a muppet? Um, probably specifically Animal, the drummer.” [Photo © Eden Suh]
Tunney, all smiles outside of Not Your Father’s Barber after his fresh cut. [Photo © Eden Suh]
Benita Ezeh went to Lydia Beauty Salon Tuesday afternoon, June 16, after waiting since March to have her hair relaxed. “My hair is very coarse and it’s very hard to — it’s painful when it’s like this. So when I get it relaxed now, it’s going to be soft and easy to take care of,” Ezeh said before her hair treatment. [Photo © Eden Suh]
Lydia Anganga, owner of Lydia Beauty Salon, is seen working on Ezeh’s hair relaxing treatment. [Photo © Eden Suh]
“It looks really good,” Ezeh said about her hair after relaxing it. [Photo © Eden Suh]
Jordan Holmes, explaining how he felt about not having a haircut for three months. He usually got one every two weeks before COVID-19: “I mean, I put it into perspective. It was a mild inconvenience for me. Certainly a lot of people have been impacted in a lot more serious of ways. But yeah, I missed it for sure.” [Photo © Eden Suh]
Zach El-Masri, an employee of Not Your Father’s Barber on Murray Street, cut Holmes’ hair on Saturday. El-Masri has been cutting Holmes’ hair for three years. [Photo © Eden Suh]
After the haircut: “I feel really good. I feel really good. It’s like the first sort of sense of normalcy I’ve had in the last three months.” [Photo © Eden Suh]
“My roots have grown out a lot,” said Jenn Grindon, just outside of Suite Thirteen Hair Design on Clyde Avenue, before getting her hair done. [Photo © Eden Suh]
“I love it!” Grindon exclaimed two hours later. She got highlights in her hair by her stylist, Courtney Gardiner, who specializes in platinum blonde. [Photo © Eden Suh]
Some people have felt uncomfortable with others seeing their grown-out hair. “It’s not crazy long, long — but it’s super long compared to what I usually have. It’s been driving me crazy,” Fil Stipanac said about his hair pre-cut. [Photo © Eden Suh]
Stipanac got his haircut from the Silver Fox Barbershop in the ByWard Market after a last-minute booking. “Huge relief,” he said. “Knowing now that I’m comfortable again to actually interact and go outside and do things. I feel much more relieved than I did before.” [Photo © Eden Suh]