Lafayette,LA - "For me, it was a huge let down closing my business for two months.", says owner of Hair It Is, Jennifer Prejean.
Salons were among the businesses that Gov. John Bel Edwards forced to close their doors at the beginning of the pandemic. Prejean, says it made things difficult for her because she had just hired two new stylists but both had to move on once the shutdown began."In the beginning we were slammed and then reality hit and it went back to so so because of all of the mess was going on. people were fearful."
The new shop had only been open for three years, tension was high around the world due to the pandemic. Having to adapt to the mandates, reopening her shop, her clients were happy to have a friendly voice in their ear after being attached for months."Our emotions were so tried as well, you know in the country. People were so down. I found myself being more of a counselor and a uplifter, but that is part of my job."
Prejean says that her clients are more like family, not being able to service them for a period of time. That feeling of having them back in the chair was truly amazing."Took little selfies with the mask on and everything taking them in the mirror and stuff. it was just a nice reunion to be back doing what i love and being with my people."
The pandemic did help bring new ideas to the shop to bring in an even bigger clientele.
"I made it lighter and brighter, I added on some boutique items. I'm just thankful that I survived. I did not go out of business."
One lesson prejean says that she has learned through it all is, "I've learned to be thankful and never take anything for granted and the most important thing in life is your family and your friends."
There is still a mask mandate in place for Louisiana. Prejean says keeping her clients not only happy but safe is her biggest priority. She also wants residents around Acadiana to know that her shop is up and running for the public and that they are more than welcomed to walk in.