Will Scotland’s greenlight for facial treatments drive cross-border wellness tourism?
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Will Scotland’s greenlight for facial treatments drive cross-border wellness tourism?

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First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, has given the go-ahead for all Scottish sectors of the spa, beauty and wellness industry to reopen in Scotland on 22 July.

Scotland’s official government guidelines laying out its lockdown exit plan, states that: "Beauticians, nail salons, spas and make-up counters have been given an indicative opening date of 22 July subject to physical distancing and enhanced hygiene measures."

This overarching relaxation of lockdown will allow Scottish spas to offer facial treatments – something which English locations aren’t yet allowed to do as the government is only allowing treatments ‘below the neck’.

Spa Business believes that this unique selling point could act as a powerful marketing angle for Scottish spas and potentially lead to a rise in cross-border wellness tourism as consumers may flock to Scotland for treatments which aren’t available in the rest of the UK.

The Scottish government has produced a checklist for reopening and the reopening phase for close-contact services which states that: "Specific consideration should be given to employees/operators working in the ‘breathing zone’ or ‘high-risk zone’ of the customer (the area near the eyes, nose or mouth of the customer)."

In a move to gain information about the rest of the UK’s progress with facials, UK MPs, Carolyn Harris and Judith Cummins – who co-chair the Beauty, Aesthetics and Wellbeing APPG – have written to the Minister of State, Kwasi Kwarteng.

The letter urges Kwarteng to provide a timeline for resuming facials as well as requesting further financial support for the industry and bringing forward an economic stimulus package for the sector.

British industry body, BABTAC, has recently urged beauty professionals in England not to conduct any treatments above the neck, warning that they may face up to two years in prison if they do.

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First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon has given the go-ahead for all Scottish sectors of the spa, beauty and wellness industry to reopen in Scotland on 22 July.
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