Beauty Shop Dry Out

H2o rationing worries local salons

The cost of that cut and color could go up at salons across San Diego, thanks to looming water restrictions.

After all, you can’t just leave the salon with dye or shampoo in your hair.  And have you ever thought about how many towels they have to wash every day?  It all adds up to a lot of water a day.  And worry is spreading at salons and a lot of other San Diego businesses, where they’re expecting to take a big hit once water restrictions start in San Diego.

"We're paying I think close to maybe $300 bi-monthly," says Todd Bradley, of the Walter Todd Salon in University Heights on Adams Avenue, "It's probably a few gallons per person."  Mutliply that by 25 or more clients a day.

The owners of Walter Todd say they’ve already taken drastic measures to cut down their water usage: installing recirculating pumps on the water heater, so there's always hot water in the sinks (meaning no wasted water while waiting for it to warm up), buying a low-flow washing machine for the piles of towels they have to clean, cutting back on watering the plants outside the shop, and using leaf blowers instead of a hose to keep the sidewalks clean.

“So we're definitely very conscious of the water usage,” Bradley says, "It's going to be difficult to bring it down even lower.  It’s definitely going to affect the bottom line.  We've been trying already before this restrictions have even gone into place to cut back.”

And Bradley says the water woes couldn’t come at a worse time for those in the beauty industry.

“It seems like all the costs are going up across the board, with the products," he says, “And the clients are losing jobs and it's just difficult to find out where we're going to get the money from to cover that cost."

The likelihood is, you may see the cost of that cut and color go up, no matter where you get your hair done in San Diego.

"To be hit with that, you know, we've got to pass it on somewhere, you know, we can't eat it so much," Bradley says.

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