Mobile barbershop gives WeHo customers outdoor haircut experience

The co-founder said they were days from their grand opening when the COVID-19 pandemic hit and stay-at-home orders were issued.
WEST HOLLYWOOD (KABC) -- Los Angeles County is allowing hair salons and barbershops to reopen for limited indoor service, but a mobile salon in Southern California has been styling hair outdoors for months.

It was Melina Meza's third haircut at The Barber Truck on Thursday.

"This was a great experience. I came to get a quick haircut and that's exactly what happened. Exactly the cut I need. Beautiful day. Get to stroll in and stroll right on out,"

The Barber Truck is a boutique mobile barbershop, located on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood.

Since June, stylists have been providing outdoor haircuts.

"A really effective great way to get my needs met with my hair and maybe get a little tan," customer Nicholas Smith laughed. He's visiting from Florida.

Business is good. But it hasn't been easy.

The Barber Truck co-founder Gregory Bell said they were days from their grand opening when the COVID-19 pandemic hit and stay-at-home orders were issued.

Instead of cutting hair, they had to cut jobs.

"One month turned into three months. So the fact that it extended several more times made it even more challenging," Bell explained.

But after doing some research and finding an area with heavy foot traffic, The Barber Truck partnered with cocktail bar Employees Only LA and set up shop in the parking lot.

Stylist Jaque Demott says she is grateful to return to work.

"It's been very difficult. I sat at home for a month and a half for the first quarantine. A month and a half to two months. I was able to open and then we got shut down again and its hard cause not a lot of people want to get their hair done, they're still scared and I don't blame them," Demott explained.

At The Barber Truck, face coverings are required at all times. Physical distancing measures are in place. And stylists and customers are required to regularly sanitize their hands.

Cutting hair outside has its challenges, especially as SoCal entered another weekend heatwave.

But the owners said outdoor cuts will likely turn into the new normal.

"We think very strongly that even after COVID, even if there's a vaccine, people will still want this indoor or outdoor option and there will be lots of people who feel more comfortable just being outdoors," said Bell.

LA County allows hair salons, barbershops to reopen indoor services with limited capacity
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Officials announced Wednesday that Los Angeles County is updating its health order to allow hair salons and barbershops to resume indoor operations, with capacity limited to 25%.

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