Toledo massage, tattoo shops prepare to reopen amid COVID-19 pandemic

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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - It's news that those at Toledo's tattoo and massage shops have been waiting for. On Tuesday, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted gave the green light for workers in both industries to reopen on Friday.

"We're excited to get back to it," Permanent Skin Artistry owner Jack "Jay Jay" Brown said.

"I'm just really happy to be back," Simply Massage Toledo owner Dinah Miller added.

After being closed for more than a month, Miller said her customers are eager to get back to their massages.

"I'm getting messages through my Facebook, our business page, cell phones, everything," Miller said.

When time comes to reopen, new safety standards will have to be followed. For Miller it means wearing a mask, limiting the number of people in her shop and cleaning between bookings.

"We're going to sanitize everything down from the door handles to the bathroom, if [customers] use it," Miller said. "Anything that they touch."

While some shops will reopen by week's end, others will not.

"Just finding out about the green light, it's going to take some time to get the shop ready," Brown said.

Brown says being closed has been tough. While staying shuttered for a few more days won't be easy, he says it's necessary to get things in compliance.

"We're going to be putting up safety shields over all the counters to make sure there's a barrier between us and the public," Brown said. "We’re taking out the chairs in the waiting room, it’s going to be very minimal. Most of it’s going to be by appointment now.”

To ensure everyone's protected, Brown says he's also requiring customers to wear masks.

"Customers should be wearing masks to keep us safe, and it's just safety for everybody," Brown said.

Whether getting tattoos or a massage, workers in Ohio's shops are ready to get back to it while also being safe.

"We're ready to pump out some tattoos and pierce some people," Brown said.

"People are real excited to come back, and so am I," Miller said.