Regis struggles as pandemic, rise of work-from-home keeps customers away

The salon chain posted a significant loss in the second quarter.

While COVID-19 restrictions have been loosened since the lockdowns of March, many Americans haven't returned to their old routines.

The latest sign that the pandemic has led to a major change in consumer habits can be found in the results posted by St. Louis Park-based Regis Corp. on Monday.

The hair salon chain announced its 2nd quarter revenue had fallen 76%, with the company posting a loss of $73.6 million between April and June.

In a statement, CEO Hugh Sawyer said that customers "have not yet returned to historical levels of activity" seen prior to the pandemic, with the company banking on advances in COVID-19 treatment and a vaccine to aid its return to success.

"We remain hopeful that with advances in the treatment of COVID-19 and the potential introduction of new vaccines, customers will return to more typical grooming habits," he said.

Hair salons have mostly been allowed to reopen across the country, albeit with many states implementing capacity restrictions – with Minnesota for example only allowing them to operate at 50% capacity, with reservations required.

Regis says it has responded "vigorously" to the pandemic by introducing new safety protocols at its company- and franchise-owned locations, while it has continued to invest in its merchandise lines.

But it's not just concern over COVID-19 that's keeping people away from salons, but also the rise in working-from-home.

"Most offices and headquarters, headquarters buildings are still closed around the nation," Sawyer said during Monday's earnings call. "And I think people are zooming around in zoom pits to be a little more casual and people are aren't quite as well-groomed as they were when they went to an office."

"But I don't think it's a permanent condition," he continued, adding: "If we get better treatments and if testing improves and God willing, we get this vaccine, I really do believe people ... are anxious to return to a more normal life.

"And I think companies are ready to reopen their headquarters. And when that happens, I think people record and go back to their normal grooming patterns and get the haircut and colored and all that kind of stuff."

Weather update from Novak Weather

Next Up

Jamal Mashburn Jr. / Gopher basketball

Gophers offense disappears in loss to Northwestern

The Gophers are quickly falling out of NCAA tournament contention.

Malik Beasley

Timberwolves Malik Beasley suspended 12 games for offseason incident

Beasley was sentenced to 120 days in jail earlier this month.

Russell Wilson

Vikings fans should REALLY hope Russell Wilson doesn't go to the Bears

Wilson has a 6-0 record against Minnesota and could be on his way to the NFC North.


Celebrated Minnesota musician Peter Ostroushko dies

Ostroushko, who learned his craft in the Ukrainian community of Northeast Minneapolis, had a versatile career including performances with popular artists and orchestras


Costco will bump its minimum wage to $16 next week

The company, which has 12 stores in Minnesota, is pushing ahead of retailers Target and Amazon with its new minimum wage

Seth Green/Gopher Football

Gophers wildcat QB Seth Green announces decision to transfer

Green will have immediate eligibility as a graduate transfer.

Minneapolis skyline

Minneapolis pays 3 times more than it receives in state funds, new report says

This report comes as state lawmakers are debating proposals opponents say would "bail out" the state's largest city.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: Is Kirk Cousins' contract extension helping or hurting the Vikings?

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

University of minnesota sign

U of M gets $5M donation for new center to address racial inequality in healthcare

Using a donation from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, the School of Public Health will work to address racial disparities in healthcare.



Edina's Regis to sell remaining 3,108 company-owned hair salons

The haircare company will go to a fully franchised portfolio.


Regis Corp. announces 290 job cuts across U.S., Canada

The Minneapolis-based company has been making major changes to its business model.

Regis is closing SmartStyle salons in 600 Walmarts

The Edina-based salon chain made the announcement Monday morning.

Target store

Target announces record results as it cashes in from the pandemic

Walmart had posted similarly huge results earlier this week.

Target store

Target sees huge rise in sales thanks to coronavirus, but profits hit

The retail giant saw big jumps in grocery and online sales, but clothing plummeted.


Despite pandemic, Life Time pushes ahead to open downtown co-working space

It was originally planned to open in the fall, but it has been pushed back to April.


Coronavirus: Gov. Walz loosens restrictions to allow 100,000 back to work

The latest executive order has followed consultation with businesses and labor unions.


Target extends $2 pay rise for store workers during pandemic

The retailer's temporary pay boost was due to come to an end on May 2.