Dubbo hairdresser Ann Lyons is cutting and colouring around the clock to catch up her valued clients after two months of COVID lockdown.
The Hair Predictions owner has worked 14-hour days in the wake of restrictions easing on October 11 - and she's thrilled to be back.
Ms Lyons said her reopening plan would allow her to achieve her aim of seeing everyone by Wednesday, nine working days after getting back to business.
"I started, two weeks before we opened, reorganising appointments, so that everyone was in order and it was still fair," she said.
"I started work at six on Monday, I've done appointments from 6.30 to my last appointment that I take is eight o'clock, for this week, just to catch up all those people who had appointments.
"They respect their hairdressing service and make an appointment six weeks in advance so I felt I needed to get them all through before I started taking anyone else.
"So by Wednesday I'll have got through all of those with the long hours and then I'll be back to pre-booking normally."
Ms Lyons' love of her profession and loyalty to her clients is powering her through the long hours.
"It was wonderful to come back to work, I love my work, so it was just wonderful to be able to see people again, and get back to doing what I love doing," she said.
It was wonderful to come back to work, I love my work...Hairdresser Ann Lyons
Bills to pay during lockdown and wondering when she would get back to work were hard, Ms Lyons said, but her concern was also with her clients.
"Worrying about those people you know, because of the hairdressing you know so much about people, all those people who are on their own and you know they don't have any family here and you know that some of those people for the last 18 months, because the last 18 months have been so different, I'm the only person they constantly see and know," she said.
The NSW government's reopening has come with rules for salons including checking COVID vaccination compliance and density limits.
Ms Lyons sent a text message to clients saying as soon as they sent her a copy of their vaccination certificate she'd make them an appointment, so it had run smoothly, she said.
The salon hadn't taken walk-ins for 18 months, chairs already at 1.5 metres were moved to comply with density limits, and appointments were made so clients were not passing at the door, Ms Lyons said.
"It's been difficult, but it's probably been difficult for 18 months, it's not been something that's just happened," she said.
The salon owner for 33 years said her industry, along with beauty, gyms and massage had been "highly-impacted" by COVID, and she felt for large salons because of density restrictions.
But she said hairdressers were "pretty resilient", and she felt positive about the future.
"I think we follow the health requirements, and I think we'll all get through it," she said.
"I think our world has changed, definitely, but we need to move with change, don't we... I'm a pretty optimistic person so we'll learn to live with it, and we'll work ways out."