They lined up down Northbourne Avenue and around the corner onto the footpath beside London Circuit, around 30 people stretched a safe and socially-acceptable distance apart for a COVID-19 Saturday.
Too early to queue for Mooseheads, the line up of mostly 20 year-olds braved the chilly start to the weekend to be the first to get inked at Freestyle Tattoo Studio.
The lift on restrictions which came into effect at midday on Friday allowed the city's tattoo parlours to open their doors for the first time in 10 weeks.
With 13 artists having been forced to hang up their tattoo guns, Freestyle opened with a weekend of walk-in appointments or "flash pieces" which typically take less than an hour.
The studio managed its social-distancing requirement through a system which saw eager clients in through one door to book and out through another with the promise of a call from the studio when it was safe to return.
Manager Melissa Bottega said while it wasn't business as usual for the studio, it was a relief for the artists to get back to work.
She said as contractors each of the employees had been eligible to apply for JobKeeper independently.
"It was not a super, easy road for everyone," she said.
While the tattooist will all be back this week, the studio's full-time piercer will be forced to stay at home.
With supplies for the studio coming from overseas, artists are relying on their back catalogue. The piercer's bolts, earrings and rings have run short though.
"We're hoping to get a delivery of new stock this week," Ms Bottega said.
"We've had people messaging us for the last two months asking about when they could get in here."
Beauty therapy businesses, nail salons, tanning and waxing services, day spas and massage salons were also permitted to reopen at midday on Friday in Canberra, albeit with new rules designed to prevent the spread of the virus.
Businesses completed a COVID Safe plan, observed strict hand-hygiene requirements and ensured physical distancing as much as possible. They could not exceed one person per four square metres including staff and were asked to keep a record of their customers for contact tracing purposes.
ACT Chief Health Officer Dr Kerryn Coleman said many factors were considered regarding the easing of restriction for businesses, including that some posed a higher risk.
"This is because they might involve groups of people coming together often, people moving in and out of a business facility more often, there might be multiple surfaces people touch within a business, or there may be close contact between people.
"The evidence tells us that the movement and gathering of people who do not know each other are the greatest risk to outbreaks of an infectious disease like COVID-19.
"In addition, we look closely at our ability to contact trace and how we would respond if there was a new case, or a cluster of cases, as we do not want outbreaks."
James Rippon was one of the first few the door with two new tattoos to celebrate his 29th birthday this week.
He said while his party plans had been pretty tame in light of the pandemic, the easing of restriction had presented a more permanent present than a hangover.
"I thought, tattoo studios are open ... why not?!" he said.
With a tea-sipping T-Rex added to his chest and an arrow to his arm, Mr Rippons $400 investment bought his tattoo collection to six.
Ms Bottega said as of midday on Saturday there had been no requests for coronavirus themed tattoos.
"I am interested to see what happens in that regard," Ms Bottega said.
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