THE SNP have issued a response after First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was criticised for briefly not wearing a face mask on a campaign visit.

Police Scotland has confirmed that it is “assessing” a complaint received on the matter.

A video posted on social media and shared by Scottish Tory MSPs shows the SNP leader not wearing a mask during a visit to a barber's in East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, on Saturday.

At the time there was a legal requirement to wear a face covering in most indoor public places in Scotland, including shops, public transport and hairdressers. That rule moved into guidance on Monday.

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In the video, Sturgeon is seen without a face covering as she mingles with customers and pats the head of a man in a barber’s chair while mimicking the sound of an electric razor.

She is wearing a tartan face mask in the video of her visit to Iconic Gents Hair posted on her official Twitter account, in which she can be seen shaving a man’s beard.

An SNP spokesperson said: "The First Minister was invited into the barbers during an outdoor visit on the street.

"Within a few seconds, she realised she hadn't put her mask back on and immediately put it on."

Among those to have complained to Police Scotland was former Tory party treasurer in Moray Jane Lax.

Lax was suspended from the party in 2019 after a vile tweet about the First Minister’s miscarriage.

A Police Scotland spokesman said: “We can confirm that we have received a complaint which is currently being assessed.”

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The legal requirement to wear a face mask in indoor settings in Scotland moves into guidance tomorrow.

The National: First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was on the campaign trail in East Kilbride. Picture: Emily MacinnesFirst Minister Nicola Sturgeon was on the campaign trail in East Kilbride. Picture: Emily Macinnes

The Scottish Government has strongly recommended that people continue to wear them where appropriate.

The Alba Party’s general secretary Chris McEleny (below) said: “This highlights that compliance is now completely out of the window and any notion that once Scotland fully aligns itself to Boris Johnson’s Covid surrender strategy on Monday it is highly doubtful we will see a high proportion of the public continue to wear face masks.

The National: Chris McEleny

“With this gamble we will just need to hope that future variants don’t pop up that vaccinations don’t protect us from.”

Scottish Conservative health spokesman Dr Sandesh Gulhane MSP said: “The video clearly shows Nicola Sturgeon isn’t practising what she preaches on facemasks.

“She’s happy virtue signalling for official photos but behind closed doors it’s clear she doesn’t believe in her own rules so why should anyone else.

“This is blatant hypocrisy from the First Minister who has now shown her true colours.

“The public, who have been under these legal Covid restrictions for over two years, deserve an apology for this rule break.”