My absolute favourite side of the world of beauty is in-salon treatments. For hair, nails, whatever. My happy place is 100% going to a salon for a session of treatments. Even when it’s a more ‘maintenance’ treatment like brows or waxing. I still love it as I come out feeling a bit more ‘together’ and like I’m successfully being an organised adult (which I am aware there is more to than having a regular brow shape… although I wish it was as easy as that). I have a local beauty salon I visit every couple of weeks for nails/brows etc now but what I hadn’t managed to find was a local hair salon. Instead I was still opting to travel into London to get my hair sorted. Which I equally love doing as there are some amazing salons in London and I’ve always been delighted with the results. But on the other hand, with a baby on the way I know that lengthy salon appointments for refreshing my colour are going to be a push anyway. So finding somewhere more local to me makes sense if I want to even attempt to juggle my salon-time and life as a mum. Ok, maybe wishful thinking that I’ll be able to juggle…but I’m hoping I can make it work!
HOB Salons Epping
I was invited to visit one of the chain of HOB Salons – which are based all over London and surrounding areas (with a few dotted further out around the country). I chose the HOB Salons Epping branch as it’s pretty close to where I live and convenient for me to get to. The Epping salon is also one of the newest in the chain too, so I was interested to see what it was like as a sparkly new salon. The chain of salons is actually 35 years old in 2018, having started back in 1983 with a branch in Mill Hill. The whole aim at the start was to bring the quality of West End salons to the suburbs of London. Which is something I feel I can relate to, as having only had my hair done in Central London salons for years I (rightly or wrongly) felt a little hesitant to branch out to the more local options ‘in case they aren’t as good’. So this felt like a good way to take that step and find a salon I could trust.
I also knew the HOB Salon chain has a great reputation in high level training and supporting their team to become award winning. My last in-London appointment was with Christel Lundqvist who now runs her own Stil Salon in West London – who was excellent – spent a lot of her career at HOB Salons before she branched out on her own. So knowing this was the level of talent they have had, trained and supported in-house gave me an immediate feeling of confidence and trust.
My appointment at HOB Salons Epping was with Kelly for colour and Maria for cut and blow dry. Whenever I go for colour I am ALWAYS guilty of leaving it that bit too long and also wanting to come out with a ‘fresh new look’ where sometimes (especially going forward) I need to think of it more as a regular thing that’s maintenance rather than a transformation. This is where Kelly was absolutely excellent in being realistic with my expectations and making recommendations as to how I can tweak the colour I have to mean maintenance isn’t something that either costs a fortune or takes half a day every 8 weeks. Because frankly, as much as I wish that was my life – it won’t be. I need to think of something that can be maintained easily and still look as good as possible between appointments. So my new years (can I still say that in Feb!?) or my 2018 goal for hair is to be more regular and routine with my colour and cut sessions. With the aim being that the next one is in around 8-10 weeks, most likely for a partial head of highlights (around the face and parting). Then in another 8-10 weeks with a half head, then another 8-10 for another full head. Ideally squeezing in a trim at the same time.
Along with her recommendations for a routine on colour she also suggested I added in some darker sections as whilst the overall colour of my hair is very light blonde (just how I like it) my natural colour is both darker and warmer and especially through the back this can show through. But by adding a few darker bits in it will not only add a little interest/dimension to my colour, it will also make maintenance a bit easier as it will help sort of ‘blend’ the roots in a little more so I won’t have that harsh line on the parting quite as obviously.
It’s honest and helpful recommendations like this that really do make me feel comfortable in a salon environment. Like the colourist is really keen to get the best result for what you want AND what is practical based on your own routines and life. As much as I wish I could be a pale platinum blonde, the upkeep and regular root touch-ups that are needed just aren’t realistic for me at the moment. So this creates a happy medium where I get that lighter/brighter overall feeling. But with little touches that make it work for me.
Cut wise, I knew I wanted to take a fair chunk of length off. It was November the last time I had my hair cut and it had actually grown quite a lot (pregnancy perks!) but I wanted to take it back up to collarbone length. With the idea being it will be a little shorter and easier to style. Maria got the length exactly how I wanted it (collarbone length but still long enough for me to tie up) and with only longer layers and a fairly blunt finish.
I’m really happy to have found a salon that works for me in terms of locality that I’m delighted with the hair colour and cut. Now my big challenge for 2018 is to keep up the regular appointments and stay on top of maintenance and avoid the dreaded roots re-growth. I will manage to juggle motherhood and a beauty regime!
*Photography by www.bangonstyleblog.com
I was a guest of HOB Salons for the colour & cut appointment.