Monday, 9 May 2016

Austen Thomson Hair

The quest for a perfect hairdresser is a modern riddle, but once you have cracked the code it is truly one of life's most valued and trusted relationships. Each time you step into a salon to refresh your style or for a much needed pamper, you are surrendering your locks to someone- simultaneously investing in their technical skill and creative vision.

I was contacted by the people at popular Leith based salon, Austen Thomson Hair to see whether I would like to come along for an appointment. Austen runs the salon with partner in business and life, wife Louise and together they are celebrating 5 years in the business and a recent interior makeover.

Their timing was slightly off as I had just had around 6 inches lopped off my hair in recent weeks, but I was definitely keen to meet the team and enjoy a little "me-time" courtesy of their loving care, all within a fresh and newly revamped salon environment.

On arrival, I was greeted by Christie who would be looking after me during my appointment and I instantly felt at ease in her hands. Not knowing me at all, she gained immediate brownie points for snappily arranging a posh pot of coffee to sip on whilst we chatted about my personal hair care.

She was interested to learn more about the products I use, my normal routine, tools, preferred style etc to enable her to build a picture, which would aid her in selecting tailored products for my treatment.

The salon is the ideal size to avoid extreme pressure by feeling like a solo client and strikes a pleasing balance of buzz, interest and relaxation. The decor was fresh and inviting. Muted tones with a few design accents and an altogether open-airy feel. I found myself watching on as Austen and his team chatted with clients and worked on engineering some flawless cuts.

One thing that struck me on first impression, and ran as a constant thread during my entire visit was how I was treated as a client. There also appears to be an undeniably happy vibe between staff, which emanates into the room and creates a setting as fresh as their newly painted walls.

Christie selected the Label M Orange Blossom Shampoo to ensure that the hair was freshly cleansed without being overly stripped. She also chose the Honey and Oat Mask from the Label M range which was painted onto the hair with a brush. A plastic cap helped the treatment develop for a further 10-15 minutes.

While I waited, I received a relaxing head massage to melt away any stresses and strains. The mask was rinsed off and then we set to create some loose, tousled waves with the new GHD Curve waving wand.

Prior to drying, Christie ran a little of the Schwarzkopf Miracle Rose Oil through my hair which kept everything smooth and sleek and also happened to smell incredible. Upon drying my hair, I noticed how soft and nourished it felt after the treatment.

The key is selecting products for your personal hair type. This can be tricky when using a heavier conditioner or mask as you need to ensure the hair is hydrated/moisturised without feeling heavy, greasy or weighed down. The Honey and Oat Mask was a great success and felt like it was the perfect fit for me.

The barrel of the wand is long and flat, which creates a unique shape and a much more relaxed wave than a set spiral curl. I adore that Fearne Cotton-esque, lived-in beachy wave and the waving wand was an amazing choice to recreate that look.

Christie finished with a light spritz of the Label M Hairspray to provide a little movement and gently set the style without leaving it crunchy or tacky. The spray helps the hair structure to hold onto the style and can be applied before any final tweaking.

My experience of the salon was an overall joy and I don't feel like it will be too long until I darken their doors once again.

Edinburgh has an overwhelming choice when it comes to hair, which can be both blessing and curse. I was excited to venture a little off the map this time to discover somewhere new and will keep their number to hand if ever craving a "new do" or timely trim.

Flawless, friendly, personal service and cool, creative cuts that I can only imagine keeps their clients coming back for more. The Thomsons are definitely somewhat of a dream team.

If you are on a search to shake things up, let Austen & Co "style you pretty". I already know that they would love to hear from you.

How can I connect with Austen Thomson Hair?
Facebook: Austen Thomson Hair
Twitter: @AThomsonhair

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