We opt for a thoroughly vibrant start to the year with the help of the local hair experts at award-winning Quakers Friars salon Sean Hanna
Having toyed with the idea of ‘going red’ for a little while, and with my hair already edging towards the fierier end of the brunette spectrum thanks to a friend’s home dyeing expertise, I’d decided to go the whole hog and celebrate the prospect of the redhead coming into our emoji lexicon (yes, finally!) by joining the ranks and properly becoming one.
We were impressed with Sean Hanna after working with them on The Bristol Magazine autumn/winter fashion shoot last year, so I head into the Quakers Friars salon for a consultation with director Adam Vincent, who sits me down and helps me work out whether I fancy going for a ‘whisper’, ‘talk’ or ‘shout’ sort of look – it’s ‘talk’ for me, I reckon. Having been with Sean Hanna for 16 years (six of those in Bristol, after being put in charge of opening the company’s first South West branch), and with a career including a stint at Mayfair colour specialist Jo Hansford, I’m confident he knows exactly what he’s talking about and am more than happy to put my trust in him as he sets about mixing a couple of mahogany and berry shades to bring energy, vibrancy and texture to my barnet.
Meanwhile I peruse the superb menu of refreshments on offer – a wise collaboration with neighbouring Carluccio’s – which includes home-baked foccaccia with extra virgin oil and balsamic vinegar, prosciutto di Parma e grissini and my favourite, peach bellini – and settle down with some celeb-focussed reading material. It’s the Loreal Dia Richesse collection Adam is working with, and he explains while applying it how he also uses a product inside the colour called ‘Smartbond’ – designed to strengthen the bonds inside the hair and prevent any further damage to it.
After the designated cooking time is up – and I’m all caught up on the Hollywood goss and feeling suitably vacuous – Adam’s assistant takes me over to the somewhat trippy sink area at the back of the salon, complete with glowing sink pods that change colour as my hair is given a through rinse. It’s definitely the most psychedelic scrub I’ve had to date, and I have to say, I’m a fan of the experience – especially with the undulating-motion massage chairs added into the equation.
Psychedelic colour-changing sinks freshen up the shampoo experience
Back in the stylist’s chair, I’m given a treatment from Kerastase called Fusio-Dose Pixelist, designed to lock in the colour that’s been applied, and reflect natural light to enhance silkiness and shine (an optional extra). Then, it’s time for the head massage I always find to be the highlight of any salon trip, and this one is no exception, making use of one of those gadgets with the metal massage fingers – you know, the ones that glide up and down your scalp rather dreamily.
Adam returns to blow dry and style my hair, with plenty of body as requested, while I read up on his loyalty programme SH Inner Circle – whereby not only do you earn redeemable points per service or product purchased, but you can also earn some cheeky little bonuses, hear about the latest promotions first and get tips on managing your hair. It’s a slick and professional operation Adam has built, and it’s plain to see why the branch won the title of Bristol’s best hair salon at Made in Bristol’s inaugural lifestyle awards in 2016 – and for the first time in quite some time, I actually feel like I’m leaving the hairdressers’ with exactly what I asked for. It’s rarer than you’d think, right?
• Colour services start from £45 and blow dry services start from £20; seanhanna.com