Salon Review: Sassoon, Mayfair, London
Review: Jamie Roberts
Nestled in the beautiful South Molton Street, merely a short stroll from Regent Street and Oxford Street, Vidal Sassoon offers a perfect chic and contemporary spot for pampering and a getaway from the hustle and bustle of the shopping district. Located in the aptly named ‘lanes of Mayfair’, the salon is surrounded by a gorgeous cluster of luxury retailers and independent boutiques.
Having visited a few days before my appointment for a patch test, dead-set on going more natural with balayage, I was introduced to the fabulous senior colourist Neville who put his 15year experience with Sassoon to good use, spending time looking at pictures with me and discussing colour options. He agreed that my natural dark blonde hair is a great colour, having seen the inch of regrowth beneath my bleached up tresses. Years of half head highlights has left my hair block blonde, so flat and porous and crying out for some depth and condition. Neville explained that to create the balayage look would require a cool based brunette, which on my hair would quickly fade to reveal a patchy, khaki hue. He instead advised I get a full head of gentle highlights to eliminate the dark undergrowth and unsightly roots, then tone the whole head to a more natural vanilla tone.
Having heeded advice I returned for my appointment four days later and was greeted warmly with a tea and biscuit, a very chatty Neville and was soon gowned up for the foiling process to begin. The highlights took around two hours to complete, and were expertly done whilst we gossiped about our favourite things to come out of the nineties (Kate Moss, grunge, Trainspotters…not so keen on tiger stripe highlights mind you!) I happily sat sipping my tea (I do wish I’d been offered a glass of something stronger!) under the heater until my foils were removed in three stages, from first applied to last. Over at the most comfortable basin I’ve ever experienced my hair was washed, the toner applied, followed by an intense conditioning treatment and another soothing wash. The salon assistants were fabulous, from filling the colour pots, replacing foils and washing hair, they seemed to pop up whenever they were needed and the whole process ran like clockwork!
Next I was handed to the care of the lovely senior stylist Jan who had introduced himself prior to my colour, so we were already in agreement as to my chosen finish. A gentle brush through of Sassoon Diamond Polish Serum made my highlights shine, and he kept my length whilst ensuring a good trim up of my damaged ends. Finishing up with a body boosting blow-dry and tonged ends for a natural wave, I was salon ready to face the shops! I may not have got my balayage, but if I’m honest I’m always going to be a blonde, and as Neville said, the more natural base will allow me to grow out the highlights gradually.
I was ready to bounce my way down towards Regent Street for a coffee and a spot of shopping, until the heavens opened and people walked into the salon looking like they’d just done a length of a swimming pool! Jan offered me a coffee and the chance to keep dry until the rain subsided so I didn’t spoil my new do. The whole atmosphere of the place left me feeling like I was in an independent salon, and goes to show how Sassoon is such a global success story!