Salon Review: STIL Salon, Notting Hill, London
Review: Kathryn Lewsey
Opening its doors earlier this year, STIL is causing a stir in Notting Hill thanks to its tip-top services and chilled-out atmosphere.
I headed down on a Thursday evening to see what all the fuss was about and give my hair a much-needed revival.
Christel Lundqvist is the brains behind the salon and she took inspiration for STIL from her native Swiss background. Stylishly simple, the decor of the place has a Scandinavian feel with its minimalistic white walls and effortlessly cool interior.
STIL focuses on handpicking the right colour and style for the individual; it also prides itself on taking the time to create hair without the rush and hectic feel that some salons tend to have.
Stepping in on a Thursday afternoon, I received a warm welcome and drink, before being sat down with Christel, who was set to do my colour. Having bagged the British Hairdressing Awards’ British Colour Technician of the Year Award an impressive three times, I knew that I was in safe hands.
My balayage barnet had grown out a fair amount and the blonde was now a much darker tone. Christel explained how she used various aspects to determine what colour my hair should be, focusing on framing a hue that will match my complexion and eyes.
Due to my skin having golden undertones, she recommended a cooler blonde to my current one. Happy with the shade suggestion, I agreed and Christel got set to work. As I was still keen to keep my balayge look, Christel used the salon’s lumiere lights service, a similar method to balayage, that lightens locks using a freehand technique.
Demonstrating her expertise, Christel worked the colour through my strands with precision and skill, to ensure a natural, sun-kissed finish. During the process, we discussed the background behind the salon and how Christel had handpicked everything from the fashionable decor to her stellar team.
Once the dye had been applied, I was left to relax with a selection of mags and cup of green tea. Its calming atmosphere meant I could really unwind. In fact, it’s tranquil that the salon even offers meditation tapes for customers to listen to while sat in the hairdressing chair.
After around 25 minutes, Christel took me through to rinse off the dye and apply a gloss to my mane, which helped to revitalise and replenish its dull state. Adding further nourishment, a TIGI S Factor Mask was smothered over my hair to boost hydration and shine.
Taken back over to the snipping area, I met with Shaun McIntosh, the Style Director of the salon. Talking through my hair woes, I explained how I was happy with the length but wanted a healthy cut to get rid of any pesky split ends. Shaun demonstrated the exact amount he’d be cutting before going ahead – saving any hair dramas – and also redefined the shape to a flattering style for my face.
Finally, my freshly cut and coloured barnet was dried and styled. Adding a volume-boosting mousse, Shaun roughly blow-dried the strands, before creating volume and waves with his trusty tongs. I was then instructed to turn my head upside down while he blasted it with a hairdryer, which helped to loosen the curls for a tousled, beachy effect.
From its intimate, personal service, to its slick decor and super friendly staff, I really could not recommend STIL enough. Get yourself down there, pronto.
2A Chepstow Road
Notting Hill, London