Tuesday 11 October 2016

To become... style: hair consultation at Anthony John Salons, Lichfield

My hair has been my 'thing' ever since my parents first let me get highlights. It's not particularly great hair, but I've used it as my way to express myself and over the years I have tried out various styles and colours and combinations. I'm known for always changing it up and for making dramatic changes; I just like experimenting and I'm always looking for the 'right' look for what I have in mind.

I've had bad experiences too over the years with hairdressers and salons and as such, I haven't stuck with anyone for all that long. There's a good hairdresser I've been to since going red and more vibrant, but it's not that convenient for me to get to.

I love the experience of a salon; having time to treat myself and take time away. It doesn't happen as much as it used to, B.C. (before child), but I would like to book in this time for me more often.

And I have found the perfect place.

Last week, I was invited to a special evening event at Anthony John Salons near Lichfield, for local bloggers and the chance to meet the team, tour the salon and pick up some style tips too.

Whilst I may change the colour and style quite frequently, I am pretty hopeless when it comes to styling my hair. I find it tricky to blowdry (I use a Babyliss rotating heated hairbrush which is pretty good at adding volume) and I still can't perfect my GHD curls. So, I was looking forward to a night of pampering (on a school night, no less) and picking up some top tips.

Here's my top 10 Anthony John Salons highlights and tips picked up from this fabulous event:

1. What a setting! 
The salon is set at Heart of the Country Shopping Village near Lichfield and what a setting it is. The salon is a giant converted barn and such a lovely space to be in; light, bright and relaxing. It was so nice to spend time here and anyone arriving for the first time is sure to let out a gasp.

2. A warm welcome
The team are incredibly friendly and when you arrive, you can take a seat in reception and help yourself to a drink from the fridge while you wait.

3. Experts at your fingertips
Tony, who owns the salon, really knows his stuff and the whole team are experts at what they do, as you might expect. There's a really nice ethos of looking after customers and giving them a personalised experience, and I could tell that they weren't into rushing people into and out of their salon chair. I learnt a lot more during my couple of hours here than I have from all my salon trips over the years - they're really willing to share tips and their expert knowledge with you.

4. Colour me beautiful
You can have a consultation with the team to find the perfect shade, or shades, for you based on your skin tone. I have a cool skin tone and the colour options are tailored so you can see what will work best for you. Apparently, the shade of red I currently am is well suited to my complexion and Tony spent some time with me talking to me about options for caring for, developing or changing my colour next time around.

5. Under the microscope
Anthony John Salon has a handy gadget that can take magnified images of your scalp and your hair to see what's really going on. I've never really given this much thought, and think most of us just think of ourselves as having 'dry', 'greasy' or 'fine' hair. But our hair needs can change over time and we need to look after our scalps too. I was also under the impression that dying my hair might be causing distress to my hair but the tool showed that damage wasn't too bad at all and that a one-off protein treatment would make a real difference, before switching to something else.

6. Top products
The salon uses K√©rastase products and there's a lot to choose from, so your stylist can tailor your whole hair treatment from cleansing and conditioning through to styling. I really liked finding out more about this range and picked up the VIP blowdry powder as something to take home and try out for myself.

7. Take a seat
The salon is really well decorated and the seats are very comfortable - important if you're going to be having your hair styled for a couple of hours. The at-sink chairs were particularly nice and made the head massage particularly enjoyable.

8. Space to relax
The salon has a quiet balcony area where you can go and relax during your treatment or while your colour develops. There's a big table, another complimentary drinks station including fresh coffee and a range of flavoured syrups and the latest magazines. Oh, and free WiFi too!

9. A good fit for you
Tony and his team are really approachable and make you feel right at home, from the moment you arrive. It's all about getting to know you and what you need from your hair. The price list is fair, the knowledge vast and during the event, it really came across how passionate they were and how nice it would be to come back time and time again to the salon.

Me with the main man, Tony, himself
10. Tip top experience!
The blogger event was really well put together, gave us the chance to mingle but also receive one-on-one advice to help with our individual hair desires and concerns. I took a piece of the salon home with me, in the form of a candle which they have specially made and smell diving burning around the salon. 

I've already started blowdrying my hair differently (I use the same hand to hold the brush on both sides of my head, and blowdry my fringe in the other direction, across my face, before bringing back the right way, to add volume and keep the style in place) and look forward to returning next time I need a hair transformation.

* Thank you to the team at Anthony John Salons for the invitation and great hair advice


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