Bowery Mural

My New Hair by Jones and Payne

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Before I set off on my trip to London last Wednesday I went onto the hotel website I was staying at. The Hoxton in Shoreditch. A lovely hotel by the way. More on that later. On the website is a Hoxton guide. I nosed about the many bars, restaurants, clothes shops, things to do and then... hairdressers. Those who know me know that i struggle when going to the hairdressers. I have only ever found one girl who cut my curly hair nice. I've only ever been happy with my colour a handful of times and it has been nearly one year (June 2010) since I had my hair cut or coloured. When i got it done i thought it was pretty nice but seeing an old photo from back last year I realised the blond highlights were quite unnatural looking and a bit too harsh for my complexion. We live and learn though.

My hair was long, away down my back and was catching on everything. By that I mean when i put a jacket on it'd get stuck in there. Sitting back on chairs felt like someone was tugging at it. And it was jut too long, although I did manage to figure out how to do a high bun! So I'd been thinking about a hair cut for oh at least 5 days or so. Now, since I've had a lot of hair disasters (drama) I'm a bit of a hairdresser phobic but after doing some research on the web about a salon just minutes from my hotel, I decided that now was as good a time as any.

I checked Twitter (like you do) and found them on there and boldly sent a tweet to Jones and Payne in Shoreditch. The next morning I was due to get the train at 10:30am and by 8:30 I had a reply saying I'd be best to call the salon for a chat. As I stood on the train platform I plucked up the courage and explained I was coming to London for a visit and would like a cut and colour if at all possible. I was given a consultation appointment for 5pm that night and felt better about the experience.


I arrived at Kings Cross about 3:45 and was at my hotel by 4:15. Pretty good going. The journey had been fairly relaxed and the sunshine when i arrived was a tonic. I headed around to the salon for 5. It was pretty impressive. Bright and modern with great vintage touches such as old chairs with great footrests, gilt gold mirrors and wooden floors. Small touches like a hook underneath the shelf/tables to hang your bag on. Talking of shelves. A good sturdy substantial shelf with enough room for magazines, mobile phone, drink, brushes and my glasses. I liked this as normally in other salons I've been left to hold a cup, magazine and my glasses as the shelf is nothing more than a 12 square inch of glass. A bonus were the staff I came across, all very friendly. Normally I get intimidated going into a 'fancy' salon let alone one on a huge city like London so to have someone say hi and smile is a nerve settler. I was offered a drink straight away to which i declined. I didn't think I'd be staying that long. A few minutes later Charlotte came up the stairs introduced herself and we chatted away. She asked me what I wanted. I explained I wanted rid of the harsh blond rooty mess. I'd also quite like my silver hairs(!) covered but not with an unnatural brown colour. And that I actually quite liked the grown out subtle colour hairdo's that seem to be popular just now. After a chat she knew what I was talking about but then i explained I was only here for a few days and wasn't sure if she'd have time to do it. She went to reception then came back to say she could do it there and then but that i could come back the following day for my cut. I agreed and was happy.

We went downstairs where she matched my hair up with the colour swatches and explained a bit more about what would be done and then went to mix the colours. I was brought a drink, still water, as it was very hot. hen Charlotte got started. I was a bit nervous but I remember thinking that I was confident she would give me what I wanted. After about half an hour the colour was on, some freehand paining on was done i think. Then I was left for another 20 minutes or so until the colour developed. Magazines and another drink was brought but to be honest the music that was playing was really very good. Think we were on a bit of late 90's early 2000's trip down memory lane with some very old thrown in. My feet were tapping. All around me people were coming and going and having their hair washed. Downstairs was where the wash basins were, behind a curtain of black string.

This is me waiting before any colour is applied. See me blonde grown out hair? eesh!

When my hair had suitable coloured I was taken to have it washed. Man I'd give anything to have a head massage like that at least once a week. Bonus klaxon alert number 24: the chairs were massage chairs and an excellent point to note here was that for the first time in a while i was comfortable leaning back against the sink to have my hair washed. You know that neck pain you sometimes get because the chair is at the wrong angle for you leaning back? didn't get it here. Comfy as anything.

She scrunched dried my hair and then began to curl it onto loose waves with skinny GHD's. It was so cool, even if i do say so myself and the colour?! Well it was perfect and exactly what I was looking for. She showed me the back via a mirror and I was so pleased with it. Charlotte was very lovely by the way. I paid my bill and left with a smile and swished it about all the way back to the hotel.

Swoosh, swoosh

The next day when i woke the curls were still there sorta and had worked their way into a kind beach style wave. I wandered about London and the Tate Gallery until it was time to head back for my hair cut. I arrived again just before 5 to another warm reception. There were a few more people waiting on appointments. I was taken after a few minutes and this time it would be Lewis who would cut my hair. Again after a little chat about what i did and didn't want we headed downstairs again where my hair (and those lovely loose waves) were washed and massaged again. My hair had never had a treat like this in a while so I soaked it all in. Upstairs Lewis worked magic and cut a couple inches off the back then layered it. He then curled it in a way I'd never have thought of and it ended up lovely. He showed me the back and the freshened up layers seemed to show off the coloured ends pretty well. I was a happy curly girl when I left again.

Overall I loved my experience at Jones and Payne. Right from when I tweeted and got a prompt reply through to walking out with my freshly finished hair. If only there was somewhere like that close to home. I have two stamps on my loyalty card now though so who knows, I might take a trip back again in a few months for a top up!

Huge thanks to Charlotte and Lewis, and to Stewart for fitting me in on my short trip to London. Excellent service. I hope to be back!

Angela x

In the area? hit Jones and Payne up on Facebook or Twitter.

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