My all-consuming hair obsession is something of a longstanding joke here at Sassy HQ, so when I was invited to trial a tailor-made hair treatment at the all-new Hollywood Hair, I didn’t waste any time in hightailing it over to Duddell Street!
Hollywood Hair is the new baby of award-winning Hong Kong uber-stylist (and former Sassy Award winner!) Rennie Fensham, following her departure from Glow with Ceri Silk. Occupying the space formerly taken by the now-retired Phillip George, the salon is huge by Hong Kong standards – light, bright and airy with plenty of funky decorative touches including a tank of very friendly fish.
But I was here to visit another of Hollywood Hair’s fab stylists – the legendary Lorena Severi (check out Rach’s previous review of her hair cutting wizardry here!). The lovely Lorena has coiffed the likes of Brad Pitt and Kate Moss in her time, so I figured my mop would definitely be in safe hands. Wasting no time, she eyed up my dry, chemically straightened tresses and declared that I needed a colour refresh, to bring my faded ‘do back to life. After the rich red-brown base colour had been rinsed, Lorena literally took a paintbrush to my hair and added in touches of balayage, highlighting like an artist touching up a canvas. This was fascinating to watch, and it added very subtle depth and movement to my newly shiny chestnut ‘do.
Then came the cut, performed with me standing up and with Lorena wielding a set of men’s clippers, which apparently gives the stylist far more freedom to manipulate the hair than traditional scissors. This was the only intimidating part of the process as I was alarmed that I might end up with an impromptu crop, but I’m pleased to report that Lorena gave me lightweight and defined layers with the length still very much intact. Phew!
With colour and cut taken care of, it was on to the main event. Lorena has painstakingly researched and developed a nourishing and repairing hair treatment based on the principles of Chinese tea and I was intrigued to find out more. Using mineral and plant extracts, the treatment is designed to work from the inside out, using a tea-based hair mask combined with an actual tea to take home and drink.
Again using a paintbrush, the pleasantly herbal-smelling concoction was painted on my head, which was then wrapped in a warm towel to let it penetrate for 15 minutes. I was also brought a pot of the hair-nourishing brew to drink; this had none of the bitterness of the Chinese herbal remedies I have tried in the past, tasting a little like weak jasmine tea.
With the 15 minutes up, it was time for a final rinse and blow dry, and then the grand reveal… and yep, I was impressed! My hair was softer than it has been in years (err… possibly since I started colouring it at the age of 16 – it’s a wonder I still have any hair at all!), and with a lovely shine that lasted for a few days afterwards, well past my third shampoo. The herbal scent was persistent but not overpowering (although my husband later commented that I smelled like an incense stick) and the balayage highlights really showcase the precision layers of the cut.
Aside from the fabulous cut and colour, I’d definitely opt for the tea treatment again if I had a special occasion to attend and wanted my mane in tip-top condition, or even post-straightening to offset some of the brutal chemical damage. Lorena is an amazing stylist, so I’d be more than happy to put myself in her hands, clippers and all, if I was planning a new look.
With prices around what you’d expect for a high-end Central salon, a visit to Hollywood Hair is definitely a hair investment rather than a cheap and cheerful chop. But unlike some salons, you really do get what you pay for here and this level of expertise, care and design is worth every cent.
Cut and blow dry starts from $780, colouring from $980 and treatments from $600. See full price list here.
Hollywood Hair, 23/F, No 1 Duddell Street, Central, Hong Kong, 2861 9830. Closed Sundays.