Hersheson’s have been in the game since Daniel Hersheson, (owner of a warrant for services to royal hair) flung open the doors of their first salon in 1992. In 2006, Daniel was joined by his son Luke and the father/son duo now run two busy salons and a blow dry bar in Selfridges, Oxford Street.
I attend the newest addition to the family, the two-year-old Belgravia salon on a day so wet and windy that I arrive looking like the ultimate before picture; a red-faced. windswept, drowned rat.
The neutrally toned calming space, brightened with pops of their signature blue, makes it a fitting refuge from the biblical apocalypse raging outside. The reception staff are warm and sharply dressed in matching blue suits. At one end of the salon, the Notting Hill cafe Farm Girl serves delicious coffees, juices and healthy snacks. And it’s not just hair and healthy eating under this roof; downstairs there’s a brow bar and a nail salon. What more does a girl need? Well, facial acupuncture and spiritual therapy apparently. Did I mention they have their own product line? More on this later.
I’m all gowned up and furnished with a Farm Girl flat white when I’m greeted by James: a colour consultant who’s been with the firm for nearly twenty years and has created looks for the likes of Vogue, i-D and Pop magazine. ‘Your colour isn’t in bad shape’ he says – love a compliment. ‘But’ he says, ‘there’s a lot we can do to compliment your skin tone’. James prescribes a series of face-framing highlights that he promises will leave me looking younger, brighter, sparklier and ultimately… happier. Because if bad hair can make you miserable – hello, lockdown. Then it’s only in line with the laws of equilibrium that good hair can make you happy.
First James teases the hair, gently brushing it back towards the root in teeny-tiny strands, which he tells me, ‘will diffuse the colour’ and banish the possibility of ‘hard lines’. He places the highlights in the t-section zone – which will give the illusion of depth.
After 20 mins, James comes back to inspect and he’s pleased with how it’s lifted. He paints the toner by hand, ensuring it’s of higher concentration at the root. This, he tells me, ‘creates a shadow which makes the tips look brighter’ and ultimately sparklier/shinier/happier etc. etc.
Next, I’m given a bouncy blow dry by Melina and introduced to some of Hersheson’s products – namely, their new blue hair dryer which really gives the Dyson a run for its money.
I’m thrilled with the colour. Not only are my mousey roots seamlessly blended but my creamy blonde looks soft and cared for, and you really can see the light bouncing off those sparkly tips. As I depart, the sun comes out. I leave feeling less like a wet rodent and more like Claudia Scjhiffer. I am sparklier, happier and, perhaps, it’s not just my tresses that have been enlightened.
Colour services with James Samuel start at £290
8A W Halkin St, London SW1X 8JE