For every hair problem it seems that Expat Hair Studio has a solution. Their range of hair services are up-to-date and extensive and include Keratin treatments, Hair Dream® nano bonds, highlights and balayage. The highly experienced team helmed by co-owners, Kat and Jacky, run a busy and friendly salon in trendy Joo Chiat based in the East. Trust us, this salon is worth a visit! We headed along to road-test a host of their services and can testify to the fact that they also serve up a mean coffee!
After chopping off ten inches of my hair earlier this year and sporting a short curly bob in my natural dark brown, I was, in all honesty, a bit bored with my look and wanted to add a hint of colour to liven up my face and complexion while growing my hair out.
Solution: Balayage highlights
My colourist, Julie, and I discussed where they would fall to flatter my face shape best. The colour was brushed onto the hair expertly, and left in wrapping under heat to develop. Next, it was on to the basin for a delightful wash with Kevin Murphy shampoo and conditioner (they have great, sulphate-free options for curly hair like mine.)
The end result:
The final look was just right and styled with beachy waves – it definitely gave me the refresh that I was after. I normally go for a slightly brighter ash blonde shade, but I like the way Julie’s option blended in more subtly with my natural locks. I was told that I could definitely choose to enhance or lighten the colour during a second round of balayage.
My problem is hair loss: not on the scalp, but all around, as my hair tends to break with the constant daily straightening. It leaves me with very thin weak hair which is hard to manage and frizzes at the sides with a mere hint of humidity.
Solution: Hairdreams®, nano bonds
These wonderful creations are the answer to my prayers. Gone are the hours of sitting in a chair as these beauties took my stylist, Kat, around 1 hour to do. This system is a revolution to hair extensions as they are attached by Laserbeamer nano technology that attaches them, five at a time, to very small strips of hair. If they are cared for properly, they can be worn for up to 6 months by brushing them with the special Hairdreams® brush and by using the Hairdreams® shampoo and conditioner. These are all suphate-free products that are gentle on both the Hairdreams® hair and my own – leaving it soft, shiny and glossy.
The end result:
I love the fullness of my hair now and it’s manageable and easy to look after. I feel it takes less time now to do my hair in the mornings as it has a lovely natural wave that doesn’t need too much attention. After a couple of days of wearing the creations, I could not feel them at all. Each bond is perfectly shaped and lies flat to the head making them super comfortable. I can’t even see them when I wear my hair up.
I’ve been finding that my highlights don’t last very long in this climate, and that over processing and the sun is leaving my hair straw-like.
Solution: Highlighting only the root part of the hair and Olaplex treatment.
Jacky, my colourist, explained that she was going to introduce another tone to brighten the colour up a little. I didn’t want to go any blonder, I explained, I just wanted a lift and the brassiness removed, without using a toner (my scalp is super sensitive and reacts badly to ammonia-based toners).
The foil process was quick and Jacky matched the colours perfectly making sure she touched up the roots, not adding more colour to the ends which makes the hair even drier. She also used Olaplex within the colour itself, to help the hair repair and rebuild from the inside and to make the colour work harder and last longer. After a gorgeous hair wash, with massage and more Olaplex, and a quick blow-dry to finish, it was job-done within 3 hours, which is good going for my long mane.
The end result:
I really like that my colour hasn’t changed too much but has been given a lift and the yellow/brassy tones have been neutralised. Jacky also managed to get those tricky wispy bits around the hairline, without it looking at all “stripy”! My hair feels in much better condition now too thanks to the Olaplex.
After 16 years in Singapore, I have learnt to embrace my curls, but it is still a constant battle with the frizz – or what I call my “teepee head.”
Solution: Keratherapy Keratin hair treatment.
Keratin is a protein – and a major component in your hair, skin and nails. This treatment places liquid keratin back into the hair shaft, making it smoother and straighter – but not dead straight like rebonding.
My stylist, Eason, asked me to set aside 4 hours for this treatment which is in 3 steps:
- Step 1: Wash with a special shampoo to open the cuticle, blow dry and brush out.
- Step 2: Apply the keratin section by tiny section – this takes around 45 minutes. Sit under heat for 30 minutes. Hot blow dry (brushing out straight) and irons. Rinse off excess product
- Step 3: Apply the sealing product to keep all the protein in the hair – 5 – 10 minutes
I have been blown away by how easy it is to style – I always pull my hair back but have been able to leave it out all day now, it sits back and does what it is asked to do which is amazing.
It feels like that “just been to the salon” feeling every day! I am a total convert. It is recommended to have the treatment and then colour your hair a week or two afterwards – I did it the other way around with no ill effects, but some blonde highlights can go a little orangey (you can use a toner to correct this if this happens). Do ask about the aftercare, as there is a bit of management post-treatment, but it’s worth it!
Head to our Style and Beauty pages for more inspiration for your locks.