6 April 2011

Jack Howard: Hair genius

Recently I was moaning about my hair on Twitter. There's nothing unusual in this, apart from this time someone listened, and that someone was hair genius Jack Howard.

Jack felt he could help my dry, frazzled hair, so I promptly turned up at his salon the following week and put my hair in his hands.

With over 25years experience in salons, Jack has spent the last 17years in America, working with many well known personalities from the world of news and politics. As a senior portfolio artist for L'Oreal Professional Jack has also taught across the United States.

These days Jack is the manager of Equus Hair. One of London's oldest salons, Equus was established in 1953, and a few of its clients look like they've been regulars since then. But this is a salon going through a transition, and Jack is at the heart of it, breathing new life into what was something of an institution.

So what did he make of my hair? Well for once I got an honest answer. Too many hairdressers have claimed that the right products, changing the hair dye used, using chemicals, not using chemicals etc would change the fact that my hair (in some sections) grows dry and frizzy. After a good rummage through my hair, Jack could see that it really does just grow in bad condition. And it always will, but with help, I could learn how to manage it.

We started with my colour. I'm a dark brunette, but these days my colour has started to look brassy within 3 weeks of colouring (maybe something to do with turning 40?) so Jack suggested some changes. Rather than a solid colour, like I usually have, Jack recommended two formulas - one at the front and one for the back, he then highlighted with foils and his 'secret formula' to control the brassiness.

At the same time I was also treated to a Knightsbridge manicure by Ines. My nails are painted in Essie Luxedo, which rocks so much I order some online the same evening.

I then met Jack's colleague Darren Eaton, a smoothing maestro, for a Semi Brocato Curl Interrupted treatment. Unlike other smoothing treatments, this contains none of the nasties associated with brazilian blow dries, in fact it's so gentle that Darren doesn't need to wear gloves.

After a quick trim, stylist Arturo (brooding and Spanish), blow dries and runs some special vibrating straighteners through my hair to seal in the treatment. I'm advised not to wash my hair for 48 hours, and to only use sulphate free shampoo.

So how was it?

Well the whole experience was glorious. The salon is fabulous, and despite some of the regular clientele literally dripping with gold and royal wedding invitations, it's very down to earth and comfortable. Jack and his team could not have made more of an effort to make me welcome. My hair is great. I'll admit it's a shade lighter than I'm used to, but I think Jack was nudging me in the direction of something a little more flattering for my age!

I've had loads of compliments, friends have wanted to know who did my hair. Even the hubby is impressed.

The Brocato has definitely improved the condition of my hair, it's softer, less frizzy and easier to manage. It's still not perfect, but it's manageability I'm trying to achieve not perfection. And this is only the four week version, I'm popping back next week for the more intensive version.

Jack Howard really knows hair. He understands it inside out, he's a master of colour with some secret formulas and tricks up his sleeve. He's not just a hairdresser, he's a hair genius. Plus he's a lovely guy!

Equua is not cheap. It's not even mid-range. But you do get what you pay for.

A tint starts at £99, the foils at £75 for a face frame.
Brocato Semi Curl Interrupted £120
Knightsbridge manicure £35

Oh and my manicure lasted for 6 days - a record for me!

Jack also specialises in Balayage, a method of highlighting that gives amazing natural results.

For more information visit the Equus websiteJack's own website or follow Jack at @jackhowarduk or Darren at @darreneatonHair

1 comment:

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