Be blown away

Be blown away

Beauty salon decor has taken a hairy turn – in a good way. A new breed of hair and grooming outfits here is eschewing the usual mood lighting and mirrored interiors for quirkier concepts.

In hipster enclave Ann Siang Hill, traditional English barbershop Truefitt & Hill, which opened two months ago, is fitted out like a gentlemen’s club.

Singapore salons that will blow you away

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    Where: 57 Eng Hoon Street, 01-86

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    open: 10am to 9pm daily

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    Where: 01-32 The Watermark, Robertson Quay, 7 Rodyk Street

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    open: 10.30am to 9.30pm (Mondays to Thursdays), 10am to 9.30pm (Fridays and Saturdays), 10am to 8.30pm (Sundays)

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    So you have spent $39 getting your mane glossy and tousled, in a blowout called The Great Gats-Beach, at Prep. But the thought of stepping outside, where the rain or humidity threatens to ruin your do, now fills you with dread.

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    Never fear, the women behind this one-month-old outfit at Mandarin Gallery have thought of it all.

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    The salon sells specially designed merchandise, such as terry cloth-lined shower caps and umbrellas to protect your hairstyle. There are also cloth tote bags in three designs.

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    From quirky names for blowouts to a semi-hidden washing pod for privacy to a select music playlist, every detail in this Asylum-designed salon is well chosen.

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    From quirky names for blowouts to a semi-hidden washing pod for privacy to a select music playlist, every detail in this Asylum-designed salon is well chosen.

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    The venture was started by secondary school friends Jacelyn Soh, Yishi Lian Teh and Jacqueline Chang, all 27, who met at Raffles Girls' Secondary School.

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    Ms Lian and Ms Soh left their investment banking jobs last June while MsChang, who was in London, gave up her business development job in the lifestyle and F&B industry there and returned home in December to start the business.

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    The trio took classes at a hair salon chain to understand what kind of products and hairstyles they should use and create.

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    It was important that they get the design right, rather than recreate a common look familiar in most salons here.

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    Ms Chang says of the concept:

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    Drawing on their experience as customers, they ensured that their salon had space for groups of girlfriends to stay together - hence a communal seating area where they can get their hair done together.

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    Keeping to the chilled-out feel, the owners chose white, mint green and oak-wood panelling for the whole theme - something that would please both sexes instead of being overtly feminine.

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    Keeping to the chilled-out feel, the owners chose white, mint green and oak-wood panelling for the whole theme - something that would please both sexes instead of being overtly feminine.

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    Another design feature that is sure to have passers-by doing a double take: an art installation of sorts, in the window. Five hairdryers seemingly blow to topple a vase.

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    Where: 03-34 Mandarin Gallery, 333A Orchard Road,

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    tel: 6732-6123

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    open: 10.30am to 9.30pm (Mondays to Thursdays), 10am to 9.30pm (Fridays and Saturdays), 10am to 8.30pm (Sundays)

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    open: 10am to 9pm

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At six-month-old hair salon Blow+Bar in Rodyk Street, customers can sip their choice of tipple and tinker away on iPads while their tresses are washed.

The latest kid on the block, Prep in Mandarin Gallery, offers blowouts – a concept that is popular in America. Stylists there only blow, dry and set hair based on one of five styles chosen by the customer.

Prep’s owners engaged well-known creative agency, Asylum, to create a cosy vibe with a mint green theme and wood panelling. A custom-designed styling area seats four, so customers in groups can indulge in girl talk as they glam up.

Prep, which opened last month, already draws regular customers such as Ms Peggy Choi, who goes there once a week to get her hair done.

The owner of business investment start-up The Straits Network, who declines to reveal her age, says: “Most hair salons have too many lights, too much noise and a lot of other things going on at the same time.

“At Prep, it just feels so good, especially when you go on the weekend. It’s a bit of pampering, a treat for yourself.”

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