My visit to Ishi Salon for a hair makeover!

During the hair, beauty and makeup networking event I attended a few weeks past, I spoke to Isla, Creative Director at Ishi Salon about a change and so I took the plunge and made an appointment.

During the previous networking event, we got a little bit of background from Paul, one of the co-owners, about how he and Chris, his business partner, started the first salon on Roseneath Street in Marchmont. The business is now thriving and has been one of The Scotsman’s Salon of the Year award finalists in 2014 and 2015. They are also set to be styling hair on Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model!

The staff is very friendly to chat with and easy-going. I’ve had a hard time finding a good hairdresser since I came to Edinburgh 7 years ago. To give you a bit of back story, the hairdresser I went to in Hong Kong had been cutting and styling my hair for 8 years. For the last 3 years, I’d been letting my hair grow so it could be styled for our wedding day. It was starting to become a nuisance because it was that long. Honestly, by the time I made an appointment, the longest part reached my lower back.

My hair at its longest

Sometimes when I cooked, my hair got singed from the gas fire, I’ve had my hair get caught under my scarf, bag handles when I sling it over my shoulder or when I’m trying to get something out of my bag while sitting on the bus. Having to try to work out where it got trapped so I could free it was a nightmare. Don’t even get me started on how many times the OH or the kitties have put weight in the masses when I tried to go to bed or get up for work!

Craig was great at listening to what I wanted (just wanted it cut short and a slightly lighter ombré applied) and talked me through the whole process. I honestly didn’t much of an idea of exactly what I wanted. I knew I wanted to keep the ombré colour, I wanted the length hacked off and my fringe trimmed, but other than that I left it in his capable hands. Before long, we were ready to get started.

Before getting it cut

We had a chat about donating my hair to charity as well. I heard about charities that took hair donations to make real hair wigs for children who had cancer, but I wasn’t aware there was one in the UK. Of course, I could hardly refuse, when the length would otherwise be thrown in the bin!

My donation to children who have lost their hair due to cancer treatments

To be honest, this was probably the longest I’ve ever had my hair and the most I’ve ever had chopped off, so it was entirely possible that on previous occasions it just wasn’t long enough to donate (the shortest layer must be a minimum of 7 inches or 17cm). Luckily mine was long enough, otherwise I was quite happy to have my hair cut a wee bit shorter just so it would meet the requirements. I got nosy and took out my measuring tape when I got home and surprisingly, the longest part was 40cm in length!

After getting my ponytail lopped off, Craig got to work dying my hair ombré. The last time I got my hair the colour you see in the ‘Before’ photo, I dyed it myself the first time at home and had it dyed again in a salon earlier this year. The hair that Craig had to work with was all my natural hair colour and with just one application managed to go almost blonde! After about 30 minutes of leaving the dye in to work its magic, it was time to wash it out. Did I mention that Ishi is the only salon to offer and use Bumble & Bumble products? My hair was washed with this fabulous smelling shampoo that I had to ask Craig what he was using. He said because my hair was so healthy, I only needed a mild shampoo so he used the B&B Seaweed Shampoo on my new hair.

After my hair was washed, toner was used to dampen the colour a bit to a more caramel/light brown tone before my hair and fringe were shaped properly.

This is the end result:

My cut and dye ombré hair

I’m really pleased with how it’s turned out. I didn’t really give Craig too much detail on the exact colour I wanted. When we discussed it, I agreed that I would like it to be a similar colour to what I already had or slightly lighter, but somehow we managed to get the perfect shade I was going for. The length is also perfect: long enough for me to tie up when going to Combat and Pump, but short enough that I don’t have to worry about getting it singed while making dinner!

View from the front

A few days before my appointment, I’d seen supermodel Alessandra Ambrosio’s blog post about her new hair do. I really liked the length and because I have a long face like hers, wondered whether the length would also suit me. Little did I know, until Craig mentioned it, that the midi-length is very ‘in’ right now so I’m bang on trend without trying.

Here’s to midi-length hair! Long enough to still feel like a woman, but short enough to be manageable and chic at the same time! It’s definitely a welcome change and I couldn’t be happier with Craig’s great work!

I liked the shampoo so much that I couldn’t leave without getting myself a bottle! It smells refreshing, kind of like the sea, without being overpowering with its fragrance.

I would get the matching conditioner, but I bought a massive bottle of conditioner from Tesco a while ago because it was on sale. It takes me a while to get through conditioner compared to shampoo as I only use it on the dyed ends of my hair. It has taken some getting used to though, using less conditioner with much shorter hair!

If you’re interested in donating your hair towards providing real hair wigs to little boys and girls that have lost their hair due to cancer treatment, you can find out more about the requirements from Little Princess Trust.

Isla and Craig work at the Ishi Salon can be found on 113 Hanover Street, EH2 1DJ. You can make an appointment with either of them by phoning 0131 225 22520131 225 2252.


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