[Hong Kong] Asian Balayage by Hair Dr. Steve Mather
Updated: Sep 27, 2019
*Please excuse the terrible quality of the photos! They were all taken with my iPhone. If you're absolutely shitting yourself about taking the plunge and dyeing your hair like I was a few months before, this is the post to read for that extra boost of confidence! ;)*
When the 'balayage' hair trend started dominating the beauty scene, I remember thinking that if ever I were to dye my hair, that's exactly how I'd want it to look. Balayage is a unique colouring technique that can differ from stylist to stylist, but in essence, is meant to create soft, sun-kissed highlights that are applied by a special freehand technique without using foils. I kind of think of it like facial contouring, but for your hair. It creates this instant 3D effect, lifting and invigorating drab, heavy-looking manes and enhancing overall movement. So no, definitely not the same as a dip-dye - balayage requires a more particular set of skills, meaning it's harder to come across a stylist who is confident enough to take on it.
I actually had my very first treatment in London when I lived there for graduate school, and loved it. The technique had already advanced and flourished there, but I was dismayed to know it hadn't in Asia upon my return home to HK. It came time for a touch-up, and I did a ton of research online. Ended up deciding on the Jean Louis David salon and went in for an appointment. Steve Mather was the the resident colourist/Balayage specialist there at the time, and he knew exactly what I wanted ("something noticeable...but not too light...but not that weird in-between copper colour...but elegant..."). It turned out really great. He's moved on from JLD since then, so of course given that I don't trust any other human with my hair when it comes to colouring, he's still my go-to stylist wherever he goes.
Steve is currently stationed at the Island Shangri-La Salon for the time being, but do confirm the location with him when making a booking. Ladies (or gents), if you're feeling anxious about dyeing your hair for the first time, definitely book in a session with Steve! See contact details at the bottom of the post.
The highlight is applied free-hand on the appropriate strands of hair, covered in saran wrap, and heated for a few minutes (below). Takes around half an hour.
Special toner is added to create the ashy look so it prevents that copper colour I so fear. Shampoo, blow dry, & voila. LOOK AT THAT CASCADING PERFECTION. Like I know it's my own hair, but daaaaaym.
You can see how the look of the balayage transforms according to the light. The actual highlight runs higher up into the hair, and it's clearer here than in the previous pic.
Every basic girl's best friend = the Snapchat dog filter. Better look at the Balayage a la selfie.
Steve Mather - Hair Doctor - Booking Info
Tel/WhatsApp: +852 5166 4843
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