8 May 2018

Rush on the Strand

Rush on The Strand

Despite their name, you won't receive a rush job at a Rush Hair salon. Which is just as well, because I paid for some questionable ten-minute haircuts in my teens, which led me to debate whether I might ever have faith in anybody with a set of clippers. Bonus tip: don't ask your mum to do it instead.

It had been four weeks since my previous haircut, at which stage my hair had begun to creep over my ears and down my neck. It's easy enough to hide, albeit it's a mess worth tidying up before my hair inevitably takes on the appearance of a mop. Upon arriving for my evening appointment at Rush on the Strand, I was greeted by the friendly salon team and directed to a chair by my stylist, Michelle. My eyes were drawn suddenly to the crystal chandelier suspended from an ornate, vaulted ceiling - a reminder of the salon's former life as the ticket hall of the Vaudeville Theatre next door.

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Following a brief consultation and complimentary refreshment, Michelle led me to a smaller room behind the main salon to wash my hair. (I hadn't immediately noticed the lack of sinks.) This separate room provides a more intimate and private space for shampooing, and has more distinctive d├ęcor than the clean white interior of the salon. While Michelle rinsed my hair free of suds, it certainly seemed a more relaxing environment, although I did ponder if Rush Hair might think to decorate the ceiling too, given customers have their heads tilted back for much of their time within the room.

Returning to my original seat, I was then treated to a scalp massage that very nearly sent me to sleep, followed by the haircut itself. Typically I ask for a short-back-and-sides with a trim on top, though I often give my stylist free rein over how it looks, because - let's face it - they know more about cutting my unruly hair than I do. Glancing in the mirror, I was slightly surprised the salon wasn't busier for a weekday evening, having clocked twenty-something stations, but only three customers. Michelle explained that particular night was one of their quieter periods, albeit they would be fully booked on Tuesdays, when the salon offers half-price colour services. That's a lot of ladies with tin foil heads.

After half an hour in the salon, including a second visit to the back room to rinse away those pesky trimmings, I was ready to reveal my new hair to the world. It may not be an eccentric hairdo, but all I really wanted was a tidy-up to make me look sharper in a shirt and tie (or roll-neck and blazer), not some mad hairstyle sculpted purely for the 'gram. That being said, I wouldn't oppose taking my hair in a wildly new direction, provided it doesn't significantly increase the likelihood of my going bald in the near future. Should any of you fancy doing the same, Rush Hair is offering 50% discount for first-time bookings.

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