Going to the Hair Salon
No travel photos or big adventures this time. This one is for my girls (or boys!) out there, who like talking about hair care.
Everyone needs a haircut now and again and it’s basic needs like this that you might not think of to be complicated…unless you’re in a foreign country. Especially when you don’t know the language. Well, after a few successful basic trims in Korea at various places, I decided that before the holidays, I would get a trim AND try a keratin hair treatment. I was feeling brave. What is a keratin treatment? In short, it is a (healthy) chemical process that smooths and shines frizz. It gives your hair vitamins and nutrients and makes it stronger! I had to try it.
In the past, I had done a little bit of research on where people speak at least a little English and just walked in to see if they could take me. This time, I actually used the Korean app “KakaoTalk” — which is what everyone uses to chat, play games, and apparently schedule appointments — to make a reservation! The salon, Stay Hair, was right next to our apartment so the convenience was unarguably a big factor in my choosing it, but with the high rating and decent price, it was a no-brainer.
I walked in and a woman was attending to another customer. She looked at me with a bit of hesitation since I was a foreigner so I assumed she knew little English. Fortunately, I made a note in my phone of everything I could think of to translate, and included a picture of what I wanted. I was just getting a basic trim with some layers. But what I was really excited about was the keratin treatment I was getting. The process went like this:
1) My hair was washed and partially blow dried.
2) A keratin product was painted on my hair and then combed and massaged through.
3) I was offered tea which also came with a cookie.
4) I waited for 10 minutes under a fancy dryer.
5) A different woman tended to me to rinse and partially blow dry my hair.
6) The next product was sprayed into my hair and combed through.
7) Partial blow dry.
8) The next product was applied and combed through.
9) THEN my hair was wrapped with plastic wrap and I waited about 15 minutes under a fancy shmancy hot air device that spun around my head.
10) My hair was rinsed a third time and the keratin treatment was complete!
To finish up my appointment, she trimmed my hair, both women blow dried my hair at the same time (they are all about efficiency) and then she styled it. The style, in my opinion, was a very Korean style. Not how I would normally do it, but when in Korea…so I let it be for the day. And voilà! My hair was a new woman!
The whole appointment took about 1.5 hours and although I couldn’t converse with the woman tending to my hair, it was quite relaxing to sit in silence and to be (what I consider) “pampered”. As I got up to pay, there was some miscommunication, but that was quickly resolved. The woman wrote on a napkin something similar to “Do you enjoy the salon today?” I nodded and said “yes, very good” and gave her a thumbs up. Everyone smiled and waved goodbye as I left, making it feel like a very warm and comfy place. ❤️