Situated in the heart of central on Cochrane Street, you have probably passed The Strand hundreds of times without realising it. However, it may have caught your eye with its stylish exterior, which makes it stand out from the other surrounding buildings. Offering a range of luxurious spa and hair treatments, The Strand is situated on four levels, one for ladies, one for the gentlemen and one for spa treatments. Its light and airy top floor otherwise known as ‘The Lounge’ also provides the perfect location for private parties or product launches. Each floor is sleek and serene in design, offering a comfortable yet elegant setting for pampering. The men’s salon, with its barbershop-style chairs and sinks built into the counter, offers refined comfort and convenience, while the women’s floor is spacious and relaxed. The Strand is home to an expert line up of therapists and stylists but also plays host to internationally renowned stylists. During my visit, I had the pleasure of meeting award-winning Australian stylist Luke Reynolds for a Friday night cut and blow dry. Having enjoyed a salon tour and introduction from Strand Director Beverley Cappleman, I was presented with a glass of bubbles and was then ready for a divine spruce-up before my night out. As I expected Luke was extremely warm and friendly, and despite styling celebrities and catwalk models, he was happy to style me on the safer side of fabulous! After a short review, Luke told me my layers needed some attention, so he recommended taking a healthy chunk off the length and topping the look off with a sweeping fringe. Perfect! With my new style selected, it was time to get shampooed and enjoy a relaxing head massage. Feeling clean and refreshed, I was ready for my transformation. Luke quickly got to work on my locks, while telling me all about his experiences at Australian Fashion Week, how he got into styling hair and the famous people he has groomed including Georgia Jagger, whom we both adore. With my hair type erring slightly on the fine side (note the use of ‘fine,’ not ‘thin’!), Luke was determined to give my hair some much needed vavavoom, while also advising on products and treatments to help boost my barnet volume. For the other fine-haired ladies amongst you, Luke’s top tips included getting to grips with a round brush or hair straighteners to add a few curls, investing in a few foil highlights which help swell hair molecules by adding body, and let’s not forget a few hair extensions could also go a long way. Having trained in Australia at Peter Reynolds Hair Studio, Newcastle and Tognini’s Hair Skin Body, Queensland, Luke is a big believer in using the traditional styling methods without defaulting to the more modern heated tongs, straighteners and heavy amounts of product. I was therefore pretty impressed when Luke curled a selection of round hairbrushes into my hair to give it the all-important boost. Then to the fringe, where Luke showed me how to dry it to perfection with another round brush. With a little tonging to give me a few curls and some delicious smelling hair spray (The Strand prides itself on using sustainable product brand Davines NaturalTech featuring raw natural ingredients), my hair was looking well and truly groomed and full of bounce. Luke purposely pumped up the volume to ensure my hair would not drop during my night out, and true to his word it did not. It was the perfect Friday night pick me up for me and my hair!
A shampoo, blow dry and setting at The Strand starts from $250 for short hair and $350 for long hair with a Stylist and $500 for short hair and $600 for long hair with a Creative Director. A shampoo and dress up for special occasions start from $450 with a Stylist and $800 for a Creative Director. Luke Reynolds’ fees start from $2500 for women and $1500 for men and his next stint at the Strand will be from 11 – 17 April – NOW!