Up until last week, I can honestly say that I never really had a full hair makeover. I would usually give myself drastic hair cuts or get my hair treated. I even tried experimenting with with hair colour by dyeing my bangs blue or pink (Don’t judge. I was a . But all these happened one at a time – never all at once. I also never coloured my hair in full.
I guess I’ve always been comfortable with my dark brown curls. Brunette through and through here! 😉 It even took a while for me to actually consider highlights!
I love my curls a lot and I’ve always been very particular about who touched my hair. In Manila, there was only one person I’d go to for a hair cut. This is because – being curly haired and all – I cannot afford a bad hair cut. I’ve been told before that dealing with curls is a lot harder than dealing with straight hair. My curls which are composed of big rings and waves, look best when layered and layering curls can be quite a task.
I haven’t gotten a hair cut since moving to Malaysia (don’t judge!) mainly because I just didn’t know who I can trust to give me layers that won’t leave me looking like a long-haired poodle. By the time we hit June of this year, my layers which I got exactly a year ago was just all over the place, my curls weren’t swirling to their proper rings anymore.
So when I got the invitation to go to meet Andy Ho (!!) himself for a haircut, I was over the moon. Andy Ho is a name that you hear a lot here in KL – especially in the beauty scene. With two decades of experience plus his own, in-born talent, Andy has become synonymous to classy hair styling here in Malaysia.
I went to his salon – Andy Ho Haute Coiffure – in Pavilion, one of KL’s nicest malls, and was immediately greeted by Andy and his wife Florence. This is my second time here in their salon (I did the La Biosthetique scalp treatment with them last month) and I’ve noticed how hands on they are with their business – which is always a great thing. I hate going to a salon of a known hairstylist only to end up with a botched cut done by his staff who admitted he wasn’t thoroughly trained and supervised by his boss before being allowed to touch the clients’ hair.
You can tell right away that Andy Ho is a professional. He looked at my hair, touched it a bit, and he knew exactly what to do. He told me he will give me long layers to compliment my hair’s current length. It’s like he was reading my mind! I actually wanted to keep the length this time after getting my curls cut short since 2012.
He told me my current length suits me but he will give me a ‘re-style which I would surely love.
Andy cuts with precision, taking everything into detail – how my hair would fall and frame my angular face, how it would look if I decide to part my hair in the middle or the side.
He takes his time without being slow and makes sure every snip of his scissors cuts the strands in a perfect angle.
After the cut, Andy announced that he will colour my hair. Normally, that would have sent me running and calling for my mother as I’ve always been apprehensive with getting a full-on colour change. It’s just unfamiliar territory and it screams of maintenance which I am normally not that fond of.
However, Andy got me to relax the moment I sat on that chair in his salon. While extremely professional, I can honestly say that he is friendly. You feel that he is actually interested with his clients and in making them feel comfortable while they are in his salon – something I really appreciate. I told him my reservations about getting a hair cut after leaving Manila but those reservations completely left me by the time he told me he would give me a totally new look.
Getting that new look meant having some parts of my hair bleached first.
Not my most flattering photo, I admit. But that look is of pure excitement, I tell you.
I didn’t even feel scared during the process despite the drastic change that was coming – only excitement. I guess it’s because I felt like I was surrounded by friends. Andy’s staff is really friendly and welcoming just like their boss. Which is quite surprising for me, actually since the salon is so high end. You’d expect snooty people coming in the salon and equally snooty people cutting your hair while you’re surrounded with immaculately white walls and European decor. But not here, thank goodness. They’re not intimidating at all.
After the bleach, I came out looking like this. Wow. That’s a lot of blonde and a stark contrast! But Andy assured me that I shouldn’t worry as we were only half-way done.
He’s going to be mixing the colour to dye my whole head of hair. When I asked what colour it would be, he told me that it was going to be a surprise. I got giddy. Seriously. For the first time in my life, I’m letting someone else experiment with my hair and I don’t mind. They also added a softening treatment to my hair just so the colour won’t dry the strands out too much.
In the end, I came out looking like this:
My hair was blow dried straight with soft waves towards the ends. He gave me ombre highlights which is something that I often see among Hollywood celebrities. I think I just died and went to hair heaven.
Oh, and I was – BRONDE! Not a typo, guys. I totally googled and it’s pretty much spot on. I found myself in the middle of being a Brunette and a Blonde. I’m still me only with a little extra! 😉
I know being fully-blonde is something I won’t be able to rock even though I’m a huge Marilyn Monroe fan. When it comes to hair, I’m more of an Audrey Hepburn. 😉
However, Andy got me to try something that is quite edgy for me – something that wasn’t in my comfort zone – without going over board. He did take the time to ask me about my background – what am I doing in Malaysia, if I’m working, etc. He will really tailor your hair to your personality.
Being married to a diplomat, I just can’t imagine having a blue fringe again like I did in college or colouring my hair in full-on red or any other crazy colour. Come to think of it, even if Alvin was not a diplomat, I don’t think I would go for crazy colours even if they are all the rage for young Asian girls here in Malaysia.
I guess I’m just really over it now that I’m older and a lot more mature (I hope! Haha!). I guess marriage does that to you. Been there, done that. I want a look that shows my personality and will still allow people around me to take me seriously. I like classier looks that are not boring at all and with still a bit of an edge. Andy totally nailed it! I’ve been getting nothing but compliments because of my hair!
Sitting in the salon from 2:30 in the afternoon until 6:30 in the evening was totally worth it! And it’s not like I was bored. Everyone in the salon was so friendly, I just talked my afternoon away. Oh, and I did get some reading in between too.
Of course, when I got home, I decided to take more photos. Talk about being narcissistic but Andy did such a great job!
Notice how the hair falls nicely and frames my face? The colour even made my European features (thanks, Dad!) pop! And you know how some hair cuts only look perfect at the salon and when you try to style your hair the normal way it just won’t look that good? Andy’s work is definitely not like that.
I’ve been rocking this style for a week now and I just keep loving it even more. I also got my brows lightened to match the hair. 😀
I loved the service at Andy Ho so much, I’m already thinking of going back in August, before hubby and I fly to Europe and visit my family. Maybe for a bit of treatment to get it ready for travelling or a touch up (my hair grows insanely fast!).
Can’t wait to bring this new hair and technically new me back to Europe and take a LOT of photos. My family will be so surprised! Well, they already saw it on social media but I think this will still have a lot of that jaw-dropping effect when they see it in person.
If you’re ever in KL and you find yourself with the same dilemma of not knowing where to go for a hair cut, trust me – go to Andy Ho Haute Coiffure. Thank me later.