Image

A soft summer style

In July the view into the street from the salon in Totnes gets greener and the humidity inside rises. We regularly open one or both doors to keep cool from the dryers and the general noisy hubbub. I’ve recently been listening to a shared playlist of jazz and blues in the salon and there’s a good inclusive vibe while we work, meet, greet and get coffee for our customers.

Everyone is about to go on holiday or is planning a break and we all start to thrive on the good feelings of July and feeling good about the holidays. The styles become more beachy, the blow drying is more relaxed. There is a lot less formality to the finish look that customers require for their summer parties, weddings and holidays. Suddenly we all want beach heads – tousled curls, or we want to look like we just left the bed and pulled on a t-shirt and jeans. Two familiar requests:

 “Just finger dry …don’t use any product” 

Image

Modulation Gel from Keune So Pure

Now that we use Keune So Pure, we can really get down to producing the natural look our clients desire and also design the cut and blow dry individually to suit the occasion. Texture Spray works a treat on long and short hair after straightening or curling, and the ever popular Moroccan Argon Oil is popular on blonde and coloured hair, leaving a great healthy shine and vibrancy.

I’ve really started working well with the Modulation Gel and also the Exfoliating Treatment, getting really great results with these two very different products. Modulation Gel has a good firm hold but hair stays soft if you blow dry it. You get a textured look if you leave it in to dry naturally. It’s not for the shy retiring kind of style – it’s got the added liveliness needed to texturize fine hair with a bit of volume. So, why not try it yourself for your easy holiday style!

Advertisements
Welcome to Amsterdam

It was a welcoming 21 degrees in Amsterdam. I sat outside in my shirtsleeves with a glass of wine by the canal with other salon owners from UK who had come together to visit Keune.

I recently spent a weekend in Amsterdam, courtesy of my products suppliers and Keune. Last year at Gill Goddard Hair we took a pretty massive step and changed our product range to So Pure from Keune. It was a great move and this trip has confirmed why I think that Keune is absolutely right for us and our customers.

This was not going to be my first visit to Amsterdam so I was excited in a really relaxed way. I am one of those people who like travelling a lot, but I get lost. I’m missing some pretty vital navigating and directional equipment. I do however know how to read the positive signs of a good company or organisation.  All the signs from the Keune family (and I know now why they call themselves a family) are great.

I love the Keune brochures, pictures and really love the products. So I imagined the weekend with them would be a positive and enhancing experience. It was!

Meeting (Mr) Keune

The Keune Factory

The Keune Factory

Our bus drew up to the Keune factory, which seems to double as a modernist Statement with a staircase entrance hall complete with show car, office, pristine canteen and eating area, lecture theatres and an amazing hair salon set up for cut, colour hair collections, photography and modelling.

Editha!

Editha!

At the entrance we met Editha, Star of the Show – the Educator come Hostess. She’s amazing, intelligent, quick witted, performic, informal and chatty. She guided us through the Keune product portfolio and collections like a pro public speaker. This dynamic approach to information and education is something I really appreciate. The enthusiasm is catching!

Me and Mr Keune

Me and Mr Keune!

We sat and watched a presentation about the company – from its beginning to its flourishing contemporary place in the global hair market. Even more amazing than the history is that for the involvement of the Keune family. The grandson of the founder, Mr George Keune has a house attached to the factory and is available for the staff 24/7 or so it seems. A strong dedication to the business and its evolution.

Demos

Demos at Keune

Two hair educators appeared on stage and we are treated to cut and colour processes. Then it was time for lunch. Back down in the canteen I could hardly believe how good the food was – obviously cooked from scratch and really healthy!

Highlights and dizzy heights 

Hearing all about the Keune processes

Hearing all about the Keune processes

Back to our itinerary and for me it was the highlight of the trip: a tour around the factory. It sounds dead boring but this is no ordinary factory. For a start the Keune company employs 17 people with learning difficulties who work five days a week on light manual labour. They know everybody and everybody knows them.

Smelling the delicious Keune products

Smelling the delicious Keune products

Editha explains the many processes that will eventually end up in our salons as tubes of colour, perm, shampoo and conditioner. Thousands of tubes and bottles of product are produced each day and the factory workers do shifts to meet the demand. We visit a section where the essential oils are stored in a funny dry airless way where if we stay too long we will start talking with a funny voice.

Up high with Keune

Up high with Keune

We visit the lab where scientists are constantly testing and evolving this natural range of products. We visit an area across the road similar to the loading bays in Ikea Bristol. Before I know it I’m up in the ceiling in a fork-lift truck, four times the height of my house with a strange man at the controls!

One microphone, a table-top and a whole lot of food

After our return to the hotel and many, many photographs and documentation notes, we changed for the evening meal at an amazing karaoke bar. Again no ordinary karaoke or food!

The Dutch are fab – they know how to make an evening meal really special. All the waiters are singers and the maître d’ welcomes our party of British people to the table by announcing an “eighties” hits night.

Amsterdam meal

Delicious food, great company

They began a tradition of shared food. Every four places along the table there is a delicious tapas starter. Then spaghetti fongoli followed by Ice cream and cake dessert. They even catered for gluten-free guests, cooking a special meal. Every 15 minutes a waiter sings with a microphone – and it’s not the champagne flowing – they really are excellent singers.

By the end of the evening the salon owners all know each other really well and some of us have even danced on the tables to roars of delight from the other guests!

Coming home with a thank you

In the morning I found a café of the beaten track where a Dutch man cooked us double eggs and bacon with strong coffee. We all sat in companionable silence. I reviewed my trip and wrote up my notes. It had been all at once exhilarating and inspirational. I can’t really complain about being on my feet all day in the salon at home now I know about this fast pace and great workforce all behind the scenes at Keune making the exceptional products we work with everyday!

Thanks Lee and Gary, everyone was looked after us including Editha, Mr Keune and his team and the other companies involved with the trip. I had a great time, and it will bring fresh insights to my salon in deepest south west Devon. X

 

 

Gill goddard Hair: Cian mid head-shave

Me and Cian mid head-shave

When I was asked to support Cian, who was shaving off his hair for charity, the answer was obviously ‘yes’. Here was a young lad, prepared to do something brave for an excellent cause. My role was to shave Cian’s head during his lunch hour from school, which was his pledge for sponsorship. So I readied my clippers for the event.

I love the way that in Totnes there are people willing to do things that step outside for others. And I really like the way, as a business owner and resident I am part of that community and can support this. I also like hearing what people think about this Town we live in and concerns they have for the world well beyond Totnes.

Cian chose WaterAid as his charity. In the salon we use lots of water, it is necessary. But it is easy to forget that there are people all over the world who don’t have access to clean and safe water. And we can help change this. On the 26th March Cian raised £520 to help supply these communities, villages and towns all over the world with clean water.

But that wasn’t all. Cian had been growing his hair for this event for 8 months. This young man had dedicated himself to this project over sometime. We have adult clients who won’t wait that long for their hair to grow long! Because of Cian’s dedication we were able to cut the lengths of his hair so that they could be sent off to make wigs for young people suffering from hair loss, including for cancer patients the same age as him.

So actually there were many good things happening at lunchtime on the 26th March. One determined but lovely young person with two big causes. I was proud to cut his hair. He looks great and now the weather is improving, I hope he won’t be too cold!

Gill and Hanna 2

Gill and Hanna

Hanna, our top stylist and colour expert is about to go on maternity leave. Exciting times! We wish her and husband Joe all the very best with the arrival of their first baby. We will keep you updated on this very special arrival!

Back at the salon, Hanna will be greatly missed by her colleagues. Although, we can now all eat hoola-hoops in peace (Hanna’s one craving)! And we know she will be in the salon to enjoy a bit of pampering now and then, to keep her hair looking wonderful. In the meantime, we thought that we would take moment to share with you some thoughts from Hanna:

 

You have been a stylist for 6 years. What do you remember most about being a junior stylist?

It has been a good few years and I have had some great clients. Unfortunately right at the beginning, I cut my finger on my brand new scissors while I was cutting a gents hair, it wouldn’t stop bleeding so I had to get one of the other girls to take over for me, embarrassing!!

 

These days you are the colour expert for the salon. What does this mean for you clients and colleagues?

I’ve been through some really intensive training to become a colour expert. I think clients enjoy having someone with my level of training and experience. I share what I know with the team who learn from the tips and tricks I’ve picked up along the way.


What do you have to do to become a colour expert?

I went to the Wella world Studio in London for 3 days every month for a year to complete my MCA (Master Colour Award). We had stages of practical and theory based lessons learning everything from what your hair is made up of, to how your eye perceives colour.

And then there was the famous head block challenge which everyone talks about from day one. A head block with long hair split into 4 sections – one black, one green, one red with a dark stripe through it, and one blonde. The challenge: to change the hair all to the same colour in a 6 hour exam! Thank goodness I passed but it was pretty hard! And fortunately I havn’t had anyone come into the salon with a similar challenge… yet!

 

What is the best thing about working with the other staff at Gill Goddard Hair?

I love the fact that everyone who works here gets along. We are mates as well as being work colleagues. We can have a laugh together. I mean who wants to work with people they don’t like?!

 

When have you seen the team in the salon at working at its very best?

I think Christmas week is always the biggest challenge because we are all beyond fully booked. Everyone’s in a good mood and having fun getting ready for Christmas. There is always plenty of chocolate and goodies flowing. (I was lucky this year that I had an excuse to eat the choccies being pregnant!)

 

You help manage the salon and develop staff. Why is training important in the salon more generally?

I think our training is a great way of keeping up within our industry but also it is really good fun. When you do a job that you enjoy the training just makes you want to be even better at it! I prefer the colour training obviously but it’s great that Gill dedicates time out for us to learn and keep us on our toes!! Plus, it means our client have a positive experience with all the stylist – we are all motivated.

 

How has it been maintaining a busy day job whilst being pregnant?

It’s been fine. Clients are always asking me how I am feeling which is nice. I have been trying to sit down more often. Fern has been helping me blow-dry clients hair for a while now so that I’m not standing up all the time. As for cravings – I haven’t really had them. But I am loving hula hoops, whenever there’s a packet lying around in the salon the girls know they are mine!

 

What will you miss whilst you are away on maternity leave do you think?

It is hard to tell before I go, but I know I will miss having nice hair all the time! I’m hoping the girls won’t mind me popping in to keep up my roots and cut!

 

What Fern said about Hanna going on leave:

For a start I’ll miss the lift to work and home – I’ll have to catch the bus. I’m having driving lessons though. Hopefully Hanna’s road rage wont have rubbed off on me, haha. Also just her support, she’s always there to help out. I’ve got a real buzz out of learning colour with Hanna. Also, just her support, she’s always there for me. One day I’d like to be a top stylist.

 

What Kate said about Hanna going on leave:

Gonna be really strange without Han here, gonna miss her a lot. Since I started here 3 years ago I’ve looked up to her with everything and she’s helped and taught me so much! Her time off will fly by though cos we’re so busy and she’ll be back in no time, in the meanime we all get on so well and work well as a team. We will all get on with it and step up to make sure Hans gap is covered. Now she is leaving I thought I have got a break from doing her hair (most fussiest client ever.) But nope she has assured me she will be back just as much to get her hair done!

 

ImageTwo new customers came in together today. One had booked for the other and herself to have new year restyles as a treat. I was prepared. When I have restyles back to back in the appointment book we highlight them to make sure there is enough time for consultations. Once a customer trusts we’re really listening to what they want they ask our advice about making long term changes to their hair like colour and length. This time one of the friends had prepared herself for her consultation by drawing a picture. She drew her own head and the style she wanted with a biro and pencil on a sketch pad. The drawing was lovely – it was detailed, lively and very 3D. It was very clear to me exactly what she wanted and she was confident I would understand it.

I’m always really excited when customers draw themselves and create the style they want and show it to me for my interpretation. To me a drawing is very special. It’s so great that the customer is confident with this drawing for working out her new look with me. And more often than not, it’s been reworked into a longer or shorter version on several pages to consider different versions of the same cut. So before they can snatch the drawing away because they feel embarrassed I ask if I can use it during the cut. And because it’s quite unusual to work from a drawing all the other stylists sneak a peek.

One of the teaching aids we use in the salon is a sheet of A4 with four different aspects of a head. Sometimes describing one cut the paper goes on for five sheets as it’s taken in step by step by the hair stylist. If we want to describe a style or cut to each other we use photocopies of this template of a head and we simply make marks on it to describe different layers or graduation. And of course there is a lot of explaining and describing techniques.

Similarly we learn lots by using these templates for working out how to develop understanding of colour work. Hanna loves drawing out her formulas for corrective colour work on the mirror instead of a piece of paper. Great hairdressers are able to think in pictures and diagrams and through dialogue. It’s a flamboyant thing to mark a mirror in the salon but it’s a temporary and visual aid that works like a drawing. It gets us all excited about the possibilities of restyles – it’s something new and we love creating something individual for our customers. Restyles are always a challenge and we talk about them a lot and sometime photograph the before and after. This time I’ve photographed the drawing.

We have been asking the team in salon about celebrity hair. How they would style it and what they would talk about with those precious private minutes with that person in the chair! Here is Hanna on a Desperate Housewife:

Hanna at Gill Goddard Hair

Hanna at Gill Goddard Hair

Whose hair would you like to do?

Bree van de Kamp (aka Marcia Cross)

Why do you want to do her hair?

Because it’s such an unusual colour!

What style you recommend for which occasion?

I would colour it and cut it shorter – into a sharp bob I think. Because she has such sharp features, she would look good with a defined cut, ready for a film premiere or unveiling of a new show.

What sort of outfit would complement the style you would recommend?

A gorgeous dress that is off the shoulder or not too busy around the neck to show off the new cut.

Which of the Keune So Pure products would you recommend for their hair?

Keune So Pure colour care shampoo and conditioner – to keep the colour vibrant. Air Foam Strong – to give the hair some hold & body when blow-drying.

What would you talk about during her time in the chair?

I would ask her about her career and filming desperate housewives because it was one of my favourite programmes!

Fern Junior Stylist at Gill Goddard Hair

Fern Junior Stylist at Gill Goddard Hair

Fern is the lovely Junior stylist at Gill Goddard Hair. We popped out to the New Walk Brassiere to have a drink and a chat. Fern has a great laugh and is full of life. She has been dedicated to Gill Goddard Hair and clients throughout her studies and graduated earlier in the year as a stylist. (Congratulations to Fern!)

We talked about what she loves about working at Gill Goddard Hair. We also talked about textiles, Top Shop and letting her hair down. Apparently she would love to share her evening pizza with a man off TV called Dodger….

Why did you become a hair stylist?

I have always loved hairdressing. I really loved art at school, especially textiles, but I am a better hairdresser than I am artist! But I do think hair styling is creative, so I enjoy it a lot. If I wasn’t a stylist I would like to be a beautician or a designer.

You are wearing a great combat jacket. Is that from your favourite shop?

Yes! I love Top Shop. I don’t follow the big designers – out of my price range! But I do love nearly everything at Top Shop. Mostly you will see me in the salon in black. This top has got a back longer than the front, I really like that style.  Black for the winter – and because it goes with everything. Orange and coral for summer. Actually, I don’t wear a lot of coral but I like it on other people.

Tell us about working at Gill Goddard Hair?

I really like it at Gill’s. Everyone wants you to get on and be as good as you can be. Hairdressing can be very competitive, nasty even. But at our salon people support you and help you to be the best. Gill gives us lots of training, in salon and in training centres. Not many salon owners do as much as that to help their staff.

Gill Goddard Hair at Christmas

Gill Goddard Hair at Christmas

What is the highlight of the year for you in the salon?

I love Christmas. We are so busy. Lots of clients come in and tell us about their Christmas plans. I get lots of younger clients that tell me about their parties and where they are going that night. It is a lot of fun. And wearing the Christmas hats – I love that picture!

What do you do in the evening after a hard day’s work?

I like watching 90210, Hollyoaks, Made in Chelsea (they are so posh!) and The Only Way is Essex “Shut Up!” (Said with a very good Essex accent). I live with my mum so she cooks me dinner. I love Pizza.

If you could go out to dinner with anyone who would it be?

Dodger from Hollyoaks of course! (Ha ha). And we would eat Pizza!

If you could style anyone’s hair who would it be?

Someone young and famous. I would do Beyoncé – although I would be really scared! Or Rhianna.  I would be so nervous! I actually love styling long hair. You can straighten or curl it, there are so many possibilities. I think younger clients like to come to me because I understand how important it is to cut long hair just the right length. I know what it is like to be out in the evening and want your long hair to be, like, perfect.

To book an appointment with Fern for a cut and finish call us on 01803 866101.

 

Fern was talking to Anna

Keune “Odors have a power of persuasion stronger than that of words, appearances, emotions, or will. The persuasive power of an odor cannot be fended off, it enters into us like breath into our lungs, it fills us up, imbues us totally.” Patrick SüskindPerfume: The Story of a Murderer 

It sounds like a marketing strategy to say that we have changed over from a system using sulphates and parabens to a gentle cleansing range of ecoproducts. But there is more to it than that. Through the power of odors we really have changed.  It all started way back when a customer asked me how I was reducing my carbon footprint. I knew her well so I held up my scissors in horror and told her the truth: hairdressers work with chemicals and formulas to restructure the look and feel of hair. And in doing so they’re not saving the planet!

We had already installed an efficient two part boiler for saving energy, but this got me thinking about changing to a more sustainable range of products. I started looking around at what was on the market. For us, chemical products had always been packaged as reliable formulas that would do what it said on the tin. That tin was finally recycled when I found the new range of Keune So Pure. It was a relief to find gentle natural formulas that could make hair shinier; give natural volume, and maintain colour. What I didn’t know at that stage was the positive effect that the new products’ would have on our team during the working day, as well as our customers.

To give you some early examples: a customer was gazing in the mirror at the shelves of mint green bottles behind me and she said “they make me want to go out and buy Creme de Menthe!”  The comment probably relates to her seniority in years and made me laugh because I knew exactly what she meant. Another customer remarked that she would like to buy the same smell as the one she had at the basin, meaning the So Pure Exfoliating Shampoo with extracts of lavender and tea tree.

We sometimes feel like we’re selling exotic food, like red pomegranates or brown star anise because we talk about food a lot, and somehow using these products reinforces that lovely feeling.

The experience of a deeply satisfying smell at a moment when you are vulnerable to another in the hairdressers definitely improves communications between stylist and customer. It is like eating and sharing something terrific like good food!

There’s no doubt; aromatic essential oils stimulate overriding feelings of wellbeing and health that can’t really be described here. Smells are emotive  and we have been surprised by how much we love So Pure and enjoy using the product range in our everyday work. It’s so light and gentle on the skin and we’ve realised in the change how important that is to our hands too.

What we know for sure is that the natural aromatics of So Pure have changed the dynamics of having a shampoo or other service at the basin. It’s because this range smells so good that everyone feels more relaxed. One and all enjoy it now when a customer is being shampooed – or when the So Pure Moulding Wax or amazing Argon oil is being applied. 

Many times, since bringing in this range, I’ve thought about the book ‘Perfume’ by Patrick Suskind and the effect the story had on me. That’s because it was the first time I understood the irresistible power of perfume. I like the quote above, and I hope the blog inspires you to try our new range!

P.s., Pop in and look, or try a luxury moisturising treatment. We offer a junior stylist cut and finish for £25!

So Pure by Keune, Molding Mud

So Pure by Keune, Molding Mud

Gill knows that I don’t like product in my hair. In fact, it took me several years to move to moose to style and finish (and then only for special occasions). My hair loses its life so easily. And synthetic products do this the quickest in my case.

So when Gill showed me the Moulding Mud from Keune So Pure range my eyes narrowed. I looked in the mirror at another fabulous cut from Gill, and a colour from Hanna, and said – ‘oh go on then’. The products from Keune smell so good, and the cut so neat that what could possibly go wrong? Gill had told me about So Pure and I knew this was one of the most natural professional hair care ranges in the business.

In fact I took a pot of the Keune So Pure Moulding Mud home. And this is what I have to report:

  • This is the first hair styling product I have used that is in fact neither waxy, synthetic or drippy!
  • It actually does help you style at home
  • …. It actually does help you style in 10 seconds (result with small kids around)
  • It stays and works (even after a trip out in that fine morning mist that is a Totnes special)
  • I can brush my hair at night, sleep on it and get up with reasonable hair for a day out
  • It smells lush…. Really, you only have to smell it to know the ingredients (lovely soft orange)
  • You only need a teeny-tiny bit on the hair to have effect (value for money, I say)

So next time I am in I will be picking up more of these Keune So Pure deliciousnesses. A quite hair-yummy range. And my aversion to product is, well, disappearing in a burst of orange-scented mud!

 

Anna Lodge, Customer since 2007

Keune So Pure on our shelves in salon

Keune So Pure on our shelves in salon

We recently launched as the flagship salon for Keune So Pure in Devon. It is fantastic to have a new range of professional products in salon. Especially as the values of the Keune company and So Pure range resonate so well with our own.

Gill Goddard Hair is a family run business. Keune functions as a co-operative rather than as a hierarchical company and are special as they are one of the few independent companies in the giant world of hair styling and the professional hair industry.

As a salon we are absolutely passionate about professional and creative hairstyling. So is Keune – take a look at this video to see more. The So Pure Natural Balance range is chemical free; kinder to our stylists and our customers. We have always sourced high quality products, the So Pure Range guarantees an environmentally friendly product without parabens and sulphates, with essential oils at their heart.

I can hear you asking what are parabens and sulphates and what do they mean to you and to us?

Parabens are chemical preservatives derived from oil and we are, at present, wary of their effect on us. Sulphates are very harsh chemical foaming agents. This can result in stress to our hair and skin.  

So what makes these natural organic products offered in the Keune So Pure range as effective?

The answer lies in a greater understanding of the effective action of mild detergents as cleansers and purifiers.  Unlike most hair products that use chemical solutions, So Pure uses the qualities of nature’s gentle cleansing, exfoliating and moisturising ingredients protecting the hair and scalp from the elements of colouring, sun and wind exposure and ultimately drying out.  Rather than invent an artificial solution to the problem Keune have developed a concept that is complimentary to nature. This also supports the demands of our environmental footprint and increasing need to address sustainability in our busy lives.

The basis of the concept of So Pure products is the use of essential oils derived from herbs, flowers, fruit and roots. Cooling mint, Calming lavender and Energising ginger are part of the range for oily and sensitive scalps and fine hair that needs volume. The emphasis is much more about the products complementing our health and wellbeing.

Why should customers buy professional products?

Professional products are always designed to enable the expert stylist to prescribe particular treatments for individual customers with specific lifestyles and needs. Generic shampoos and conditioners can be harsh chemical reproductions of professional products. They aren’t able to address the condition of the hair and scalp without further damage and overload.

After six years of using luxury products made by a multinational, we are delighted to welcome the So Pure from Keune in salon. We are also, in this way, re-affirming our commitment to sustainable business practices and to using and marketing much more sustainable natural products. Come in and try them. You will love them.