Glass has a hair transformation at Josh Wood Colour

JOSH Wood is the Gaia of hairstyling and colouring. He is now also the Global Creative Director for Redken and co-founder of his home hair-colour brand, Josh Wood Colour. He is also a prominent backstage figure around global fashion weeks – as well as being the stylist of choice to many household names.

His West London salon is behind Holland Park station and is impossible to miss. Painted black from top to bottom and plastered in bright-yellow heart-eyes emojis, they instantly strike joy.


The interior of Josh Wood Colour

When lockdown hit in March 2020, I had only just got my highlights redone. Months passed, my hair was getting dryer, my curls were no longer curling, and my mood plummeted. I realised in December 2020 that I no longer identified with my blonde self. Add heartbreak on top of that, and you get my point.

I thought that the way forward was to dye my hair back to my natural (dark) colour in a bid to go back to being myself, free from my past. It did not work. Once you’ve been blonde, you can never go back.

The exterior of Josh Wood Colour

I spent months trying to adjust to my natural colour. But I was looking into the mirror, and my hair had become a signifier of pain. Talk about attaching meaning to meaningless things. 

So I pulled the plug and decided that I wanted myself back. Or new self. I wanted a middle ground between the platinum blonde that I was in 2020 and the dark blonde I was now in May 2021. I know I sound like Carrie Bradshaw after Big left her at the altar, but it was far less glamorous than that.  

The interior of Josh Wood

To quote Mike from“This is one of the most impressive salon interiors I’ve seen. The interior is as important as the stylists as it creates a vibe that can’t be replaced”. The truth is, the pandemic has been brutal. Add heartbreak to that, and you get a royal mess. However, as a general rule of thumb, please don’t change your blonde hair colour because your significant other said that they need to stop dating people they’re not serious about. It’s not about you – your significant other is simply dense.  

So fast-forward to the present time,  here I am sitting at Josh Wood with Issie [Churcher], my colourist. We speak at length over what I want to achieve with my new colour, and she flat out said no to me. What? Now all my dreams are shattered. “What do you mean?” I say as I’m nearing tears. “I mean that if you go fully blonde again, you’ll leave the salon with your hair in a plastic bag. It’s too damaged.” Thanks for the tough love. 

Issie said something to me that my therapist should’ve said months beforehand. I need to look at what I’ve got, accept it and make the best of what nature has given to me. Issie is right. Maybe the journey towards self-acceptance starts behind Josh Wood’s doors. 

The interior of Josh Wood Colour

We decide on a full-head balayage and a trim. A TRIM. I never cut my hair. I’ve always been a long-haired blonde. Fast-forward 20 minutes, and now I’m sitting in stylist’s Nicholas Hardwick’s chair for a trim. “Are you nervous?” he asks. “Are you being sarcastic?” I reply. I look at him and notice his mannerisms with his silver pair of scissors. What dexterity, what delicacy, what accuracy. I glance in the mirror – I can’t even tell I had a haircut. Nicholas – just a heads up – I’m never leaving you. 

The interior of Josh Wood Colour

After my visit to Josh Wood, I feel like I  dropped months of emotional dead weight. Now I need to maintain the routine – half-head balayage for the next round and a trim – every eight-to-12 weeks. By Christmas, I should be in peak hair health. Long story short, by not letting me have my way, the team at Josh Wood helped me find my way.  Maybe the key to becoming is unbecoming. And yes, hair is everything. 

by Adina Ilie

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