I am not sure which is more difficult; finding a good man in Dubai, or a good hairdresser. Trying new things can be scary. Especially when that new thing is finding someone to do your hair in a foreign country. It’s not for the faint hearted (or for anyone with trust issues). Dubai has an abundance of hair and beauty salons, and to be honest, finding a good one is like finding a needle in a haystack. It’s pretty much trial and error, however, the errors tend to be expensive – not to mention difficult – to reverse.
Well, I am your girl right here. I have had more hair blunders in Dubai than your average Joe. That’s probably because for the five years prior to moving to Dubai, I had short, bleach blonde hair, and I am pretty much clueless on how to do anything with hair that is longer than three inches.
When I first moved to Dubai, I had to grow out my hair. I say that, however, work didn’t actually force me to grow my hair, but they did tell me that the colour would need to be changed to something more natural and I didn’t fancy having short dark hair. Cue a series of terrible stripy highlights, brassy blondes, bleach breakage, bands… You name it and my hair suffered from it. I went for one blow dry that left me looking like a Stepford wife. Had another one that resulted in me resembling the blonde one from Abba.
I didn’t know anyone in Dubai when I first moved, which made it difficult – there were no gal pals to recomend me a good salon or stylist. But fear not, I am here to give you a heads up, so that your hair doesn’t suffer the same fate.
So, here are my top 5 places to get your hair done in Dubai and the pro’s and con’s of each one. I couldn’t save my hair but I can try my best to save yours!
- SLaM – A really cool salon situated in the Al Joud Centre. This salon only does hair, and offers the wonder treatment that is Olaplex: quite a rarity in Dubai. It’s literally been the Holy Grail of all hair products I have tried and trust me, there’s been a few! The stylists here are phenomenal, and not afraid to use colour. You name it – they do it, wether it’s balayage you’re looking for, or hot pink. They offer discount to Facecard holders, as well as a reward scheme for all you lovely ladies. The prices here are pretty decent (in terms of Dubai prices that is…). I’ve had appointments with the lovely Ali, and Kayleigh. Extra kudos for the amazing head massage in between hair rinses. Relaxation central! Check out their instagram here.
- Bpod – Tee at Bpod is a great stylist from New Zealand who has worked with celeb clients (inlcuding Naomi Campbell) and at fashion shows in the past. Really good stylist for both cut and colour, but can be a little bit pricey, particularly if you have mega-long locks. Located in Al Saqr Business Tower, SZR, this salon also offers discount for Facecard holders.
- Casa Havana – Zaya is a technical wonder when it comes to hair colour and also offers a wide range of hair treatments. She managed to salvage my hair after some dodgy striped highlights and really knows how to work with fine hair. I know quite a few blonde girls that swear by her. The salon is inspired by Cuba and has a really quirky feel to it. Another salon which offers discount for Facecard holders and does a variety of different deals each month. You can see Zaya’s work on her instagram here.
- Hatem Hair – This salon is my absolute go to for anything related to hair extensions. They’ve been in the biz for twenty-five years and are another salon that only specialises in hair. From the outside, this Deira based salon doesn’t look anything spectacular, but these guys and girls really know what they are doing when it comes to hair extensions. They offer really good quality hair at a great price, and they can even re-use the same extensions the next time you visit which is a huge financial saving. Three girls will work on your hair at the one time which cuts time spent in the salon significantly – making more time for other things, like shopping! They offer a huge array of lengths and colours of extensions, which makes getting an exact match easy! Just be sure to be firm when telling them how to blend in the extensions at the front or you could end up with having some sort of feathered layers. Not ideal after you have your extensions removed and want to go for a blunt bob – not gonna happen! Find them in instagram here.
- Blowout Bar – The one stop shop for your perfect blow-dry! Because who has the time to blow-dry their own hair!? Just joking – this place is great for when you have a special occasion, or for those times when you need something that’s going to carry you through the weekend. There’s a huge variety of blow drys and up do’s on the menu for you to choose from, and there’s literally something for everyone. You can even have your mani-pedi done at the same time killing two birds with one stone. Book in advance because it can get pretty busy at the weekend. Check out their instagram for some blow-dry inspo here.
So, that sums up my first ever blog post! I hope that this saves even ONE expat girl’s hair from the nightmare that is finding a good hairdresser, and any other recommendations of who and where to go is always appreciated! Happy hair day! Get booking your appointments just in time for the weekend!
FYI – My title photo was taken yesterday after a colour appointment with SLaM’s lovely Kayleigh!