If I had my way, sexy escapes and bad-hair days would never be bedfellows. The snag is they often go hand in hand – unless you’re armed with a few insider secrets. So I signed up for a MicroMist steam treatment* from Kell Skött Haircare and not only did I get a sleek shiny do befitting of a St Tropez show-off (destined, sadly, for a North London gastropub at best), but I also gleaned some fab insider travel and haircare tips from this dynamic half-Danish West London duo. Jacqueline and Kell are the acclaimed husband-and-wife team behind this celebrated Notting Hill salon, and I thought it only fair to share their savvy with the group. As well as tapping them for their holiday haircare advice (it’s not just about having a salon-beautiful bob, Mr Smith, pay attention…), I asked this stylish couple for inspiring boutique-travel tip-offs too:
Whether your hair’s ravaged by sun, sea and sand or you want a quick-fix for a late-summer last hurrah, how to ensure tresses look their best on and after a trip?
“In the sun, protect, protect and protect. Use PhytoPlage Protective Beach Spray for the best care. And try and get your colour done a few weeks before going away. This gives your hair time to recover and regain its natural balance making it more resistant to sun damage. Leave the straightening irons at home, and pop some conditioner in during the day to beat frizz and moisturise.”
OK, now that we know how to look the part, where to flaunt it… What’s your favourite hotel?
“Ca’s Xorc in Soller, Mallorca. For us, it’s the perfect getaway. It’s only a quick flight from London to Palma and then a short drive from airport, yet it feels like a million miles away. Stunning mountain location, beautiful pool, marvellous food, friendly staff and fond memories from our honeymoon.”
And your fantasy Winter Sun escape?
“We’d fly first class to South Africa where we’d hook up with Kell’s sister and brother-in-law. Then we’d hail a private jet to the Eastern Transvaal where we’d stay in suites at Singita Boulders in Kruger National Park: the epitome of African safari scenery, five-star service and luxury accommodation.
Next we’d fly to Port Elizabeth, hire a Ferrari 250 GTO – this is a dream after all – and we’d take a leisurely drive through the Tsitsikamma national park, where we’d stay in at the Tsala Treetop Lodge in Plettenburg Bay.
Constantia would be our next stop (pictured left), via the Garden Route and some whale watching; we’d have a long leisurely lunch under the trees at La Colombe, eating melt-in-your-mouth kudu tartare and drinking Veenwouden Merlot 2004. Dessert would come with a bottle of superb Vin de Constance wine, Napolean’s death-bed drink of choice.
A helicopter would whisk us to the Bushmans Kloof near Cape Town – an amazing oasis in the Cedarburg Mountains. Here we’d be joined by all of our closest friends for a braai under the stars at their stunning outdoor restaurant.
Back in CT and we’d have a picnic on Llandudno beach, a dinner of scallop dim sum at Haiku, before waddling into that first-class flatbed for the night flight home. Perfect food, weather, wine, company, no jet-lag, and as this is a dream escape our dogs would get to come with us on safari too…”
*Now here’s the science bit:
MicroMist is a revolutionary new Japanese deep-conditioning treatment, which tames the most unruly tresses with its steam-and-smooth jiggery-pokery, for only £27. Have the full high-shine hog and get a ‘Go Glossy’ intensive treatment; it does what it says on the tin, and more, for £15.
Kell Skött Haircare
93 Golborne Road, London W10 (020 8964 3004)
2–4 Lambton Place, London W11 (020 7229 1671)
Nearest Smith hotel: Miller’s Residence 111a Westbourne Grove, London W11