Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Stressless Kess


In the past the thought of a haircut would fill me with dread. I used to fear the hairdresser the way some people fear dentists. Put it down to bad childhood experiences I guess - the mere sound of snipping scissors would have me breaking out in a cold sweat.

After years of growing my hair long so as to avoid haircuts, my friend put me onto this little salon in my local St Lukes Mall about a year and a half ago. I am not the most regular of customers (I still have residual phobias), but whenever I go there, I always come out smiling.

Lately I've been taking the kids there for haircuts as well. They are very patient with my two-year-old's squirming and all the stylists are great - they listen to what you want. Plus - they are even cheaper than Just Cuts, but without the fear factor and randomness. You can book appointments with your favourite stylist or just walk in.

Today I just walked in. It was quiet. Most of the stores in the mall weren't open yet. Who did I see in the coffe shop next door to Kess? My neighbour! She had been in yesterday to have her hair coloured - it looked lovely. Fifty bucks, she said. Whaaat?! Too cheap. If I'd known that I would have flagged away my $20 home dye job and relaxed in a chair for a head massage instead.

Anyway. My stylist was "Irina" (I'm guessing her name); a tall gorgeous Russian. She doesn't say much but she knows what she's doing.

"Chhhvat you vaaant?" she asked me in that cool-as accent. I was just going to get a trim, my usual boring safe option. But looking admiringly at her sleek hairdo I suddenly blurted, "Um could I have what you've got? Do you think that would suit me...?"

"Schhhure!" she said, and started cutting.

 I closed my eyes and waited for it to be over. I'm not that chatty in salons, my childhood phobias have me holding my breath and gripping the chair underneath that sexy cape.

But that's OK. Irina's not really the chatty kind. I listened in to the lady next me who was getting her hair coloured as she chatted to her sweet Indian colourist (Kess is  very United Nations; the eyebrow girl is Thai). She lamented over having to move on from her old colourist in a posh Newmarket salon... she was finally forced to stop going there when they put it up from $185 to $205 just to get her greys done. Ouch. No wonder she switched to Kess.  

 Finally Irina finished and declared me several years younger than when I'd walked in. I'd asked her to go the whole hog and style-blow dry it. I mean, the cut was ridiculously cheap at $25. Yes, you heard me: TWENTYFIVEDOLLARS.

So a fancy blow-wave was an affordable luxury on top; $50 total. Still cheap as chips.
I walked out with my hair shining and bouncing. I felt like a stylie young mama instead of straggly middle-aged one. What do you think? Not bad aye?? I haven't had it this short since I was twenty-two, but I like it.

And I love Kess. Almost enough to get over my phobia.

There are Kess Salons all over Auckland. I can't vouch for the other Kess Salons but the St Lukes one ROCKS.

KESS ST LUKES: Ground Level, St Lukes Mall Mt Albert
PH 09-845 1020  

KESS ALBANY: Westfield-Shop 212 A Don McKinnon Dr, Albany
PH 09-448 1972

KESS SYLVIA PARK: 39/286 Mt Wellington Hwy, Mt Wellington 

PH 09-579 5377

KESS MANUKAU: Westfield Manukau Mall Manukau 

PH 09-262 2025  

►KESS HENDERSON: Westfield -Shop 165 Catherine St Henderson

PH 09-978 6875


  1. Smokin HOT!

    man I need a kess down here!

  2. Right I'm going. I'm a mess - which you will see tomorrow - and finances just don't allow for a cut at the moment...well until now!!

  3. I like it a lot! Suits you ma'am! :)
    I get really nervous at the hairdresser's too. I've so many awful awful cuts that I tend to pray all the while I'm in the chair! Had a few good ones now so don't panic quite as much as I used to now!! What a great price! Did you know in Aus they charge you more if you have long hair than if you have short hair??? What is THAT all about!

  4. My Mum is on a tight budget and NEVER spends money on herself, always other people. I don't think she's ever had a salon colour until I read this and convinced her to try Kess - she's a total convert and we are all thrilled!

    Thanks for posting, St Lukes is our local and we'd never heard of Kess before Undercover Bloggers : )

  5. BEWARE KESS Sylvia Park!!!! I took Lucy there to get her very straight hair TRIMMED - you know an inch off to tidy is now a mess thanks to a very crap hairdresser. How can you muck up straight long hair that just needs to be trimmed. Seriously i would have done it myself except that she LOVES going to a hairdresser. It is now all uneven, way shorter than anticipated/requested/ shorter at the front than the back (in a bad way). ARGH!!! I did complain a bit. They then asked if Cooper was next to which I replied NO i will take him somewhere else. I would have made a bigger fuss but did not want to make it a bad experience for Lucy. GRRRRRRR!!!

  6. This is a fucking scam. This lady is the cousin of the russian hairdresser who work at Kess Hair and Beauty St Lukes. You people so STUPID! Wonder how l know? Because l used to work at Kess Hair And Beauty St Lukes!

  7. Nope i am not the Russian lady's cousin. She was a great hairdresser and i wish she still worked there. I still get the kids hair cut there but my favourite lady left so i went elsewhere. Whatever, it's still good value haircut. This is not a scam post by the way... and There is no need to swear either :(

  8. I made the and installed most of the fittings for this Kess and the lotto shop next door, my pride is really in the lotto counter, its the only circular one in the country, when it was made.
    Not to mention I did some work at the Micheal hill shop down the same thorughfare.
    WEll done Chris, it still looks amazing.


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