Living in a busy and air-polluted city such as Hong Kong, booking monthly facials at your favorite spa for a skin detox might already be common practice. But can you say you do the same for your hair? Regular deep cleansing can heal your deepest hair woes: unclogging pores blocked by grease, dirt and other impurities, and repairing hair follicles for greater shine and less frizz. And in Hong Kong’s humidity? Man do we know about frizz. We headed to Lee Tung Avenue’s recently opened hair salon, The Elephant, to find out how its signature scalp treatments can help us clear out the guck from everyday city-living, and achieve naturally healthy, glossy locks. adidas Mutator
Located in a ground floor and mezzanine space along Lee Tung Avenue, The Elephant is named after the sturdy, noble animal itself, wanting to be seen as a sturdy, dependable service that literally tackles hair problems at the roots. There's also a private room sectioned off upstairs, perfect for wedding parties or for people who want a bit more privacy. Apart from scalp therapy, regular hair services, nail and makeup services are also offered.
I sat in for a full scalp treatment at The Elephant with Fred Ng, the salon’s Principal stylist. Following the consultation, the first part was a professional ion and ozone scalp clean and therapy ($300HKD). My hair was sectioned, and the middle to end parts sprayed with a Japanese protective lotion to strengthen and purify it from existing chemicals. This was followed by a 10-minute steam session—strapping me in with a massive shower cap and all—using The Elephant’s ‘iMist’ machine to deep clean my scalp. Instead of regular steam, this releases smaller mist particles which penetrates the hair more easily, also pushing the product deep into each hair, though not without the help of negative ions and ozone—the latter of which can be harmful if you inhale too much.
The second part of the treatment is a relaxing deep clean therapy ($500), taking place at the shampoo station. A glycolic acid product (a very mild fruit acid, much like the type used for facial exfoliation) was applied to my scalp, and rubbed on with a combed vibrating massager. I could feel a thorough tingly sensation, which felt refreshingly like mint (even though it wasn’t).
After this, a mint-based shampoo was used to further deep clean my hair—and while it started off gentle and cooling, my scalp felt almost scarily minty and clear after lathering up a storm; I half-expected my skin to feel tight and dry after the wash, though this worry was soothed as the shampoo eased into a head massage where I drifted off to sleep for a minute or two.
I was very pleased to find that the results were the complete opposite to my worries. After getting conditioned, rinsed and dried, my hair had a healthy sheen from root to tip, and felt absolutely weightless, with more volume and bounce. While you can’t expect stick straight hair after the treatment (it’s far from a Brazilian blowout after all), the frizziness I normally have was visibly lessened, and flyaways all tamed. It’s a subtler, healthier result compared to getting a regular blowout for sure.
If you’re tired of dealing with frizzy, tangled, greasy or flat, lifeless locks, your solution perhaps lies in simply in getting a quick refresher in your roots. The salon recommends a regular treatment every month or month and a half—but for those with more pressing concerns, long term therapy packages are available.
Written by Evelyn Lok