Fancy finding your BFF or husband in a hair salon? Carina Koh speaks to two women who did.
Photo of model showbit.com
The first time Tricia met John, she had no inkling that the stylist was going to be her future husband. “I just thought he had a confident handshake and an assertive tone, both of which I’m drawn to because most guys I meet are very shy when introducing themselves. But I’m usually attracted to bad boys, and John isn’t one,” she says with a laugh. She had read rave reviews online about John’s haircuts and service at Salon Vim, so she decided to see what the fuss was about.
Well, they were right about the service, because after her perm, John texted her to ask how her curls were holding up. Tricia recalls: “I thought that was nice because I had some questions on how to maintain my perm, but was too shy to approach him first. I was worried that he’d think I was hitting on him!” After her follow-up appointment, the pair went out for dinner and started dating soon after. That was five years ago. Earlier this year, John proposed to Tricia at an idyllic spot overlooking a lake while they were on holiday in Hakone, Japan.
The perks of having a hairstylist husband-to-be
“John makes sure every day is a good hair day for me – that’s the best perk! Also, I’m quite an impulsive shopper, and John controls my spending on hair products and tools, since he knows exactly what’s good for my hair,” says Tricia. And the great hair days work out perfectly for Tricia, since she regularly posts selfies on her Instagram (@vaingloriousyou; she has almost 47,000 followers). She adds: “He tries new hair treatments and hair-cutting techniques on me. About a year and a half ago, I actually went on an anti-hair loss programme at his request because he needed a model. Thankfully, it worked well on me!”
The best tips she’s received from John:
1) To get more volume without the use of products, use crimpers and backcomb the hair around the crown.
2) When curling your locks, leave at least 2.5cm (at the ends of your hair) uncurled for a more modern look.
Tricia Ong, 27, owner and creative director of womenswear label and boutique Vaingloriousyou, and John Tham, 28, director and stylist at Salon Vim
Take a look at TV presenter Angela May’s Instagram (@angemay) and you’ll definitely spot Henri, who is a regular fixture in her photos. They’ve known each other for a whopping 18 years; in fact, Angela says that they’ve “been friends for so long that we didn’t even have Facebook back then to document our friendship!” They met at the members’ bar at Zouk, where they started chatting after bumping into each other. Since then, she’s been going to him for regular haircuts.
The pair grew closer in 2004, when Angela moved back to Singapore after working abroad. “We’re always out and about, trying out the newest restaurants,” she says. Angela, who is opening her own restaurant in Robinsons The Heeren in March this year, adds: “Henri is always willing to go above and beyond for a friend. When I told him about my new restaurant opening, I could tell that he was swelling up with pride and happiness. You can tell when a friend is genuinely happy for you, and I definitely get that from him.”
The perks of having a hairstylist BFF
“You’ll always find me at Cinq Studio. Besides (going there for) my regular monthly haircuts, I basically treat the place like a social hub. It’s in Scotts Square, which is such a convenient location, so I often pop by for a pre-dinner drink or a chat,” she says.
The best tips she’s received from Henri:
1) To prevent new dye jobs from fading, use sulphate-free shampoos – these are gentle, and do not strip hair of pigmentation and natural oils.
2) Do not trim your fringe yourself. If your bangs get too long for your liking, use a root-lifting spray to give them a boost of volume (this instantly makes them a little shorter too!) – and leave the haircuts to the professionals.
Angela May, 40, culinary TV presenter, and Henri Leong, 50, director of Cinq Studio