Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. Prices included below as usual.
Gen Hair Salon (meaning root in Chinese) opened around October this year at Westgate Mall in Jurong East. New salons usually run generous promotions to draw the crowd, and that drew my attention to Gen Hair Salon. Found this on their Instagram (@genhairsalon) and I started considering trying out their services. I've been troubled by my constant case of dandruff and itchy scalp despite daily washing and maintenance.
The severity of my dandruff is still relatively controllable (I think). It is just terribly embarrassing when I untie my hair on public transport and have flakes scattering over my clothes - I stopped untying my hair in public ever since. The trigger point was when someone pointed out that there are dandruff in my hair, and that was when I decided to do something about it.
Finding Gen Hair Salon in Westgate Mall
Located right opposite Llao Llao on Level 3 of Westgate Mall, Gen is hard to miss with their woody and modern furnishing. After exiting from Jurong East MRT, turn left right after Starbucks and take the escalator near Toastbox or Samsung. I took the long route into the air-conditioned portion of Westgate Mall and took awhile to find Gen :(
Taken from Gen Hair Salon's Facebook Page.
When I reached, the promotion board has been changed to this:
My hairstylist for the day was Albee, the only lady featured here:
Image taken from Gen's Facebook
How Gen Works
When I was showed to my seat, I saw this photo frame on the counter.
I was puzzled at how cheap the price was, and of course, then I saw the line below "All Hair Services Exclude Products." This brings me to the existence of the whole shelf of boxes at the back of the salon when you walk in.
At Gen, you'll have to purchase products for your hair service. Service is charged separately. For repeated services like hair treatments, your product will be labeled and kept in these boxes until the next time you come for the service. Your products can be shared with your family members and friends, but only with your permission. Every subsequent visit will mean you'll only have to pay for your hair service.
This being my first time attempting a hair treatment session, I wasn't sure what service I need, or should be doing. So before I decided, I had to first explain to Albee what were my concerns and from there she will recommend me the products and services I should use.
My Hair and Scalp Diagnosis
I have an oily scalp, and my hair has bleached ends. My hair is a steep gradient of an oil field to hay at the ends. If I don't shower within 18 hours, my scalp will be shiny and greasy.
This is the embarrassing natural state of my hair on a daily basis.
I told Albee about the fluttering flakes whenever I untie my hair, which I thought were dandruff. Also my apparent increased hair loss ever since I bleached my hair a year ago.
A quick scalp scanning showed that my follicles were somewhat blocked by residue and dirt. You'll also notice a huge piece of flake right beside the follicle, ugh. The problem was that these flakes were accumulating faster than they were peeling, which could be attributed to a few possible reasons: oily scalp, my body's rate of skin renewal is faster (by right, the average renewal period is 28 days), residue from hair products and a few more.
I was also told that one healthy follicle can grow about 3 to 4 strands of hair. Residue and dirt can block the follicles, which reduces the number of strands each follicle can grow. Or, at a later stage, cause each strand of hair to grow thinner and thinner. These build up to hair thinning, or hair loss.
Thankfully the thickness of my hair still looks decent, but there's much cleaning needed to do for my follicles :(
The Scalp Treatment and Hair Treatment Products
Albee started picking out products for my treatment, which I was surprised came from different brands. I was somewhat expecting it'll all to be a standard treatment from Kerastase. I was told that at Gen, the hairstylists will customize the treatment based on your concerns.
The main hero of my treatment that day was from Mediceuticals. It's a tray of 10 small treatment bottles, used to deep cleanse the scalp.
This is what each bottle looks like.
Albee also picked out a series of products for the ends of my hay-like hair.
Hair oil, a pre-shampoo (that I eventually bought and brought home instead), and a hair mask.
Before I started, I was told not to expect my hair to be silky smooth, as the focus of today's treatment will be to replenish the protein in my hair, and treat my scalp. Protein treatments will not leave hair silky, but it is essential to strengthen damaged hair. To me, I was slightly worried although I didn't know what to expect by "not silky smooth hair".
Scalp Treatment and Hair Treatment Process
1. Massage Mediceuticals' Scalp Product into scalp
This process took about 10 minutes, which was very relaxing. I love scalp massages, and I was very impressed by Albee's strength in massaging. I was struggling to stay awake while intermittently asking her questions about my scalp and hair.
2. Apply the pre-shampoo to roots of hair
Albee left the pre-shampoo for a few minutes before the wash off. The way the pre-shampoo works, is to balance out the pH value of my hair which, is extremely damaged due to bleaching. It also protects my hair from the shampoo, which can also further dry out my hair while cleaning.
3. Wash off with scalp shampoo
I was blown away by this seemingly normal procedure.
I've always been a fan of shampooing because of the massages, but it gets on my nerves when the staff scratches my scalp or my ear too hard. At Gen, the chairs are secretly massage chairs, and I dozed off while Albee was washing my hair. The second round of head massage knocked me out, and I was really quite sad that it ended, haha.
4. Apply Kerastase hair mask
The mask was left on for about 10 minutes.
5. Wash off and apply leave-in conditioner
6. Blow dry
7. Apply Moroccan Oil Treatment
Before applying the oil, Albee reminded me that my hair isn't silky smooth. To be honest, I had no idea what she's talking about. My hair weren't tangled, it felt super smooth (I've never had such smooth hair in a year) but I guess it was relative.
The Results of My Scalp Treatment and Hair Treatment
While I'm not really a fan of curls, I really love how my hair is tame and actually radiant.
To determine when's my next treatment session, Albee scanned my scalp again:
Seems like I won't need to come back till a month later! If the post treatment scan shows residue or more problems, you will possibly have to return in 1 to 2 weeks to have the issue addressed.
Now for the mandatory post treatment photo at the Gen wall,
The service I did was a 4 step treatment (which will cost $80). The Mediceuticals scalp product I left at the shop for future use set me back by $110 for a tray of 10. My homecare Kerastase pre-shampoo cost me $54, and another bottle of Kerastase shampoo that was $49. There was a storewide 20% off Kerastase products, plus a 40% off hair services if you purchased products worth more than $150. The last I checked, the promotion should end mid to end of January 2016, just in time for CNY :D