Trying out a new hair salon can be quite the risk. Find a great one and there's nothing like the feeling of post-cut elation. Put your hair in the hands of someone subpar, however, and you can leave feeling utterly distraught. The good news, however, is that London is bursting with reputable salons and hairdressers we're more than confident to recommend you trust your precious locks with. Here's our guide to the best hair salons in London – you're welcome.
The best hair salon for: a top-to-toe pampering experience
Vogue editors choose to get their hair cut at Hershesons – and with good reason. The 5,000 sq ft super-salon on Berners Street caters to far more than just hair, boasting a DryBy nail bar, Farm Girl café, Suman Brows station and Sunday Riley skincare. Cut, colour and styling services are second-to-none, and visitors can enjoy a generous library of magazines and coffee table tomes during their appointment. You could really spend all day here – and why not? Hershesons also has an outpost at Harvey Nichols and a Belgravia branch is poised to open this autumn.
29-32 Berners Street, London W1T 3LR, hershesons.com
Saco Hair, Fitzrovia
The best hair salon for: expert advice
Tucked away on a pretty lane just off Oxford Street, Saco Hair was founded in London by Aldo Furfaro and Richard Ashforth – a pair with some serious hairdressing pedigree behind them – and now boasts salons in Paris, Bordeaux, Copenhagen, Montreal, Seoul and Moscow. Happily, you'll still find Ashforth behind the scissors at the Fitzrovia outpost and, if you're not sure quite what you want, are bored of your current style or just need someone to show you how to properly care for your hair, there's no better person to turn to.
Saco offers a full colour service, as well as cut and styling options, so whether you're interested in a major style overhaul or simply need a great blowdry before a big event, this serene salon should definitely be on your radar. Saco also produces its own range of hairdressing equipment and professional products created using top-quality organic ingredients – all of which can be ordered online. Should we happen to find ourselves in another lockdown DIY hairdressing situation, we know where we're heading.
4 Charlotte Place, London W1T 1SE, sacohair.com
Michael van Clarke, Marylebone
The best hair salon for: the famed Dry Diamond Cut
Michael van Clarke opened his eponymous salon in Marylebone in 1988 when “nobody wanted to be there”. Today, the longstanding resident is famed for his trademark Dry Diamond Cut. Clarke and his team cut hair dry to enhance your hair’s natural movement, taking into consideration its weight, texture and condition. The result is a unique, sculpted style that is impossible to achieve when hair is wet. The cut is followed by a thorough wash and style, all conducted in the club-like environs of Clarke’s gorgeous salon. One session in his chair will make you rethink every haircut you’ve ever had.
1 Beaumont St, Marylebone, London W1G 6DF, vanclarke.com
Duck and Dry, various locations
The best hair salon for: blow dries
Blow dry bars have taken off in the capital in a big way over the past few years thanks, in no small part, to Duck and Dry. Founder Yulia Rorstrom opened the first branch in Chelsea in 2014 and now the group counts salons in Soho, Mayfair, Spitalfields and Islington. Known for their Instagram-friendly interiors, Prosecco bars and group styling areas, Duck and Dry is the place to go for great styling before a big night out, first date or important work pitch. Cuts are available but blow dries are really the focus, with each salon offering a series of signature 'looks' designed to cater to all hair types and occasions. Combine with a trip to Duck and Dry's on-site manicure bar to leave feeling utterly cared for.
STIL, Notting Hill
The best hair salon for: colour
Founded by Scandanavian colour maestro Christel Barron-Hough, STIL – which translates from Swedish to ‘style’ – is a minimalist, chic white cube on Notting Hill’s Chepstow Road. During an in-depth consultation, Barron-Hough will talk you through various colour options and treatments, from Lux Lights – the ultimate low-commitment due to its minimal regrowth effect – to vivid tones of warm honey, tingling copper and ‘rosé’ peach. Shades are custom-blended at the colour bar, which sits at the heart of the salon. When not on-site, Lundqvist’s team of skilled session stylists can be found backstage at fashion week or working on editorial campaigns.
2 Chepstow Road, London W2 5BH, stil-salon.com
Hari’s Hairdressers, Fulham
The best hair salon for: chemical-free dyes and plant-based treatments
Recognisable by its bold red frontage, Hari’s has been a fixture in London since the sixties, when founder Hari Salem opened his first salon in Chelsea. Bianca Jagger and the Rolling Stones were early fans, thanks to Salem’s razor-sharp cuts and clubby atmosphere. Today, it still courts an A-list client base, including Daisy Lowe and Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice. At Hari’s, there is a focus on chemical-free dyes and plant-powered products, including a sublimely spoiling Rahua conditioning treatment. There is also a deeply nourishing CBD infusion, which dramatically restores lacklustre locks. Hari’s boasts a flagship salon in Fulham, as well as outposts in Notting Hill, Parsons Green and the King’s Road.
88 Fulham Road, South Kensington, London SW3 6HR, harissalon.com
Harrods Hair & Beauty Salon, Knightsbridge
The best hair salon for: all-round pampering
Harrods opened its first Hairdressing & Manicure Department in 1894 and this month builds on that beauty legacy with an incredible new 16,985 square foot hair and beauty salon that promises to cater to all your pampering needs under one roof. Offering far more than a classic cut and blow dry (although they do that too), the vast spaces features a Backwash Room in which to treat yourself to a 'facial for the scalp' inspired by Japanese head spa rituals, a Conditioning Bar from which to select a custom hydrating treatment and a hair extension library to help guests get the long, luscious locks they've always dreamed of.
RH London, Knightsbridge
The best hair salon for: extensions
Vying for London’s most impressive salon storefront, RH London specialises in ethical Richy Hair – considered one of the world’s most prestigious hair extension brands, available in no less than 42 shades for a perfect colour match. Positioned on west London's supremely smart Walton Street, the salon is spread across a three-storey townhouse. From the slick backwash station beneath a beautiful skylight to secluded enclaves for VIP clients, RH London feels more like a private residence than a hairdresser, complete with a serene roof terrace. The salon stocks the entire Davines product line – an indication of its commitment to chemical-free, eco-conscious products.
65 Walton Street, London SW3 2HT, rh-london.com
The best hair salon for: personalised cuts and a warm welcome
Having been an integral part of SW10's thriving beauty scene for more than 12 years, the mission at Lockonego is simple: great cuts tailored to your exact needs and an atmosphere that makes you feel like one of the family. Co-founded by Ben Cooke and Jonny Long (who is also behind the Saunders & Long grooming line), the pair count stars including the Beckhams and Carey Mulligan among their fans, and offer a range of services to suit even the most exacting of customers. As well as a full range of colour, cut and blow dry options, Lockonego's Hair Hospital is a go-to for anyone who's mistreated their locks, with remedies on offer to cure split ends, brassy blondes and dehydrated hair. They even offer specialised cuts for children.
The best hair salon for: organic haircare and a sustainable-first approach
Glasshouse takes sustainability seriously: a vanguard in eco-conscious haircare, its Organic Colour System launched more than two decades ago with a focus on chemical-free, performance-driven products, packed full of organic and natural ingredients. Glasshouse partners with the Green Salon Collective, which aims to reduce waste in the hairdressing industry. Hard-to-dispose-of materials, such as colour foils, are safely recycled or composted and 100% of all profits go to Haircuts 4 Homeless and FareShare, a UK-wide charity working to relieve food poverty and reduce food waste.
The light-filled, minimalist salon space tempers industrial features with lots of trailing greenery, and there is also a wonderfully stocked shop, featuring eco-friendly, independent brands including Austin Austin, Wabi Skincare and Homework.
139 Mare Street, London E8 3RH, glasshouseshop.co.uk
The best hair salon for: hairdressing with heart
If you believe a good haircut shouldn't cost the earth then Shoreditch's Bond salon is the place for you. Designed to feel like an upscale apartment, this intimate salon is as much a place to hang out and relax as it is to get a really great set of highlights. All products used are vegan and cruelty-free, with Redken colour and R+Co shampoos, conditioners and styling products being the brands of choice. Cutting, colour and blow dries are all on the menu, alongside a range of hair remedies design to rehydrate and reconstruct damaged and dry locks.
Blue Tit, various locations
The best hair salon for: perfectly laidback cuts
Blue Tit opened its first salon in 2011. It now boasts ten locations across London in Dalston, Dulwich, Clapton, Stratford, Brockley, Streatham, Crouch Hill and Portobello. This trendy group courts young creatives, drawn to the relaxed, contemporary cuts, stylish interiors and complimentary wine and cocktails. A Saturday afternoon in Blue Tit is often better than the night out that follows.
Crab Salad, Peckham
Best hair salon for: creative cuts and colour
A quick glance at the website of this intriguingly named salon in Peckham and it becomes obvious this is a place that doesn't take itself too seriously – even while committing itself fully to helping you get the best hair of your life. A hair salon aimed squarely at the Instagram generation, the group of young stylists behind the scissors at Crab Salad, many of whom are Blue Tit alumni, are happy to give you a quick trim but are really capable of so much more. Have a sharp fashion-forward cut or unusual colour in mind? This is the salon for you.