One of the things I love most about London is that for every chain brand dotted along the city’s high streets, just a stone’s throw away you’ll stumble across independent gems that offer a far superior customer experience. Not that there’s anything wrong
with a chain of course; I’ve certainly had a perfectly good cut and colour at many over the years, but there’s something comforting in knowing you’re supporting the independent business of someone following their dreams.
Chiswick’s [b]MAYFIVE[/B] was founded by Katie Allan in 2018, set back from the bustle of Chiswick High Road down a quaint leafy side street, peppered with cosy local cafes and bedecked with bunting. After 14 years the industry, Katie created her dream salon with a calm interior, a space full of tropical plants and cute neon lighting. I loved the bright, airy atmosphere and the wall of fairy lights interspersed with polaroids of happy customers in the backwash area made for a unique memory book of happy haircuts past. She’s clearly doing something right, as MAYFIVE was a finalist in the 2019 Best New Boutique Salon Awards, something of an achievement just a year after opening its doors.
I visited early doors one Saturday morning and within half an hour the salon filled up with what were obviously regulars, chattily catching up with their favourite stylists about families and holidays, bringing a real sense of community to the place. An Olaplex treatment and trim later and my bouncy barnet was in much better condition than it was when I walked in and I had a spring in my step from a glass of fizz and a good old natter.
Throughout her career, Katie has worked as a stylist at London’s Fashion Week and been an ambassador for L’Oreal, both Nationally and Internationally as a Colour Degree Expert, meaning colour is something of a salon speciality. An industry leader, Katie also created her own technique known as Layage and as a pioneer in the industry, is constantly developing new techniques and hair trends. With sustainability high on the agenda, the salon also use reusable foam foil alongside many natural, ethical products, so customers can rest assured you have the best quality products and no harsh chemicals ruining your hair.
I loved it, the only downside being I wish it was closer to home; nevertheless, I can certainly see myself making that trip to Chiswick for a repeat visit.