Attention to detail is an obsession of every professional in the Environment salon team. Virtually everyone has a Sassoon-trained heritage, so the disciplines of precision cutting and colouring techniques reign supreme, progressing from the corporate boundaries freeing creativity.
The happy smiley, face you see behind the desk when you step into Environment is that of Tieu Ly (pronounced Sue-lie.) As the salon’s very-efficient receptionist, she has been manning the desk from day one and loves every minute of keeping the salon running seamlessly smooth.
“It’s so important to make clients feel welcomed and cared for,” says Tieu Ly. “I know all of our regulars and am very good at recognising their voices on the phone, which always seems to impress them,” says the happy, bubbly receptionist.
“I make sure our clients get well and truly looked after, I’m always aware if someone is waiting and do what I can to make their wait as comfortable as possible, getting them whatever they need, whether it’s complimentary refreshments or a sandwich for lunch.”
Front of house
Anthony Keast (to give him his full name), a creative hairdresser with roots in the North, has found his niche in the heart of London as co-owner of Environment.
When a teenager, he had his sights set on being an architect, but the idea of eight years training didn’t fit his impatience of youth. His hairdressing light bulb moment was while watching an impressive Vidal Sasson hair show with some hairdresser pals.
Keast trained at Sassoon and cut a creative swath in a 20-year career with the company, recognising the right moment to spurn the corporate world to create the salon he’d always visualised: a warm, welcoming, creative and happy place with an open door for discerning clients and like-minded hairdressers to share.
“It took ages to think of the name, but once we hit upon Environment it worked just perfectly,” says Keast. “Ours is a friendly, expressive environment where we encourage staff to be creative, work together and feel part of the family.
Keast works five days a week on the salon floor, the demands of his loyal clientele meaning that if you’d like to experience his strong hairdressing technique and personalised finishing – best you book in advance!
Joint owner of Environment is Kiyoshi Inoue – or Kiyo as he prefers to be known – who holds 16 years of hairdressing experience in his skilled hands. Coming to London from his native Copenhagen, he learnt his craft on Sassoon’s nine-month Diploma Course.
A very fast learner, just seven months after joining the company’s staff training scheme, Kiyo was on the salon floor building a clientele. Progressing to reach the dizzying heights of Creative Director in Sassoon’s training department – he felt the need to go it alone.
“I wanted the freedom to manage and express myself,” explains Kiyo, a practising Buddhist. “I didn’t want to be constrained by corporate rules or brand limitations,” says this man whose finger is rarely off the pulse of creativity. “I love to live in the now and react to what art and life and my team put in front of me.”
Kiyo works on the salon floor four days a week, creating superb, precision cut styles for an extraordinarily reasonable £105.
“I think Environment probably offers the best value for money in the whole of central London,” says Kiyo. “Everyone in the team has outstanding hairdressing skills and gives great service and hair treatments in a warm, friendly and caring environment. It’s a salon where you feel at home because we care absolutely for our clients’ look, wellbeing and peace of mind.”
Patsy has been working at Environment from day one. A skilled colourist, she started her Sassoon training in 1993 and now has 24 years of practical, on the salon floor experience under her fashionable belt.
Working on a complete cross section of clients 4 days a week, her salon colleagues automatically pass their clients over to Patsy, knowing their haircuts will look all the better after being enhanced with her deft tinting techniques.
“I chose to work as a colourist rather than a cutter because I was interested in the science behind the art, as well as the immediate impact you can create with colour.”
“Our salon is very strong on colour and I’d say about 80% of our clients have colour to some degree. I’m absolutely obsessed with working in a methodical, organised way and my favourite type of work is to simply create beautifully clean, shiny hair colour which totally works for the client.”
Maria was 19 when qualifying at Vidal Sassoon's, since then she has worked in the Middle East and other top salons in London before settling in Environment.
Originally from Nottingham, life as an artist originally appealed, but it’s all down to her mother that hairdressing became Maria’s destiny when they moved to London. “Mum saw an ad for Sassoon trainees and I got the job out of 25 applicants,” Maria explains. “I took to hairdressing immediately as it released my inner creativity. I totally blossomed and met the best of my friends when training at Sassoon.”
A brilliant communicator, she listens intently to what her clients say, never failing to deliver against their expectations. “My work is technical, but I always bring freedom into my techniques, working visually with the client to make sure it’s suitable. I really care they get something which really suits them and is easy to maintain.”
Level 4 Stylist
After training in a salon and college in her home city of Tokyo, Azu came to London ten years ago to perfect her cutting skills at the Sassoon Academy. “I just wanted to be the absolute best at cutting,” says the Japanese hairdresser dedicated to her precision scissor work.
Working five days a week, Azu makes sure she takes account of personality and lifestyle before designing someone’s look. “It’s so important they can look after their style, manage it easily themselves,” she explains.
Azu much enjoys her London clientele. “In London, people are more adventurous and there are so many different nationalities and hair types, it makes my work much more interesting,” says the nifty cutter, who races round a basket ball court on her day off...
Level 3 Stylist
Joining the salon straight from school to be taught by masters of their craft Keast & Kiyo has led to Nicola being pretty nifty with her scissors.
She loves the day-to-day freshness of meeting new people, working together with them to find an individual look. "I love working hard in the salon so my client's can create the same style at home with ease"
Private time sees her iPod in action playing the newest tunes or at the cinema taking in the latest film. And long term? “Just be the best I can, work hard to excel at what I do.”
Nicola's days are limited so book her in advance to grab her skills!
Level 2 Stylist
After studying Fashion for a short time before following her passion in hair, Eloise now specialises in colour.
"I'm Fascinated by the science and the endless possibilities colour combinations provide. I love the effect hair colour has on someones appearance, seeing how it makes them feel. There is something very special about helping making someone feel good about themselves."
Most of her free time is spent on City Breaks, painting and in a bid to keep fit has recently taken up Judo, but you can find Elle 5 days a week in environment.
Cut, Dry & Finish
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5 Creative Director
£45 £55 £65 £85 £90 £105
Blow Dry / Styling
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5 Creative Director
£25 £35 £45 £48 £50 £55
Highlights Half Head
Highlights Full Head
Bleach and Toner
Balayage / Ombré
Semi-permanent Blow Dry
Level 1 Colourist
Level 2 Colourist
System Professional Infusion
"72" intense Gold
£10 off on treaments when in conjunction with any other service.
20% discount applies on all services for under 16's and students Monday - Thursday (valid student card required)
Come and work with forward-thinking hairdressers in London
– where creativity rides high and passion for excellence is relentless – contact Environment if this is what you want! We offer the best of working conditions and the finest training alongside inspirational hairdressers who are as friendly as they are talented.
Nearest tube is Bond Street
station. Alternatively it is a
10min walk from Baker street
or Oxford circus
Ground floor shop
8 Duke Street
0207 935 2800