Curly/Afro Hair, Hairdressers, Review

Ombre Hair @ Darren Scott Salon, London

22 Comments 06 June 2012

As part of our good black hairdressers in London guide and after admiring ombre afro hair from afar for longer than I care to remember, I finally took the plunge at the new Darren Scott Salon in Maida Vale.

Armed with images of what I did (and didn’t) want, I nervously took my seat in the waiting area. Let’s start with a review of the salon. Despite being in yummy mummy-ville, the salon is completely unpretentious and friendly and we were instantly made to feel welcome.

Inspiration board

The place has a rather informal, even community vibe about it – people were popping in simply to say hi to the staff, to wish a fellow customer happy birthday and they even let a rather frightened looking school girl use the loo! There are six stylist stations and the staff are experienced in working with Afro, European and Asian hair.

Celebrity MUA and Hair Stylist Darren (Katy Perry, SWV, Faith Evans) sat me down and we looked through the L’Oreal Colour System book trying to decide which colours would work best on me. I was under the impression that blonde was out of the question but he told me that really, any shade can work (even on a chocolate coloured complexion like mine) but I erred on the side of caution and went for a red/brown hybrid with a few highlights to frame my face.

Mid colouring…

The L’Oreal Majirel Colour System was used – apparently it was 7.3 mixed with green magimix as green cancels red to stop the colour looking brassy. He prefers not to use bleach on afro hair and I was doubtful that my very black hair could be made lighter without its use but he assured me it was possible. Bleach on any hair is bad news but while European hair can more often than not handle it, putting bleach on afro hair – especially relaxed hair – usually ends in tears. Yours; as your precious strands deteriorate before your eyes.

As we weren’t using bleach, it took ages for the colour to take on my hair. I’m talking over an hour. I’d rather spend my time reading trashy mags in the salon than have my hair turn to trash so I was quite prepared for the long wait.

When it was washed out (after a divine shiatsu head massage) Darren and I commented that the colour wasn’t as bright as we liked. He said to wait until it was dry which made all the difference. Look:

The finished product

In actual fact, the flash and the salon lighting make the black of my hair and the new colour look lighter than they are.

Darren used two pumps of Label M Relaxing Balm on my towel dried hair before adding a 5p size of argan oil. He blow dried with a round brush which added body and cute flips on the ends.

To maintain the colour, he recommended using a colour protecting moisturising shampoo and conditioner and regular use of argan oil.

I loved the vibe of the salon and my new ombre colour. I’ve received many compliments on it and it really does brighten my face. I’ve had long black hair forever and find that ombre is a gentle way to add colour to my look.

Darren is a gem; he knows everything there is to know about hair, especially afro hair and he makes you feel like a celebrity – he listens to your wants and needs and finds a look that can work in your everyday life. He has priced his services to fit the market – no £200 blow drys here (we mean you Errol Douglas).

If you’re looking for a good black hairdresser in London, go and visit, you won’t be disappointed. It’s worth liking them on Facebook too as special offers and promotions are available to fans there.

Darren Scott Salon
117 Shirland Rd
Maida Vale
London W9 2EW

T: 020 7286 9395

Your Comments

22 Comments so far

  1. Sherene says:

    Hi Darren,

    I am super confused of whether to cut my hair and continue keeping it short (halle berry short) and adding a light color to the front or whether to add extensions in the front to create a type of sweeping fringe with short back and sides. Perhaps I should book an appointment because I am in need of help. I also want my hair to look healthy again.


    • Darren Scott says:

      Hi Sherene

      Sounds good, it really depends on what type of colour you want to achieve and how your hair is. A hair piece may be the best option in order to protect your own hair. If you wanted to go very light in would need pre-lightening possibly twice of which would significantly damage your hair.



  2. Laira says:


    Yes your hair looks great!

    Does Darren work with Mixed race hair? Im tryong to find a decent salon to have my hair cut.


    • Editor says:

      Hi Laira
      All the salons I’ve been to work on afro as well as mixed race hair. If you’re after an on trend cut I’d go to Toni & Guy in Farringdon; one of the best cuts I’ve ever had. Ask for Greg. I also like the Daniel Mikhael salon for a cut; they work well with very curly/thick hair. No shade on Darren Scott but I only had colour there, not a cut, so can’t comment on how good that service is.
      Let me know how you get on!

    • Darren Scott says:

      Hi Laira

      We have lots of Afro hair, mixed heritage hair and European customers. Lots of reviews on qype from customers with curly hair 🙂 also have some mixed heritage models we cut and style. We’re planning on doing a photo shoot soon with lots of new imagery coming soon 🙂

      Just finished a mixed heritage hair client adding in some subtle colour at the front. Will post on our twitter 🙂 which is dscottsalon



  3. Such a lovely colour, really delicate. I’ve been wanting to try a new (affordable!) hairdresser for a while. Thanks for the post!

    • Darren Scott says:

      Hi Sabrina

      Feel free to pop in for a free consultation 🙂 unlike many salons all our prices are on our website and at any consultation we can/will tell you before we start or over the phone 🙂

      The reason we have from is we did a lady who wanted colour whose hair was down to her thigh!!!! Lol



  4. SalonLoover says:

    Your hair looks fab! I was thinking of doing the same, but is this all your really hair? or part extensions? I’m afraid my real hair will fry! Lol. Thanks 🙂

    • Editor says:

      Thanks! It’s all my hair. Adding colour to it has made it a lot dryer so you’ll have to take extra care with conditioners, treatments etc.

    • Darren Scott says:

      As Madeka says, as long as you’re conditioning your hair should be fine. However, stay away from light shades as bleach will have to be used – this will fry your hair. A good colourist will be able to show you what tones can be achieved without the use of bleach. No bleach was used on Madeka’s hair.

      Also consider a style where colour is not at the root, which means it can grow out quicker, and you can get a restyle removing the colour and damaged hair if you want a change.

      We presented last night a conference and a trichologists at Philip Kingsley actually said embrace colour, it’s about having a look that you enjoy, of which can bring added confidence and well being.

      Consultations are free so feel free to pop in. Ps sorry for the late reply!!!!!


  5. Your hair looks nice. Do you mind rating this salon on It’s a salon ratings website, we are hoping to have such great reviews of London salons.

  6. Joan says:

    Looks great!


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