Here’s What It’s Like To Have Your Hair Done in a Japanese Salon

In Japan, beauty is serious business. While in the Philippines, beauty salons can just sprout like mushrooms to cater to just about anyone who walks through their doors, it’s not quite the case in Japan. In fact, if you’re training to be a hairstylist in Japan, it can take years before you can actually cut customers’ hair!

So when Kiyosa Japanese Total Beauty in BGC finally offered hair services by their Japanese chief hairstylist, you just know you’re going to be treated to first-class service by an expert.

Don’t expect your usual beauty salon when you step into Kiyosa — Kiyosa’s interiors are effortlessly elegant with Asian minimalist touches, doing away with the overtly glamorous decor as commonly seen in salons around Manila. Everything is predominantly white, offering a pristine look.

Kiyosa Japanese Total Beauty first opened in 2014, offering intricate nail art and eyelash extension services, using only Japanese premium products and state-of-the-art tools. Similar to their hairstylists, their “nailists” and eyelash extension technicians undergo extensive training and earn their licenses before they can service customers. Since opening, beauty fans in the metro have long raved about beautiful and well-cared for nails by Kiyosa, as well as the gorgeous eyelash extensions, minus the horror stories. The hair section is the latest addition to the Kiyosa Total Beauty experience, which would definitely not disappoint their beloved customers.

Sumiko Fukami, the chief hairstylist at Kiyosa, had had over 13 years of hairstyling experience and rigorous training in Japan, including getting a two-year degree in hairstyling. Sumiko-san has been in the Philippines for 2 1/2 years and still cuts customers’ hair, while actively training local staff. Keeping in with the rigorous discipline as is done in Japan, local staff are not allowed to cut hair until they are duly licensed and meet Sumiko-san’s standards of cutting hair.

My “before” look!

What I liked about consulting with Sumiko-san on what she was going to do with my hair was that she makes sure to put your preferences above everything else, and she makes sure to get every single detail right. I’m a fan of the Japanese modern minimalist style, so I wasn’t coming out with an outrageous hair color.

Instead, I went with a classic and versatile color that looks very natural. I brought a photo with me as a peg, and she was very patient enough to explain the process I would have to go through to achieve that look. As it turns out, the photo I showed had a warmer and more reddish color than what I originally wanted, which she quickly pointed out.

Unlike in other salons, Kiyosa has no hair dye swatches, where customers choose from a range of colors at will. Instead, Kiyosa creates the color from scratch, which was why it was also important for Sumiko-san to make sure that she got the right color. And boy, was it spot on. The color, as explained to me after the entire process, was an ash brown base with beige highlights.

To achieve the color I wanted, however, Sumiko-san informed me that I would have bleach my hair. At first I was iffy about having my hair bleached, but they assured me that the products they would use were milder than most, reducing the risk of hair damage.

Sumiko-san goes through the motions with a deft hand of a highly experienced hairstylist, with her actions so precise and effortless. I initially planned on getting just about two inches cut, yet Sumiko-san convinced me to get full layers to achieve the effect I wanted, while still framing my face well. I gamely went along, of course, as I fully trusted her insights.

Before my hair was cut, I was also treated to their Damage Control Treatment, which is perfect for those who have gotten their hair dyed. While I grew out my previously dyed hair for more than a year that they were pretty much at the ends now, they had still sustained damage nonetheless and would benefit from restoration. Also, the damage control treatment paired perfectly with the bleach I had just gotten that day, to preserve the healthy condition of my tresses.

In the end, I was COMPLETELY satisfied with how my hair turned out. Sumiko-san had gotten what I wanted to a T, and more. Even the color, which she formulated from scratch, turned out perfectly, and even she was so proud and happy with how it turned out.

If you’re looking for an upgrade from the usual salon experience, give Kiyosa Japanese Total Beauty Salon a shot. They offer premium services that are reasonably priced, and with the team of experts that they have, it’s easy to feel secure and experiment with your look.

KIYOSA Japanese Total Beauty
Ground Floor, F1 Hotel, 32nd Street, Cor. Lane Q,
Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City
Hotline: (+63-2)805-8888 / 0939-9158888

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