How to have hassle-free hair on your next holiday

With niu&nau salons opening in Taj properties, bad hair days on holiday could be a thing of the past. We give you the lowdown on keeping your locks lovely in every locale.
Hair 5
Hassle-free hair on holiday. Image: Shutterstock/VAndreas

The Taj group have reimagined their salons niu&nau, to help you achieve a new you, now. These unisex salons bring a full regimen of services spanning hair, beauty, and skincare. They’ve started with the Taj Land’s End and Taj Wellington Mews in Mumbai, and the Taj MG Road in Bengaluru, with plans to bring the distinctive design and cutting-edge treatments delivered by professional stylists and beauticians to other city hotels soon.

Along with a pleasingly laid out salon space, with private treatment rooms and a gentleman’s barbering section, state-of-the-art equipment, they have partnerships with some of the hottest beauty brands such as MoroccanOil, Paul Mitchell & L’Oreal, Truefitt & Hill, OPI, Thalgo (Skin Care) & Cirépil by Perron Rigot. niu&nau emphasises the use of eco-friendly and chemical-free products.

My experience at niu&nau

Hair 6
The niu&nau salon at Taj Wellington Mews, Colaba, Mumbai. Image: Priya Pathiyan.

I found that the salon experience at niu&nau Taj Wellington Mews merged expertise with personalisation to create an elevated offering. It was extremely relaxing, especially with the rainswept Gulmohar trees from their picture windows seemingly swaying gently to the melodious instrumental music playing softly inside. Cheery Spa Manager Laila Naterwala did a quick assessment and prescribed the perfect hair spa treatment, while graciously plying me with a purifying Vishuddhi herbal concoction that turned out to be deliciously uplifting.

Hair 10
Salon with a view. Image: Priya Pathiyan.

My niu&nau expert therapist Archana went about her work expertly and non-intrusively. She washed my dry and slightly frizzy hair with the Awapuhi moisturising lather shampoo, then worked in the Awapuhi keratin cream rinse to nourish it. I was happy to know that the Awapuhi products are paraben free, sulphate free, cruelty free, and colour safe, so ideal for chemically processed hair.

Hair 9
The Awapuhi and MoroccanOil hair products that the niu&nau team used for my hydrating hair spa. Image: Priya Pathiyan.

Next came the application of Hydratriplex Hydrating Shots, which allowed the triple action of Paul Mitchell’s exclusive technology to deeply penetrate the hair strands and hydrate, bind and seal them with rich moisturising ingredients like white ginger root extract, awapuhi, camellia extract, and Abyssinian oil. This gave my hair a lovely salon-fresh sheen and softness.

Niu&nau, salon, spa, hair, taj hotels
Result! Image: Priya Pathiyan.

Expert tips for hair care while travelling

According to one of the MoroccanOil brand consultants associated with niu&nau, there are simple ways to make sure that your hair doesn’t bear the brunt of travel stress. Apparently, there are multiple factors that can impact your hair when you travel, ranging from air-conditioners, city smog or pollution, bright sun, rainy weather, salty seawater, chlorine-ridden pools and water in the shower! The travel in itself – departing from an area of a certain ambience and arriving at a destination that’s, say, 30 degrees lower in temperature will naturally generate a physiological ‘shock’ to your hair and body.

You should be able to flaunt your hair wherever, whenever, and grab eyeballs with those pictures you click as you explore the world. Be it travel on work or for pleasure, your hair shouldn’t be a cause of concern. Here are some tips from the expert to help you put your hair worries aside and get on with your travel agenda…

Hair 2
A loose braid looks stylish, keeps holiday hair protected and makes it more manageable. Image: Shutterstock/Luna Marina.
  • In order to protect your skin and hair from devastation, know the climate of your planned destination, before travelling. Research the weather of the place and pack your essentials according to that. Travel with your own hair care kit. This will save your time, energy and skin.
  • Moisturise your hair before and during your flight.
  • Give your tresses an instant refresh with dry shampoo.
  • Don’t expose your hair by wearing it loose all the time while travelling. Either tie it in a loosely twisted bun or put it in in braids. This looks stylish while protecting it from dust and dirt.
  • Shield your hair from the sun, as sunlight can damage your tresses and make it look dry and rough. Wear a hat or a scarf, while travelling, especially when out in the sun. Another option is to put some UV protecting spray on your hair. This will make sure that your hair does not burn or get overheated.
  • Oil your hair lightly before you get into the salty waters by the beach.
  • Cover your hair before jumping into the swimming pool.
  • If you get wet in the rain, be sure to not let it remain wet for long.
  • Use prescribed leave-in conditioners and detangling products to manage your tresses, but don’t let the products stay in and get built up for too long. Washing regularly to ensure this, is key.
  • Trim your locks regularly if you are a frequent traveller. This helps greatly in avoiding split ends and maintaining overall hygiene.
  • Avoid chemical, heat treatments and electrical styling equipment – the less the better!
  • If you are particular about salon-like styling tools, carry your basic equipment with you. And use these in a measured manner. If you are not carrying your tools, then use heatless hairstyles that naturally suit you and your day’s agenda. Some of these tools (not all) don’t work the same in countries/cities where the voltage settings vary, so you also run the risk of blowing a fuse on your equipment!
Hair 3

Leave your hat on. Image: Pexels/Zhanna Fort.

Read more.

Marketplace: A ‘solid’ way to save the Earth

Five interesting Indian spa therapies that will rejuvenate you

Bookmark these spas in the Himalayas for your next wellness holiday