Studio Tour: McKinnon Hair Design


Haircuts give us both anxiety. To limit the number of panic stricken texts we would send each other after a visit to the salon, we just started going together. Now let me explain. While all the chic girls are chopping their hair 'au carré' right now, I have worked that style since I was in middle school. Partially because I liked the ease and edge shorter hair offered. And partially because I am impatient, impulsive and would make impromptu decisions at the salon like, "Go ahead, cut as much as you like." Chop, chop. As such, long tresses were just never in my cards. A couple years ago, I decided to give it a try and grow out my hair. Jacklyn has beautiful, long, flowing locks that make you feel like you are constantly looking at a Pantene commercial. It's hair you can't compete with, but I was curious if that length would suit me. I stayed clear of scissors for about two years. And now I can't look back.

Towards the end of summer last year, Jacklyn and I were both in need of a serious trim. That's when we met Cameron Elder, a Creative Director at McKinnon Hair Design and decided to put our faith in his hands. We'd seen the pop-up window hairdressing he was doing at the monthly art crawls and loved his style and energy. We'd never been to McKinnon, but we made appointments and away we went with an open mind. We felt totally spoiled by owners Christine, Andy and their team-- sipping on Detour lattes, reading Vogue Paris, enjoying tailor-made Shu Uemera hair treatments at the intimate salon. Understanding our scissor anxiety, Cameron promised we wouldn't need another haircut for six months. And he was right. When February crept around, we counted back and realized it has been awhile since our last cut. The true test of how much you like a hairstylist's work is when it comes time for another. I scheduled an appointment, arrived armed with photos of Gaia Repossi,  Daphné Hezard and Caroline de Maigret. And appreciated that Cameron can decipher what I mean when I say total girl things like "I like when hair looks undone" or "It's quite blunt right now, I would prefer it to feel really light at the ends." I love the results and can't wait to see how Jacklyn's hair  looks after her next appointment.


I'm a natural brunette that opts for warmer, deeper tones in the winter and brighter highlights in the summer. Depending on the light, my hair photographs red for whatever reason. I always think your roots should be your natural colour and highlights should be natural and soft. A lot of girls prefer the more defined ombré look, but it looks cheap on me. When the warmer months approach and I feel inclined to brighten up my highlights, I'm hoping Cameron will try out the balayage technique -- a French freehand colouring technique where colour is applied by hand. It creates more natural looking depth and dimension than traditional foils.


We love the Shu Uemera ceremonies that McKinnon offers. They are tailored to the condition of your hair and enhance its manageability. 



While we were at the salon, we saw Liz from Needlework. Co-owner Christine is offering an amazing deal for the small business community in Hamilton right now -- free cuts, colours, styles for new business owners throughout the month of February. We love seeing our friends and colleagues going and getting pampered and enjoying the services as much as we do. It's a really wonderful way for McKinnon Hair Design to connect with new business owners and give back to the community that has supported the salon for over 30 years.

McKinnon Hair Design
111 Balsam Avenue S.
Hamilton, Ontario
L8M 3B4