Happy Valley

It’s not every hair salon that sees you battle near-death addiction

During a trip to the salon, Charlotte Cripps looks in the mirror with her mask on and wonders what her mum and Alex would make of her life now?

Wednesday 19 August 2020 13:41 BST
(Amara May)

It’s my first trip to a hair salon since coronavirus hit. I’m checking in at the reception desk with its plastic screen and staff who are wearing face visors. Good God. Who would have thought this sight possible six months ago when I last came in for a quick trim?

The salon is a bit of a celebrity haunt in Fitzrovia, near London’s West End – full of Conde Nast fashion editors and models. Why am I here then, you might ask? I get a discount as my friend works here. But also, this salon holds a very nostalgic place in my heart.

I used to come here as a 13-year-old with my mum before she died of cancer. The hair salon sent flowers to her funeral – that’s how close they were. In the depths of my addiction, I would slide off my chair mid-haircut. It’s not every hair salon that has seen you battle through near-death into recovery.

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