Drybar arrives in Kakaako

My good hair days are the ones when I exit a salon.

I always aim for tousled, beachy locks, and natural waves work in my favor. I’m told to scrunch up the ends of my hair with styling products but have yet to find one able to hold up to my heavy tresses. So what looks good coming out of a salon just doesn’t live up to the reality of upkeep once I’m left to my own devices.

Enter Drybar, which made its Kakaako debut Friday. My first thought was, how many people are lazy enough have to be to have someone else wash and blowout their hair at $45 per visit?

Apparently, lots.

A friend explained, “Every office building should have one. It’ll help so much for us who are running to work with untamed hair.”

Like the name suggests, the salon does “No (hair)cuts. No color. Just blowouts,” based on founder Alli Webb’s simple philosophy, “Focus on one thing and be the best at it.”

It’s paid off. The Honolulu shop is Drybar’s 93rd location nationwide, located across from SALT, on the ground floor of The Collection at 600 Ala Moana Boulevard, where clients are greeted with a beverage of their choice, such as mimosas, wine, tea or cola.

Webb, a longtime professional stylist who grew tired of overpaying for blowouts at traditional salons, offers a menu of signature styles that also reads like a cocktail menu:


Sarah Sandoval works her magic. Braids will hold up for a day or two and she said she expects Drybar will get slammed during prom season, which is coming up fast.

During the opening, Drybar educator Sarah Sandoval was on hand to demonstrate:

> The Cosmo: Lots of loose curls.
> The Straight Up: For straight that needs a little body).
> The Mai Tai: Messy, beachy hair perfect for Hawaii, but popular across the country.
> The Manhattan: Sleek and smooth.
> The crown braid: For special nights out.

The process takes about 30 to 40 minutes, including hair washing, and Sandoval said many of their customers no longer keep shampoo or conditioners at home, stopping by for all their haircare.

While styles generally last two to five days, some are able to keep the styles for up to 10 days. A consultation always starts with figuring out a clients expectations. Some aim to maintain their hair while on a trip, so the stylist must take into account travel time, which wreaks havoc on hair. Saving your hairstyle could be a matter of rolling your hair up each night in Princess Leia-style buns and using bobby pins to secure them.

Used on models were some of Drybar’s hair styling products and tools, with names like The Sheriff medium-hold hairspray, Sparkling Soda shine mist and Money Maker flexible hold spray, all designed for the hair you want. A plus for me was the light scents that don’t have the choke factor of other hair products.

Drybar Honolulu is at 600 Ala Moana Blvd. Suite 1A. Hours (subject to change) are 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays to Wednesdays; 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursdays to Fridays; 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturdays; and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays. Appointments can be booked online at thedrybar.com, or through the Drybar iPhone app.

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By Nadine Kam