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How Heslyns do it

Our Avlon guest for this week is Karen Adenegan, owner of Heslyns salon in Coventry. Heslyns was established in 1979 by my Karen’s mother, Heslyn Smith. She started trading in her garage and soon realised that her fast growing clientele needed a commercial property to visit. “I worked as a secretary in an office and assisted my mother at weekends. I soon realised that I had a creative flair for hairdressing – through my love for fine art” says Karen.

Karen decided to pursue a career in hairdressing, she went back to College and attained NVQ 1 & 2 City of Guilds in basic hairdressing and thereafter qualifications in Advanced Hairdressing. Qualifying in 1982, she then began her  hairdressing career.

Heslyns was the first black salon in Coventry. The salon quickly built up a large clientele, with customers coming travelling from other cities and towns. There were days when the salon would be open until midnight to accommodate clients.  “hard work is necessary, when one is building up a new business” says Karen.


“Throughout my career, I have seen various hair trends come and go. When I first started curly perms and relaxers were the biggest hairstyle, we were also using the hot comb and thermal irons,” Karen adds.

Remembering clear as day, a sales rep walked into the salon  one day and introduced the  team to ghd hair straighteners. A breakthrough moment for every hairstylist, especially black stylists. “The amazing results made our work much easier.”

30 years forward, hairdressing has evolved – clients are enjoying their natural hair. Avlon have made it possible for clients to access products for this new market. It’s no good giving a client fab new hairstyle if they don’t know how to look after their hair at home.


The Heslyns team teach their clients the value of good haircare, by using the right products. Essentially clients are able to maintain the hairstyle or cut they left the salon with. Avlon has been the salon’s main brand for over 25 years. “The results achieved from using Avlon products speak for themselves. We have remained a busy and vibrant salon for over 40 years” says Karen.

We asked Karen…

What are your top Avlon products?
Texture Release, Affirm Relaxer and the Avlon Affirm 5 in 1 Reconstructor.

Which Avlon products so you use on your hair?
Thermal Wonder 6 in 1, KeraCare Edge Tamer and KeraCare Restorative Hair Masque. I often find that clients ask – why does your hair look healthy and I simply recommend the products that I believe in.

For more Avlon news click HERE


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