Five minutes with Moj Kazemi

Nicole Slater meets the founder of Tala’s Hair and Beauty Boutique

WHO: Moj Kazemi

From the age of 15 Moj Kazemi knew she wanted to be a hairdresser. Her career began in America, where she landed a job styling for the stars in California. “I am very lucky to be in this industry and have a job I love,” says Kazemi. 

She moved to Hong Kong in 1995 and was offered a job in Clearwater Bay by Mr. Jean Pierre Phillips, and soon fell in love with Sai Kung’s friendly residents and ocean views. 

WHERE: Sai Kung

After three years living and working in Clearwater Bay, Kazemi decided it was time to open her own salon in Sai Kung, Tala’s Hair & Beauty Boutique. “I always wanted to own my own salon. It suits me and I love it.” Over the past quarter of a century, the salon has become the go-to place for a cut, colour and an afternoon glass of wine. 

Due to Kazemi’s hands-on approach in the salon, many people mistake her for being called Tala. “I named the salon after my daughter, but people always call me Tala – which makes me smile.”

Hair maintenance in Hong Kong is different from anywhere else in the world

While many long-term residents may remember Tala’s on Po Tung Road, with the iconic Burgundy coloured doors and hand-painted artwork by Derek Bailey, the salon moved to its current location on See Cheung Street in 2017. “Moving was the best thing for us. Clients love our new space.”

WHAT: Managing Director & Tala’s Exclusive Stylist

Despite the move, Tala’s Hair & Beauty Boutique has maintained its loyal customer base and has gone from strength to strength. The pandemic was another bump in the road for the salon. “Business shocks are inevitable. Thankfully, hair salons were not ordered shut by the government. We adapted by closing an extra day, cutting expenses and dropping into survival mode. We also created recycling initiatives, such as inviting clients to bring in bottles for refilling hair products – which has been very successful,” says Kazemi. 

Despite facing SARS, rent increases, protests and the pandemic, Kazemi believes her biggest obstacle is finding professional hair stylists to work in Sai Kung, “this has been and continues to be my biggest challenge since the day we opened.” 

With the summer months in full swing, Kazemi is helping clients manage their frizz and other hair challenges. “Hair maintenance in Hong Kong is different from anywhere else in the world. The humidity makes it much more difficult to control, so I like to give my clients guidance on how to manage and control their hair.” 
Pop by the salon and say hello on the first floor of 37 See Cheung Street, Sai Kung. talashair.com

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