Expertise | Best Hair Salons in San Diego

Jet Rhys is an eclectic hair salon in the San Diego metro, created by former Vidal Salon styling experts. Jet and Rhys have styled Hollywood celebrities and styled the ads for ABC, Revlon, Pantene, and L’Oreal. The salon offers unparalleled, skillful styling services that include cutting, coloring, Yuko hair straightening, natural hair extensions, special treatments for occasions, and other hair treatments. It has been featured in Allure, Celebrity Hairstyles, Harper’s Bazaar, and Vogue and has been recognized as one of the top salons in the U.S by InStyle’s Beauty Black Book and Self magazine.

Meet Trailblazer Jet Rhys

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jet Rhys.

Jet Rhys Salon was founded in 1992 by Jet and Rhys two former Vidal Sassoon hair specialists from New York. They have more than 25 years of experience working and teaching in Vidal Sassoon academies and salons, but are perhaps best known for their hip and modern approach to beauty and fashion. Prior to founding Jet Rhys Salon, the pair traveled on the Vidal Sassoon International Show Team teaching and inspiring hairdressers in London, Japan, Mexico, Australia, and Europe.

Located in San Diego, California, Jet Rhys Salon is an architectural masterpiece synonymous with superb hair design and technique. Each member of the Jet Rhys team is an expert in his or her field and has been personally trained by Jet and Rhys. Their ongoing education program ensures their team stays up to date with the hottest looks and trends from around the world. At Jet Rhys Salon, stylists strive to look beyond a clients’ bone structure and skin tone to find their real persona and create the perfect hairstyle. Jet always says, “Hair is in our DNA.”

Not only has Jet Rhys Salon styled hair for Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, but have been featured in numerous fashion and beauty publications such as Harper’s Bazaar, Allure and W Magazine. Jet and Rhys were also recently recognized by Elle magazine as one of the top salon teams in the United States.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
With any business, there will be some bumps and challenges. Moving from New York City to beautiful San Diego has been such a positive experience that afforded us the opportunity to open Jet Rhys Salon, which originated in Hillcrest, San Diego. We loved the neighborhood and the vibe of the location. After some time, we realized that the parking Hillcrest was a huge challenge for our clients. There were no parking lots available and the meters only allow two hours maximum to park.

Parking tickets were a buzz kill for us and our beautiful clients which I felt absolutely ruined the entire Jet Rhys experience. It was essential that we find another location that had ample parking and easy access to all freeways. We searched everywhere in San Diego and found our perfect space in Solana Beach. We couldn’t be happier.

We’d love to hear more about Jet Rhys Hair salon.
What do you get when you combine a world-class colorist and image-making guru with a precision haircutter and global educator? Jet Rhys Salon in Solana Beach! Jet and Rhys, the salon’s co-owners, have taught on stages at hair shows around the world and are proud to have been selected for the ABC Premier Event at the Shrine Auditorium to style the stars of hit TV shows and satisfied thousands of local style aficionados.

Known for her upbeat wit, and her innovative, unparalleled passion for color, Jet’s motto is, “look, study and attack.” An absolute maestro in working with natural color and skin tones, eyebrows, hair texture and bone structure to create a harmonious, signature style. She evolves the looks of the clients in her chair based on honest beauty. It starts with creating the perfect, healthy canvas for color. Jet focuses on the ideal image evolution. Rhys’ cult following comes from his ability to read hair like a book. His precision cuts and incredible styles are as personalized as DNA, which is why clients drive hundreds of miles just for a Rhys haircut.

Also, focusing on style evolution, he has the ability to make changes that work with lifestyle shifts, switching from short textured cuts to long swingy styles with ease. If you are transitioning lengths or layers and have problems with grow-out, Rhys is the go-to guy for the fix. Jet Rhys’ styles and advice have been published in national consumer publications, including Allure, Elle, Vogue, Self, Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, and Seventeen. She has also been featured on high traffic websites such as Daily Candy and Pop Sugar.

Their eclectic, creative, San Diego salon is as welcoming and relaxing for celebrities, as it is for their diverse clientele. Known as the beauty destination of those in the know, Jet Rhys’ team is as highly trained in their respective specialties as they are in business, client care, and etiquette.

Which women have inspired you in your life?
At the age of six, I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I loved going to my Gram’s Beauty Salon. I loved my Gram, I loved the smell of her salon, I would watch her work and make women feel and look beautiful. She loved her career, she loved her clients, she absolutely loved everything about hair! I would frequently say to her, “Gram, I am going to be just like you someday.”


Deluxe Haircuts starts at $ 69.00
Deluxe Hair color starts at $80.00
Flawless Extensions priced upon consultation
Ever so smooth Keratin smoothing treatment
Deluxe men’s cuts start at $69.00
Weddings perfect finish for your special day priced upon consultation
Contact Info:

Address: 437 South Highway 101, suite 205 Solana Beach, CA 92075
Phone: 1-858-345-1895
Instagram: @jetrhyshair
Facebook: Jet Rhys Salon
Twitter: @jetrhyshair
Other: Jet Rhys Public Figure

Short Styles | Can You Pull Off The Bowl?

It’s official. The bowl cut is back. Yup, the signature haircut of Moe Howard of the Three Stooges in the 1930s is fashionable once again. The style has since evolved, though, with stars like Rihanna sporting it now. Want to try out the updated version?

Ask your stylist to make it mod by using more layers than back-in-the-day bowls had. Also strands should be texture-cut with a razor to deconstruct the outline and perimeter, according to Jet Rhys, owner of Jet Rhys salon in Solana Beach, CA. Your hair type matters too. If you’ve got straight, thick locks, you can easily pull off the look, according to Rhys. If your mane is fine/thin, steer clear, since there’s just not enough bulk to create the desired shape. But if you’ve been blessed with good bone structure, like rocking cheekbones, you should go for it–the bowl will place those fantastic features center stage.

Hairshow | Want Oomph? Fake a Fauxhawk

“For great volume, pretend you’re creating a Mohawk down the top center of your head,” says Jet Rhys, owner, Jet Rhys Salon, Solana Beach, CA. Here are her steps:

1. Take a 1-inch section of hair near the top of the head on the right side and wrap it around your brush vertically to create root lift.

2. Proceed  the same way with your brush until you reach the nape.

3. Repeat steps one and two on the opposite side for a thicker fauxhawk.

4. Tilt head forward and mist hair with Bb Spray de Mode Flexible Hairspray. Wait a minute, then scrunch and piece hair out.

Oprah | Your Gray Hair Game Plan


Q: I’ve just started seeing grays but done’t want to begin coloring my hair yet. How can I make salt-and-pepper work?

A: This look is best on brown or black hair, says Jet Rhys, a celebrity colorist and salon co-owner. That’s because it all comes down to the contrast of dark and light.
So brunettes, when your grays first start sprouting, they’re rarely evenly dispersed throughout your hair; you may sendup with a few streaks here and there. To get a more even look, consider a temporary color-depositing spray, compact, or mousse. “It won’t completely cover the grays but it will camouflage them, which makes pithiness less visible” says Gaby Miley, a salon owner and global artist at Redken 5th Avenue NYC. “And keep your overall look youthful and current with a. Stylist cut,” says Rhys. Try a layered collarbone-length chop, and smooth your hair by blowing it out with a round brush or defining your waves or curls with a curling iron. If your grays are coming in coarse and sticking up straight along your hairline apply a cream or softening balm to those areas and blow dry with a boar-bristle brush.

Q: What can be done to keep grays away between dye jobs?

A: Maddeningly, grays can start showing as soon as a couple weeks after coloring! If you (or your colorist) are already using permanent dye, you have a few options. The highlights/lowlight tricks mentioned earlier will help extend your color. If you dye at home, try a root touch-up kit between color sessions. Or mix up the formula you normally use and apply it to your roots only. Here’s the technique Rhys suggests: Divide your hair into four sections by parting it down the center from forehead to nape and then again from ear to ear. Starting with one of the back quadrants, take horizontal sections of hair and paint the color on only the new growth from the nape to the crown. Repeat with the other back section. Now move to the top of your head. Starting from just above the ear, take horizontal sections and paint color on your roots until you reach your center part. Repeat on your other side. Then cover the top of the bottle with plastic wrap, put the lid on it, and store it in your bathroom vanity until you need it again, Rhys advises. If you have a special event coming up and no time to DIY, ask your salon whether it offers express color: “Just the part, the crown and around the face,” she says. “It’s usually half the price or less.” Otherwise, try a temporary fix. Tinted powders with hair-binding technology (meaning they stick to your strands) tend to work better than pencils and mascara-wand-like products, which can have less staying power. Unlike the touch-up kits mentioned above, these powders last only until you wash them out. One we like: Bumble and Bumble Hair Powder in Blondish and Brownish.

My brows are becoming gray, too. What can I do?

This is one case where you don’t want to match your brows to your hair–you’ll look too washed-out. Instead, keep them your normal color, says colorist Jet Rhys. Ask for an in-salon tint, or try makeup (a very temporary fix): Brush on a tinted brow mousse or tinted gel with a spoolie (like a mascara wand). One to two shades brighter than your haircolor is most flattering.

Q: I have silvery hair that’s started looking dingy. How can I bring it back to life?

A: You may lead a happily dye-free existence, but your gray strands still require maintenance. “Gray hair can take on a yellow tinge,” says Rhys. One fix is metallic blue color-depositing shampoo, as opposed to traditional blue- or purple-tinted shampoos. “Shimmery blue undertones get rid of yellow brassiness, leaving hair brighter,” says Rhys. The result is more silver than gray. Use it once or twice a week instead of your regular formula. Coarser, drier hair may also appear frizzier and less light reflective, so maximizing shine is key. Do ti with a structured haircut in a classic shape like a pixie, a bob, or a lob. Apply a high-shine serum or balm to damp hair before styling. If you have wavy or curly hair, use the diffuser attachment as you blow dry. For straight strands, use the nozzle. Both help direct the airflow so your strands’ cuticle layer stays smooth, which creates a shinier effect. Then use a boar-bristle brush while drying hair. Now, go gray your way!



THE PRO: Jet Rhys
Owner, Jet Rhys Salon, Solana Beach, CA

HAIR TYPE: Color-treated and finely textured but thick in density

MY REGIMEN: I worship Bumble and bumble! I shampoo and condition with their Bb Quenching line three times a week. Then, I spray Bb Prep Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil on damp hair and swipe a nickel-size amount of Repair Blow Dry through to the ends. For the last step, I blow-dry 75% and use a round brush to create my finished style.

JET’S BEST BLOW-OUT TIP: For great volume, pretend you’re creating a Mohawk down the top center of your head. Here are my steps:
1. Blow-dry the center for your shape.
2. Take a 1-inch section at the hairline on the right side and wrap it around your brush vertically to create root lift.
3. Proceed the sam way with your brush until you reach the nape.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 on the opposite side.
5. Finally, tilt head forward and mist with Bb Spray De Mode Flexible Hairspray. Wait a minute, then scrunch and shake hair out.

Short Hair Style Guide | Uncover Your Best Layers


Add swing, style and movement without losing major length with these 20+ innovative styles, from our friends at Jean Claude Biguine salons.

“When layers are cut correctly, they give your style more movement and versatility. Done poorly they can make your hair look wispy, thin or even like you have two separate haircuts.” – Jet Rhys, Celeb Stylist



“Choppy layers work great on fine hair in need of a boost or thick hair that could use some control,” says Rhys, owner of her namesake salon in Solana Beach, CA. “Sections are cut to boost fullness and can also add asymmetry and create allover texture and definition.”

Lots of side volume and jet black locks (a nod to the goth trend, alive again) are oh-so edgy.

This cut is tailor-made for girls with naturally wavy hair. Simply wash, scrunch and go!

Opt for asymmetry with layers that are longer on one side. In back, short vertical layers increase interest.

Give shoulder-length locks a shaggy vibe by pairing a full crown with pieced-out ends.

Best for thick hair with a hint of wave, this snip features stacked layers in back, tapered ends and curtain bangs.

“Round brushes are best for styling layers. They encourage movement and swing and add extra volume.” – Jet Rhys

Chin-length layers frame the face, and angled ends form a playful flip.


“If you want lots of detail in your style, choose textured layers, which are achieved with a point-cutting technique,” says Rhys. “Cutting hair with the scissors positioned vertically, very light snips give locks a softer edge, which deeper ‘point cuts’ can add a heavier feeling throughout the hair.”

An elfin crop shows off pointy sideburns and choppy bangs that put the face into full focus.

Platinum blonde layers are infused with volume and texture for a modern Marilyn Monroe vibe.

This short bowl-inspired cut has pointy, temple-hugging sides and is snipped over the ears, leading to a v-shaped nape.

Go big or go home by having your thick hair cut into allover textured layers.

For a polished feel, try a pixie with long, peek-a-boo bangs, tapered sides and volume through the crown.

Asymmetry fringe not only accentuates the eyes but it also adds softness, which can help you look younger.

Here, straight, fine hair is razor-tapered all around, with light interior layers creating a bold bowl shape. Blow hair out to play up the cut’s linear lines and sharp edges.

Add interest to a thick, layered bob with a mix of honey and golden blonde highlights set against dark roots.

“Point cutting sone of my favorite layering techniques because it’s so versatile. It can add either light or heavy texture to the ends, depending on a client’s hair type.” – Jet Rhys


“This cutting technique can be achieved with scissors or a razor, and it has a visible blunt edge,” says Rhys. “Ask your stylist for a layered cut with a heavy outline shape. If you desire a clean, polished look, this one’s for you.”

Rock bold bangs and natural wave with heavy layers, then style hair with help from the fingers and a curl enhancer.

Perfect for smooth strands, you can wear hair slick and tucked back or go loose with extra volume.


“Adding long layers to your hair promotes texture, volume and shape,” says Rhys. “These layers are perfect for fine hair as they create the illusion of thickness. Here, scissoring starts at the mouth area and progresses to the chin for width.”

Balayage highlights will play up your cut when done by a color pro.


“Internal layers create a soft line, making the overall style appear carefree,” says Rhys. “This fairly new technique gives hair a shattered line. Best done with scissors that slice through the ends, internal layers add movement and an extra dimension of texture for instant sass.”

Soft, face-framing layers on straight, user-dark hair are so sophisticated.

Be a bombshell in wavy, tousled layers that feature blonde-on-brown tones.

A pretty, feminine short ‘do features point-cutting and long bangs, a nod to the androgynous styles that are tearing up the runways.

Soft, easy waves are the name of the game here. Diffuse hair dry to enhance its bend.

Hair Preview | Hair Mixology



Is your hair fine and flat? Thick and unruly? Prone to frizz? Maybe you’ve had a hard time getting your mane to behave in the past, but the turmoil tops here! Iv’e tailor-picked products to help you get the look you want. Simply find your hair type under each category and apply the recipe, using my step-by-step styling instructions to get the finish you crave:

YOU WANT TO: Pump up the volume by adding “calories” to your hair.

1. Shampoo and condition every other day.
2. Add a quarter-size dollop of volumizing mousse to roots of damp hair.
3. Blow-dry hair by lifting it up and away from the scalp to create volume.
4. Use a medium-size round brush to smooth out the ends.
5. When hair is completely dry, lift it and mist the roots with a volumizing spray to add separation and texture.

YOU WANT TO: Incorporate swing and movement in to strands that would otherwise lay flat.

1. Shampoo and condition every two days.
2. Pour a dime-size dollop of blow-dry creme onto hands and distribute the product into damp hair, working it evenly from the mid-shaft all the way to the ends.
3. Blow-dry hair thoroughly with a round brush.
4. For the perfect finish, mist a light, touchable hair spray all over to achieve a soft hold.

YOU WANT TO: Keep ends from looking dry by boosting shine.

1. Shampoo and condition every three days
2. On damp hair, apply a quarter-size amount of hair treatment oil; start on the ends and work your way up. Be sure to avoid the roots and scalp area or hair might look greasy.
3. Blow-dry hair, then follow up with a few spritzes of shine-enhancing spray for added brilliance.

YOU WANT TO: Prevent your strands from falling flat on top by encouraging more fullness.

1. Shampoo and condition daily.
2. Add hair-thickening spray to the root area.
3. Spritz a generous amount of surf spray from mid-strand to ends.
4. Add a nickel-size amount of conditioning hair styling cream to soften and define your waves.

YOU WANT TO: Keep hair from looking straight in some areas and wavy in others by creating a seamless s-type wave.

1. Shampoo and condition daily.
2. Prep hair with a thermal protectant spray.
3. Blow-dry, then mist the finished look with a medium-hold hairspray to add body without weighing hair down.

YOU WANT TO: Use the right products to calm your locks into a looser wave pattern.

1. Shampoo and condition every other day.
2. Combine a teaspoon-size dollop of frizz-tamer and a tablespoon-size amount of styling foam in your palms and apply throughout hair.
3. Take 2-inch sections and twist them as you blow-dry.

PRO TIP: This texture type can lose its bounce and swing if it’s not layered properly all over the head.

YOU WANT TO: Give texture a boost so it appears fuller.

1. Shampoo and condition daily.
2. Mist a volumizing spray at the roots.
3. Add a quarter-size dollop of volumizing foam to tips of hair.
4. As you blow-dry, lift the root area gently with fingers to add volume and hold, then scrunch ends with a diffuser until hair is 75-percent dry.

YOU WANT TO: Diminish frizz on the hair’s outermost layer.

1. Shampoo and condition every other day.
2. Prep hair with a thermal protectant spray.
3. Apply a moisturizing gel from roots to tips and comb evenly throughout.
4. Blow-dry, scrunching hair with your fingers.

PRO TIP: If you totally air-dry curly hair, it will be less likely to frizz

YOU WANT TO: Keep ends from looking dry by upping the shine.

1. Shampoo and condition every other day.
2. Combine a generous amount of defining gel and 4 to 5 drops of frizz tamer in the palm of your hand, rub hands together and apply throughout hair.
3. Let hair dry by itself to keep frizz and flyaways at bay.

PRO TIP: Use a conditioning mask once a week to hydrate thick locks.

Jet Rhys teaches cut, color and styling techniques on international stages and styles A-list celebrities for Hollywood events.

Haircut Ideas For Curly Girls That Are On-Trend For Summer 2017

We’ve all heard the saying “blondes have more fun,” but we’re here to argue that it’s the curly-haired girls who actually have the best time. Sure, the frizz factor may make you want to scream in the middle of July, but there are tons of products to nip that humidity issue in the bud. We say, embrace your curls! In addition to these 10 hot Summer haircut trends, we’re offering eight different curly style options to inspire you. From the “newfro” to a curly midi to Rapunzel-status waves, here are the new styles that three hairstyling pros are psyched about this Summer.

by Wendy Gould

The “Newfro”
The Cut: “Newfro”
Celebrity Inspiration: Lupita Nyong’o

Description: “Lupita owns this non-afro that I’m calling the newfro,” says Jet of Jet Rhys Salon in Solana Beach, CA. “To get this look, ask for an updated version of the classic afro. What makes the newfro different is that the layers are left a little longer on the inside of the cut. The bottom outline edge is cut a little blunt and short, but the layers are longer on the inside, giving bouncy coils. Also, unlike the traditional afro that is picked out and often made frizzy, the newfro is all about springy curls with sass.” Jet says this style is suitable for all face shapes but noted that it can make a round face look rounder.

Style It: Less is more when it comes to shampooing this ‘do. Jet recommends “to only shampoo twice a week, because the hair needs the natural oil for it to embrace the curl. On freshly cleansed or wet hair, apply a gel that helps keep the structure to the curl.” Jet suggests Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel ($26) and says to wrap a two-inch section of gelled hair around a #2 pencil. Pull the pencil out and move on to the next piece of hair, repeating until you’re finished. Massage the roots once hair is completely dry to get a little extra volume, and you’re ready to go.


Face-Framing Fringe and Layers
The Cut: Face-Framing Fringe and Layers
Celebrity Inspiration: DeWanda Wise

Description: “DeWanda looks amazing — this look is perfect for Summer,” says Jet. “To get this cut, ask to keep layers long so naturally tighter curls won’t shrink up. For the bangs, stylists should use the point-cutting technique to create a wispy softness rather than blunt edges.”

Style It: “Apply a thickening lotion mixed with shine drops — like Ouidad’s Mongongo Oil ($38) — to help smooth out the bangs and root area,” explains Jet. “Then apply a mousse or gel — like MOP’s Lemongrass Volume Whip ($22) — to the midsections of the hair. Next, take three-inch sections of hair and loosely braid from the middle of the strands to the tips and allow them to air dry.” Once they’re completely dry, remove the braids and gently shake hair out with your fingers. “This look looks best on sweetheart-shape faces,” Jet adds.


Curly Midi
The Cut: Curly Midi
Celebrity Inspiration: Jenny Slate

Description: “This midi-haircut has virtually no layering. The only layering is kept on the very outside edges of the haircut, which gives it the straighter appearance and makes it superversatile,” says Jet. “What really defines this style is the sleekness at the root area, and the added pins at the face make the look fun and cute.” Also, this haircut is suitable for all face shapes.

Style It: “On damp hair, apply a curl-activating cream and rake with your fingers from the root area to the tips of hair,” explains Jet. “Part the hair down the center and fasten with a bobby pin on either side. Using a diffuser, blow-dry lightly while scrunching up the ends of the hair.” Jet says that the key to re-creating Slate’s style is to leave some dampness in the hair, which helps keeps the ends from frizzing. “Once dry, flip your head over and massage at the roots, and scrunch up the ends to release some bounce in the curl.”


Hair Show | My Desert Island Beauty Product

Three top stylists share their beauty truths (and other obsessions.) Get the lowdown on the best products and the hottest styles, plus what to avoid if you want great hair.

Jet Rhys, Co-Owner, Jet Rhys Salon, Solana Beach, CA

My 5-minute hair fix:

The scrunch-and-go! I spritz day-old hair with hairspray, then use my blow-dryer and fingers to scrunch it.

My desert island beauty product:

Hair powder. It extends time between shampoos, blends grays and pumps up volume.

The hottest style coming up fast:

Long, windswept bangs, and top layers with shorter sides and nape.

Two trends that should go away:

Balayage and ombré

Best hairstyle hack:

To make a fake bob in under a minute, grab hair into a pony and roll it under the nape, then pin it.

Fave hot tool:

Curling wand

I would never DIY:

My color!

Best way to avoid split ends:

A baby trim every five to six weeks.

Bad hair habit I’d like to see everyone kick:

Ripping a comb or brush through wet hair.

Celeb with the best hair:

Jennifer Lawrence

pg 22-23

Short Hair Style Guide | Festival Flair


Coachella inspired styles set the scene for your alfresco music season. Get ready to go boho!

Cali-based Coachella may be the most well-known music festival to date (who can resist celebrating amazing music alongside celebs like Kylie and Kendall Jenner, Leonardo DiCaprio and Lea Michelle?). But if you can’t make it to the show, no worries–festivals are scheduled country-wide into the early fall!

Whether you’re planning to attend a one-week or a three-day soirée, being prepared is key. It’s time to have fun and look cute doing it! Jet Rhys of Jet Rhys salon in Solana Beach, CA, gives us the lowdown on her fave festival hair looks just for you….


1. Style short, straight or wavy hair with product suing your hands and avoiding a brush and dryer, which will make your style look pouffy.
2. Hair accessories are a must. Clip a flower or fun gemstone hairpins above your ears, or place a floral headband atop your crown.


1. Apply gel on damp hair and comb it through.
2. Take glitter from an art store and sprinkle it on roots.
3. Apply hairspray and let dry.
4. Just remember to keep your hands away from your hair to maintain your sparkle!


1. Carve out two semicircular sections of hair: one at the nape and one above that.
2. Mist both sections lightly with water (damp hair works best for control).
3. Start with the nape area. At the hairline, take three small sections and begin to braid, tucking each piece under the center strand.
4. Next, pick up small strands to add to the outside pieces as you go; fasten hair off at the nape.
5. Repeat the same for the other section.
6. Once both braids are completed at the nape, combine the two and continue with a regular (underhand) braid through the tips.


1. Add volumizer, and then blow-dry with a round brush.
2. Bring hair to the crown and twist the length, starting at the base until it forms a bun. Fasten with bobby pins, leaving some pieces free.


1. Style hair and lightly tease it all the way through the top.
2. Loosely gather hair in the back and work it into a bun, fastening with an elastic. Allow a few strands to go free on both sides.
3. Take a cute tribal scarf and fold it lengthwise. Position it over the forehead and tie it beneath the loose bun.

11 Products Beauty Pros Really Want You To Stop Using

By Krista Bennett Demaio

Not all beauty products are created equal, or let’s be real, even remotely equal. Some face washes leave your skin positively dewy, while others leave it feeling more like old sandpaper. One shampoo may make your hair look lush and shiny—another, well, you get the picture. And most of time, you only discover which ones are subpar after buying them. So annoying. And expensive. That’s why we talked to dermatologists, hair stylists, makeup artists, and nail experts to find out which products aren’t doing you any favors—or worse—and what to start using to instead. (Looking for even more ways to look and feel your best? Then don’t miss Prevention’s new Younger In 8 Weeks plan. You could lose up to 25 pounds in 2 months!)

Discount hair products

We’ve all seen those high-end hair products lining the shelves at discount department stores like Nordstrom Rack and T.J. Maxx. But Jet Rhys, a salon owner in San Diego, says you shouldn’t even think about buying them. “Often, those products have been sitting in warehouses for years, and they are watered down and expired,” she explains.

Switch to: Salon-brand products from authorized retailers
If you’re devoted to a particular brand, you can only be sure that you’re getting the real deal—and something not past its expiration date—when you buy from a professional salon or authorized retailer. Check your favorite brands’ websites for a list of sites and stores that carry your go-to products. (Check out these 15 hair products stylists swear by.)

Full-coverage foundation

While foundation isn’t necessarily bad for your skin, it can look heavy (and even accentuate wrinkles) and usually isn’t even necessary. (Here are 9 beauty rules to follow for women over 40.)

Switch to: Sheer foundation with spot concealer
“I prefer the look of a sheer foundation paired with a creamy concealer to add the coverage where you need it,” says makeup artist Ashleigh Ciucci. “Using these products gives the skin a fresher and more modern look.” If you are looking for some hefty coverage to conceal frustrating issues like rosacea or vitiligo, then full-coverage foundation could be a good option.

Cleansers with sodium lauryl sulfate

Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) is a detergent-like ingredient that gives cleansers their lather. Yes, it removes dirt, oil, and makeup pretty well, but there’s a big downside: “It can irritate your skin and dry it out,” warns Debra Jaliman, MD, a dermatologist in New York City and author of Skin Rules: Trade Secrets From a Top New York Dermatologist. The strong cleansing agent can strip skin of its natural oils, leaving it tight, dry, and inflamed.

Switch to: A mild cleanser
Jaliman suggests face washes made with the ingredient decyl polyglucoside. “It’s a natural and mild surfactant that cleans the skin, yet maintains balance without causing dryness,” she says. The ingredient is found in Acure Facial Cleansing Gel ($8,

Cuticle cutters

Visible cuticles can cramp your mani style, but they serve an important role. “The cuticle is the nail’s protective seal and key to overall nail health,” says Dana Stern, MD, a dermatologist in New York City who specializes in nail health. Cutting or aggressively pushing back your cuticles leaves nails vulnerable to infection. (If you’re a nail biter, here are 7 reasons to stop immediately.)

Switch to: A washcloth or a cuticle pusher
It’s okay to clip any hanging, ragged cuticles with a pair of clean cuticle trimmers, but don’t snip the rest of your cuticle. When you get out of the shower, use a washcloth or a cuticle pusher to gently push back the skin. Your skin will be super soft from the steam, so this should be a quick and easy task.

Alcohol-based toners to treat acne

Traditional, alcohol-based toners will only dry out your skin, cautions Joshua Zeichner, MD, a dermatologist in New York City. “Oftentimes, adult women with acne actually have dry skin, despite their oil and breakouts,” he says. Like SLS, alcohol strips skin of its essential moisture, exacerbating dry skin.

Switch to: Oil-free moisturizers
They provide the hydration you need without the pore-clogging oil. “I find that oil-free moisturizers, alongside acne medications, get better results than the drying effects and barrier disruption associated with harsh toners,” says Zeichner. Try Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture with Broad Spectrum SPF 15 Sunscreen ($9, If you like the idea of using a toner after cleansing, consider alcohol-free versions that add lightweight hydration, such as Fresh Floral Rose Toner ($40,

Bargain blow dryer

It gets the job done, so what’s the big deal if it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles? Here’s the issue: “Basic run-of-the-mill blow dryers take extra time drying your hair and therefore damage it more,” explains Devin Toth, a stylist at Salon SCK in New York City. (Make sure your morning blow dry doesn’t include these mistakes.)

Switch to: A tourmaline-infused dryer
Tourmaline emits negative ions that break down water molecules more quickly and efficiently than dryers made without it. That means your hair dries faster and is exposed to less damaging heat in the long run. Try Hot Tools Tourmaline Tools 2000 Turbo Ionic Dryer ($49,

Facial scrubs containing walnut shells

Gritty scrubs made with pulverized walnut shells can be really abrasive, causing microscopic tears that leave skin vulnerable to infection and inflammation, says makeup artist Sophia Porter.

Switch to: A glycolic acid exfoliant
The acid gently and safely dissolves away the glue-like substance that holds dead skin cells on your skin, allowing them to be easily sloughed off. No scrubbing, or rough particles required. We like Aveeno Positively Radiant 60 Second In-Shower Facial ($7,

Waxy root sprays

Temporary root cover-up products made with waxes are a colorist’s pet peeve. “They’re hard to remove from the hair and block dye from penetrating,” explains Doug Macintosh, senior colorist at Louise O’Connor Salon in New York City.

Switch to: Root-covering powders
No need to walk around with visible roots; just switch to wax-free products that won’t impede dye molecules from getting into the hair shaft. Macintosh likes tinted powders such as Color Wow Root Cover Up ($34.50,

Long-lasting lipsticks

Matte, long-wearing lip formulas tend to be overly drying on lips, leaving them looking and feeling rough—not exactly a look you’d want.

Switch to: Gloss
Lips with a glossy or frosty texture look more kissable and touchable, says Ciucci. (You can make your own lip balm with this easy recipe from Prevention Premium.) Look for a product that also adds hydration, such as It Cosmetics Vitality Lip Blush Hydrating Lipstain ($24,

Anti-frizz serums that contain silicone

Silicone hair products make hair appear smooth and shiny—at first. But they leave behind a coating that can, over time, dull hair and block nutrients from getting into the hair shaft, says celebrity hairstylist Juan Carlos Maciques. Not sure if your go-to products contain the chemical? Check the ingredient panel and look for words that end in ‘cone:’ Cyclomethicone, dimethicone, and methicone, for example, are all types of silicone, and there are countless others.

Switch to: Lightweight hair oil
A little oil adds sheen, control, and hydration to hair without the buildup. Try L’Oréal Professional Mythic Oil ($28,

Nail polishes containing formaldehyde

This noxious chemical alters the structure of the nail plate, making it harder. It also reduces nail flexibility and increases brittleness—a recipe for broken nails—and can cause irritation and separation of the nail plate and the bed (ouch). But a bigger issue? The Department of Health and Human Services named formaldehyde a known human carcinogen in 2011. “It’s remarkable that there are still many nail products, especially those touted as ‘nail treatments,’ that contain formaldehyde,” says Stern.

Switch to: Three-, five-, or nine-free nail products
With these formulas, you can rest easy that there is no formaldehyde lurking in the bottle. These products are also free of other potentially harmful ingredients such as toluene and dibutyl phthalate. Try 9-free Londontown Lakur ($16,