The best way to find a hairdresser is to ask someone with hair that you like: Who does your hair?
So we asked men and women we spotted on the street, in the Metro, at parties, in malls. We asked fashionable Washingtonians we know to tell us about their stylists. In all, we heard from several hundred men and women.
What follows is not a list of the area’s best salons—there are many more good stylists about town—but the names we heard repeatedly from happy clients with nice hair. We also looked at the portfolios of many area stylists, to see their other work.
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Salon for Blondes
Hair Lounge, 2201 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-337-0951; hairloungesalon.com. Owners Daniel Levy and Serkan Sut—Levy used to work at Okyo; Sut counts Larry King as a client—run a salon specializing in color. From highlights to color correction, Levy says they can give a woman the same color as “when she was a little girl”—as in blond. Also recommended for updos and “event hair.” There’s even a frequent-client program: Spend more than $500 and get 10 percent off products and services; spend $1,500 and it’s 15 percent. Cut: $40 and up for men, $60 and up for women. Color: $70 and up. Highlights: $110 and up.
Right for Redheads
One80 Salon, 1275 K St., NW, Suite 101; 202-842-9113; one80salon.com. Heather Finkel, a redhead herself, is the person to see for reddish hues, while blondes and others swear by owner/colorist Jeremy Buchanan. Need a cut? Owner Rémi Metsu is a whiz with scissors. Cyrille Turpin is best for blowouts and updos. Cut: $50 and up for men, $80 and up for women. Color: $75 and up. Highlights: $120 and up.
Another Great Choice for Color
Urban Style Lab, 1341 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-223-2066; lab-dc.com. As the name implies, this is not the place for stiff helmet hair. The colorists all earn raves—especially Claudia Torrico, for natural-looking blond highlights, and Sertac Ozturk. Cut: $45 and up for men, $75 and up for women. Color: $65 and up. Highlights: $110 and up.
Bill Lawrence Salon, 2120 18th St., NW; 202-387-8310. Located in Adams Morgan, this is the go-to salon for African-Americans in Washington. Bill Lawrence and Samantha Banks are the stylists most recommended. Cut: $65 and up. Color: $65 and up. Highlights: $150 and up.
George Salon at the Four Seasons, 2828 Pennsylvania Ave., NW; 202-342-1942. Many well-known heads swear by this beauty mainstay in Georgetown. Timo Nguyen and Ismail Tekin are talented with scissors. A great place for blowouts, too. Cut: $45 and up for men, $110 and up for women. Color: $100 and up. Highlights: $150 and up.
Ilo Salon & Day Spa, 1637 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-342-0350; ilosalonspa.com. This Georgetown salon continues to turn out high-quality, consistent work. Jack Howard is a top choice for color and highlights; Gary Walker is popular for cuts; Claire Burnham is recommended for curly hair. Cut: $60 and up for men, $90 and up women. Color: $120 and up. Highlights: $111 and up.
Okyo Salon, 2903 M St., NW; 202-342-2675; okyosalon.com. Over its 23 years, this Georgetown salon has styled such celebrities as Eva Longoria Parker and Sandra Bullock and won praise in Elle and Vogue. Owner Bernard Portelli (he takes new clients by referral only) is such an institution that his stylists have gone on to start other good salons, including Hair Lounge. A good stylist to see here: Nadine Amiri. Cuts: $50 for men, $80 for women. Color: $95 and up. Highlights: $130 and up.
Salon Jean-Paul, 4820 Yuma St., NW; 202-966-4600. Jean-Paul Amsellem was Jackie Kennedy’s hairdresser in the 1960s, and the salon he started 35 years ago—although he’s now retired—is still going strong. The decor and some of the older clientele give it an old-fashioned, beauty-parlor feel. Don’t be surprised to see well-coiffed celebrities such as NBC’s Andrea Mitchell. Mustafa Corumlu is often recommended—he gives WAMU personality Diane Rehm her distinctive ’do. Jean-Paul’s nephew, William Robert, is a stylist and the new co-owner there, carrying on the family tradition. Cut: $45 and up for men, $75 and up for women. Color: $70 and up. Highlights: $155 and up.
On the Cutting Edge
Easel Hair Studio, 1616 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-342-3999; easelhair.com. A modern space set in a brick townhouse, this Georgetown salon features easel-shaped haircutting stations and local art on the walls. The styles, especially by owner Shawn Leonard, can be artistic, too. Cuts: $35 for men, $65 for women. Color: $50 and up. Highlights: $100 and up.
Trim, A Salon, 2700 Ontario Rd., NW; 202-462-6080. A small, edgy salon where the music is as loud as the green, orange, and silver walls. The salon can get packed with a young clientele—could it be the free beer? Claibourne Reppert and Heather Hogan are especially popular. Women’s cuts are $70, men’s $38. Color: $85 and up. Highlights: $110 and up.
New and Noteworthy
Parlour, 1522 U St., NW; 202-986-0080; parlourdc.com. Rebecca Haehnle and Chris Keller, who previously worked at Axis, opened this pretty and unpretentious salon in May. Cut: $40 and up for men, $65 and up for women. Color: $65 and up. Highlights: $65 and up.
Bogart, 1063 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-333-6550; bogartsalon.com. This Georgetown salon, more than 30 years old, continues to turn out good work on everyone from adults to kids to brides to prom-going teens. All the stylists—who rarely leave—have devoted fans, especially Dragan Jakovljev and co-owner Fernando Ferre. Cut: $35 and up for men, $55 and up for women. Color: $60 and up. Highlights: $90 and up.
Paul Bosserman, 3214 N St., NW; 202-337-0020. This unassuming four-chair Georgetown salon isn’t easy to find. But many who do—especially women in their forties and fifties—come back. Cuts: $65 and up for men, $85 and up for women. Color: $85 and up. Highlights: $125 and up.