Hair salon secrets to save you big money


How much do you pay for hair services and coloring?

"I walk out of there for about $500 with a cut and a color," says Vicki Shaffer about an average trip to the hair salon.

You may not spend quite as much, but what would you say to professional hair color for $49 or highlights for $65? Welcome to Tint Hair Color Studio in Santa Monica. It's a color only salon that may be the first of its kind in the country.

"What we try to do is, we try to eliminate the very complicated things we do at our other salon and keep the menu simple, quick and easy," said Frank Dino, the studio's co-owner

Tint's motto? We dye, you dry.

Dino and the other co-owner, Dana Clark, say clients get an expert color consultation first, then get assigned to a chair for service. They keep costs down by having clients blow dry their own hair. There's no appointment necessary. Most customers are in and out in little more than an hour.

If you want that just-left-the-salon look, you could go to one of the popular blow dry bars and spend $35 or more - or you could pocket that cash and sign up for Blow Dry Boot Camp. Doing it yourself can save you lots of money.

At the Bellezza Salon in the Beverly Hilton Hotel, the Blow Dry Boot Camp drill sergeant - so to speak - is celebrity hair stylist Kelley Krueger.

"Long hair, short hair, everyone's different," Krueger said, "so my main concern is just to get that full, blown out effect when they're done."

Krueger passes on some stylist insider secrets to help limit damage to hair. Some of her tips include using a hair dryer with multiple heat settings and don't keep it on the hottest setting the whole time. Also, using the right brush can make all the difference.

"The metal brushes tend to burn hair a little bit more, that's why I like the boar bristles that condition the hair and leave it silky smooth," Krueger said.

The cost to learn Krueger's professional techniques is free if you're a client of the salon, or if you're not, you can pay a one-time fee of $75.

My next stop can save you real money on a variety of beauty treatments. It's a beauty school called the Academy for Salon Professionals. This one is in Canoga Park.

If you haven't been to a beauty school before or for awhile, know that they have become more and more upscale. You get state of the art equipment and professional products without the high prices. They offer all types of hair services, facials, waxing, microdermabrasion, glycolic peels and more.

Typically a haircut at the academy starts at $10 and full color at just $45.

"I love it here," said customer Rusti Gold. "It's very accommodating, the girls are great. I haven't had a mistake yet. It's fun."

We want to hear from you, too! What tips do you have to save real money? Post them on Ric Romero's Facebook page at

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