Mane Addicts Awards 2018–See Our List of the Top Hairstylists, Brands and Products of the Year!
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We’re about to close our 2018 chapter, but we couldn’t finish out the year without celebrating the best and brightest of all things hair. We spend our days sleuthing out cool new brands, cutting edge hair trends, and up-and-coming hairdressers that you need to know. As editors, we are constantly trying out new products and innovative hairstyles, staying on the pulse of all things hair, all the time. Which is why we channel our favorites into our second annual Mane Addicts Awards! Our team of trusted experts, editors, influencers and hairdressers weighed in and the competition was fierce… but, the results are in.
From the most influential stylist of the year, to our cult-favorite hair mask and fave drugstore find–click through to see who snagged a spot in the 2018 Mane Addicts Awards!
Mane Addicts 2018 Awards
Our guide to the best and brightest stars of 2018. Scroll through to see our cult-worthy standouts.
Best Stylist-Owned Haircare Brand: Kristin Ess
If there’s one brand that really stood out this year, it was Kristin Ess’s affordable Target-exclusive line of hair products and recently launched styling tools that tops the list. The celebrity hairstylist, who counts Lauren Conrad and Lucy Hale as VIP clients, has had more than two decades of experience in the industry which she parlayed into her wildly succesful namesake line that has blown past their goal of $10 million in sales. We can’t wait to see what this line drums up next!
Most Influential Hairstylist of 2018: Jennifer Yepez
It’s been quite the year for Jennifer Yepez! From Cabo to Paris to Dubai, this jetsetting stylist is known for trotting the globe tending to the tresses of her A-list ladies like Emily Ratakjowski, Gigi Hadid and Salma Hayek. But what really set her career into overdrive? Being tapped as the celebrity hairstylist ambassador for industry favorite Kerastasé.
Most Influential Colorist of 2018: Cassondra Kaeding
If you’ve ever drooled over Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Olivia Munn, Cassie or Rooney Mara’s hair color, you’re admiring the work of celebrity hair colorist Cassondra Kaeding, who hails from Mare Salon in West Hollywood and also has clients in NYC and Dubai. A newly minted Redken Brand Ambassador this year, Cassondra boasts a hefty client roster and a deep knowledge of hair color techniques. Coupled with her cool girl clientele and veteran color experience, Cassondra was the obvious choice for best colorist this year.
Best Emerging Hairstylist: Ruslan Nureev
A newly minted Mane Addicts stylist with a growing roster of young Hollywood stars like Romee Strijd and Hailee Steinfeld–Ruslan Nureev was an easy choice for our Best Emerging Hairstylist of 2018! Assisting for two of the greats–Chris Appleton and Harry Josh–Ruslan has paid his dues and honed his skills as an exceptional stylist who turns out creative, trend-making looks that we’re constantly saving in our feeds.
Best Emerging Hair Colorist: Tauni Dawson
It’s hard to take one scroll through Instagram without stumbling across @Tauni901’s work. The Senior Stylist at 901 Salon as a booming roster of starlets like Kourtney Kardashian, Becca Tilley and Desi Perkins and turns out sun-kissed looks perfectly documented on those well lit gray walls. With almost 100k followers on her own, Tauni is definitely one to keep your eye on in 2019.
Best Extensionist: Priscilla Valles
Let’s be frank–most of the most sought after manes aren’t entirely real. Chances are, they’ve tapped the industry’s most trusted extenionist, Priscilla Valles, for a little extra pep in their step… or should we say mane. Britney Spears, Kylie Jenner and X-tina all have her on speed dial–she’s the master for fuller, healthier-looking hair!
Best BFF Hair and Makeup Duo: Justine Marjan and Ash Holm
Nothing makes a workday go by faster than when you have your BFF with you! We love keeping up with all of the A-list glam squads traveling from coast-to-coast together, but our fave duo to follow this year goes to Mane Addicts alum and celebrity hairstylist Justine Marjan and celebrity makeup artist Ash Holm. Not only do the two work on Kim Kardashian, Kourtney Kardashian and Dorit Kemsley together–they also team up to create makeup and hair tutorials and are always showing support for each other’s collabs.
Best Texturizing Spray: Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray
Not a day goes by that we don’t hear someone raving about Oribe’s Dry Texturizing Spray. While this cult-favorite is nothing new; it did celebrate it’s 10th anniversary this year with a gorgeous, limited-edition, sequin-wrapped bottle that’s worthy of a lifetime spot on your vanity. It’s not often that a product reigns supreme for 10 years and counting–so congrats are definitely in order!
Best Natural Texture Hair Brand: Marc Anthony True Professional
If there’s one brand that’s truly dominating the natural hair texture space with innovative formulas at an affordable price, it’s Marc Anthony. His game-changing Strictly Curls is a Mane Addicts Editor fave.
Best Clean Beauty Brand: Captain Blankenship
Two words dominated 2018–clean beauty. With brands like Sephora dedicating more shelf space and clean beauty stores like Credo Beauty popping up nationwide, the trend towards shopping clean is most definitely on the rise. Captain Blankenship was a rather early pioneer in the clean hair space and has several huge product hits like Mermaid Salt Spray, Mermaid Dry Shampoo and Golden Waves.
Best Hairspray: Tigi Bedhead Superstar Queen For a Day
Hairsprays tend to get a bad rep with consumers, who tend to opt for texturizing sprays over good ‘ol hairspray. But when it comes to hairstylists, hairsprays are a daily go-to and a kit favorite this year is Tigi Bedhead Superstar Queen For a Day hairspray.
Best Hair Mask: Ouai Treatment Mask
If you’re hair super thirsty and in need of a moisture pick-me-up, look no further than Ouai’s treatment mask! Our editors’ swear by this–which comes in travel-friendly, single use packets–and the brand is set to launch a larger at-home size in a tube early next year.
Best Drugstore Dry Shampoo: Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Dry Shampoo
Here at Mane Addicts, we have a penchant for dry shampoos. How else are we supposed to get our blowouts to survive for the full work week? Our tried-and-true drugstore dry shampoo find goes to Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak which works wonders and can be picked up at your local convenience store no matter what city you’re in or ordered on Amazon prime.
Best Drugstore Brand: TRESemme
It feels like no matter what major event you’re at, be it New York Fashion Week or Coachella, the TRESémme team is there in full force! With legend Odile Gilbert leading shows at fashion week and Justine Marjan showing off her styling skills on E! News and beyond–TRESémme is on the pulse of pop culture. We’re a huge fan of their styling products too, like Micro Mist hairspray and Keratin Smooth Spray.
Best Hair Oil: Rodin by Recline Hair Oil
If you want to feel utterly fab, then slather on our favorite hair oil this year, Rodin by Recine Hair Oil! Comprised of eight powerhouse oils like sunflower, apriot and jojoba, this oil is incredibly moisturizing without weighing down the hair and smells divine. RODIN by RECINE Hair Oil was created with the renowned hair artist, Bob Recine, who has had decades of experience in the hair and fashion industry. In addition to styling countless icons for shows and shoots, Bob has held major installations around the world, is a revered photographer, and has published a book, Bob Recine: Alchemy of Beauty.
Best Hair Fragrance: Gisou Hair Fragrance
Created by one of our favorite super-influencer hair muses, Negin Mirsalehi, Gisou launched their brand new hair fragrance this year and needless to say we are obsessed. The smell is absolute perfection and layers wonderfully with their hair oil, which snagged our fave hair oil in 2017.
Best Dry Shampoo: Kevin Murphy Fresh Hair
For instant freshness with the silkiest scent, Kevin Murphy’s Fresh Hair is our choice for dry shampoo. We’re also obsessed with the brand itself and all of the major changes it’s making to reduce plastic waste–even using ocean trash to make a portion of it’s packaging.
Best Leave-in Conditioner: IGK Thirsty Girl
Never underestimate the importance of a leave-in conditioner! At least, that’s the mantra our editors follow. Just a few spritzes of IGK’s Thirsty Girl on damp locks before air dry or styling will leave your strands healthy and hydrated. We’re a big fan!
Breakout Hair Brand of 2018: Good Dye Young
It takes a lot to make a splash in the hair industry, and Good Dye Young did just that this year with their colorful entrance of fun,semi-permanent hair colors and hair makeup! Their ultrabright, mixable hair color with conditioning sunflower extract and bergamot essential oil are sold at Sephora, and we can’t wait to see what else the brand launches in the new year.
Best Shampoo: Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal +Coconut Micro-Exfoliating Shampoo
Finding a great shampoo that works with different hair types and textures can be really tough. But this fan favorite seems to satisfy everyone who uses it. Briogeo’s Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Micro-Exfoliating Shampoo lightly exfoliates the scalp, removing any product build-up and flakiness without stripping the sensitive skin on your scalp.
Best Conditioner: Olaplex No. 5
Olaplex is a hairstylist and colorist favorite and now that consumers can also get their Olaplex fix via No. 3, 4 & 5–Olaplex’s No. 5 conditioner, filled with the brand’s signature Bond Building Chemistry, has become a quick favorite for restoring, repairing, and hydrating the hair.
Most Underrated Hair Product: Gorilla Snot Gel
Gorilla Snot Gel–not the most glamorous sounding name, but who needs glamour when the hold is this good? Our team of Mane Addicts stylists swears by Gorilla Snot Gel for all of their intricate updos and braids. Underrated, no doubt–you can pick it up for less than $3 on Amazon or Walmart!
Best Brush: Sheila Stotts Brush
For a top quality brush at a reasonable price point, we’re crushing on Sheila Stotts! They detangle quickly, never get tripped up on extensions and have a chic wooden handle. Perfect if your brush (and vanity) is in need of a stylish upgrade.
Best Hairdryer: Dyson
Is there any other hairdryer that even comes close to the Dyson? In our editorial opinion, nope! The Dyson–with it’s revolutionary design and ability to cut drying time in half–is still one of the most groundbreaking inventions to date in the hair space next to the Air Wrap styler, Dyson’s newest launch this year.
Best Curler: Beachwaver
If you’re looking for fool-proof curls, look no further than the Beachwaver, which basically takes all of the work out of curling your hair. A favorite by celebrities and backstage at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, the Beachwaver is a must for anyone wanting Angel-worthy waves.
Best Flat Iron: Harry Josh
Harry Josh’s iconic mint green flat iron is one that you’ll see wrapped up in the kit’s of all the great hairstylists.
Best Hair Gummies: Olly Nutrition
We can’t deny our love for all things Olly. We take the Beauty gummies on the reg and have been known to pop a variety from Stress to Vibrant Skin to Sleep when we need to wind down in the evening. Not only do Olly gummies taste like a total treat, they actually work too!