Hair Tips from Maki J’s Salon and J Beverly Hills

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Maki J's Salon Collage

The beautiful historic building in downtown Howell that houses Maki J’s Salon. Photos by Miraya Dust.

The post below is sponsored by Maki J’s Salon. All opinions expressed are my own.

I had the privilege of attending an open house for Maki J’s Salon, a growing boutique salon in my hometown of Howell. While there, I met owner Jill Mackey and celebrity stylist and professional color developer Max Eli of J Beverly Hills hair products, which are available at Maki J’s.

I loved learning how engaged Jill is in the community, and her commitment to selling environmentally friendly products like J Beverly Hills. As someone who is so not on-par with the hair world, I learned SO much. I can’t wait to apply some of the tricks I learned to my own hair life {which is currently at a stall as I grow it out to donate}!

Jill Mackey and Max Eli

Jill Mackey of Maki J’s Salon and Max Eli of J Beverly Hills

I asked for your questions on my Facebook page and here’s what Jill and Max had to say. Both are a wealth of knowledge and I undoubtedly would trust either to do anything to my hair :)


Q. What are ways to make color last longer?

A. Professional grade products that are paraban and sulfate-free are key. Also, make sure to use a great conditioner, and do things like wear a hat at the beach and immediately rinse your hair after playing in the water.

Q. Best way to keep blonde from turning brassy/ashy?

A. First, when coloring, the stylist should use a vita-based solution. Second, it’s crucial to use a shampoo specifically made for blonde hair. J. Beverly Hills makes a “Blonde” shampoo that is perfect for this exact reason because it neutralizes unwanted tones and adds brightness to reduce yellow tones.

This product can be purchased at Maki J’s of course, but if you’re not local, it is also available on Amazon here.

Q. Best inexpensive shampoo and conditioner for color-treated hair?

A. This was a toughie. As stylists, they believe there is nothing available that even comes close to touching salon-grade shampoos. Max specifically mentioned Johnson & Johnson products and shampoos like Head & Shoulders are some of the absolute worst offenders on hair in general — especially if it’s color-treated. You are better off buying a professional shampoo and using it just a few times a week to make it last longer.

Q. What is the best shampoo for long, untreated hair?

A. Without physically touching your hair, this was a hard question for Jill and Max to answer. Something I learned was that you may need two different kinds of shampoo for the top of your head versus your ends. Jill suggests a gentle ‘everyday’ shampoo and conditioner free of sulfates and parabans, and to do a masque treatment like this one from J Beverly Hills on the hair once a week to help maintain scalp and hair health.

J Beverly Hills at Maki J's Salon

J Beverly Hills products at Maki J’s Salon

Q. What is an easy, mom-friendly hairdo?

A. This depends a lot on facial shape/structure and the texture and thickness of your hair. But, the short, tousled look tends to be the easiest look to maintain.

Q. What do I ask for to get multi-dimensional color? Highlights? Lowlights? Both? Neither?

A. Say exactly that — dimensional color. A professional stylist should understand what that means and be able to work with you to find the perfect shades to complement your skin tone and eyes.

Q. I’m no longer dying my hair and it gets greasy really fast. What can I do besides keep dying it?

A. Jill and Max in unison — change shampoos! Make sure it’s paraban and sulfate-free, too. Those chemicals don’t do the hair any good.

Q. What is the best way to combat winter static?

A. Moisture! Make sure to use a quality moisturizing conditioner. You can also use a spray-on leave in conditioner. Also, love this tip — instead of rubbing your hair dry, simply squeeze it with a towel so it doesn’t frazzle the hair cuticles and cause both frizz and static.

Q. I’ve been using semi-permanent color on my brown and white hair. Lately, the white won’t color. Is there a better non-permanent solution?

A. You’ll want to use a quality hair color with low alkalinity to help reveal the hair structure. The semi-permanent colors associated with quality products like J. Beverly Hills should do the trick.

Q. What trends are IN for 2014? What trends are out?

A. First, ombre and chunky stripes are OUT. “Naturalizing” the hair is IN. What this means, is your stylist takes the hair one shade darker and one shade lighter. Also, sand/natural blonde colors and chocolates are super hot right now.

Another item that is out? The flat-iron. Max stressed to me how horrible these can be for hair. If you do use it, use only an ionic or ceramic iron and use it on medium heat only — never ever on high. If you have time in the morning, instead of using a flat or curling iron, go for soft curls, which can be made with velcro rollers.

Maki J’s Salon is located at 122 State St. in downtown Howell. To schedule an appointment with Jill, call (517) 540-1412.

Stylists: Jill is also looking to hire! If you’re looking to work with a great, hard-working gal, give her a call or send an email to

Learn more about Maki J’s Salon by following them at the links below:

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