I feel so lucky to be able to work every day doing what I love, but I especially love the joy it brings me to have people of all ages, genders, and styles sit in my chair, be able to connect with them one on one, and outwardly portray what they visualize as their style (but pictures do help!).
Jen Astengo is the owner and mastermind behind Salvage Hair Studio in San Dimas, CA. After working for over a decade at a luxury salon and day spa in La Verne, Jen used her 17+ years of experience to found Salvage Hair Studio in 2020. She is a true professional in an amazing industry and a stylist that has been extensively trained with some of the industry’s top product lines, including Bumble and Bumble, Aveda, Enjoy, UNITE, Davines, and much more.
Jen is not your average stylist – she’s also a professional educator/trainer who’s used her experience and expertise to create and run her own successful apprenticeship program (which has produced many talented and successful stylists). What makes Jen the mastermind behind Salvage Hair Studio is her belief that the work she does is more than just a color, ombré, balayage, or great hair cut – it’s about trust, honesty (like telling you not to do something drastic, like cutting your hair right after a bad break-up!), communication, mutual respect, encouragement, and sharing her work with aspiring stylists who look to further their education before becoming professionals on their own.
Above all, Jen believes that every stylist who walks through her doors at Salvage is more than just part of the salon’s staff – they’re family, and she feels lucky and blessed to have loved every moment of her career and she hopes to bring that positive energy every day to her stylists and clients alike.
Favorite Quote: “Give a girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world” – Marilyn Monroe
Amanda Palmer has been in retail and customer service for over 14 years.
Before joining the team at Salvage, Amanda worked as a leading pet stylist and academy instructor for fellow pet stylists. On top of her knowledge in pet services, Amanda has also maintained design and product solutions for a range of organizations and non-profits.
From fur to hair, Amanda strives to create meaningful interactions through thoughtful design for Salvage. She loves helping people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired – her goal is simple: to celebrate individuality and empower our clients to find confidence, community, and joy through beauty.
Some of Amanda’s favorite cuts and styles are bobs, blunt cuts, ombré, and vivid color. Amanda loves any expression that’s out of the norm, branches out of that classic beauty, and allows people to stand out.
In her free time, Amanda enjoys going for long walks with her dogs, hiking, yoga, and painting.
Amanda’s favorite quote is “Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take out breath away.” – Maya Angelou
Hi there! I’m Erica. I’ve been a stylist for 7 years.
I got into this industry when I was living in New York City, where I started as a receptionist at a salon on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Shortly after, I registered for and finished cosmetology school in 2012 and got licensed in NYC in 2013. Then, in 2017, I became licensed in CA. And now, here I am!
What I love most about the industry is that I not only get to know the clients in my chair but also get to work with incredibly talented people that teach me, encourage me, and challenge me to do something new every day.
I enjoy being creative with color and finish. There’s nothing like the feeling of fresh color and a beautiful style when you walk out of the salon.
Free time? Hah! What is that? Just kidding – I like reading, going to the golf range, and relaxing at the beach when I do have spare time. I also really enjoy spending time with my kids and watching them get into new things.
I live by these words: “Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.” Anonymous
I’ve been a hairstylist for 10 years.
Since I was a little girl, I’ve always wanted to be a hairstylist. Even when I was 8 and into Barbie dolls, all I ever wanted to do was cut their hair and switch up their clothing, so I went to the cosmetology program during my 2nd semester at Citrus College and worked toward becoming a stylist.
I love everything about being a hairstylist. My clients are the best and the sweetest, great to talk to and even just hang out with. I love how happy people are when their hair is all done and fresh, and the atmosphere at the salon makes it feel just like my second home.
My favorite cuts on women are a-line/lob for short hair and layers for long hair. I also do a lot of men’s cuts (and love when they bring a picture of how they want it to look!). When it comes to special events, I love creating up-dos or anything fun when with curls or loose waves to make someone feel extra beautiful. When it comes to coloring/foiling, I get a little quiet because I’m totally in the zone and it relaxes me.
In my free time, I LOVE to hang out with my family. I have a 5-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son who both keep me busy, along with 4 wiener dogs and a tortoise we love so much. We love little weekend getaways, whether we’re camping or just hanging out, and I love to go shopping, go to the movies, or just bake for fun.
One of my favorite quotes is “kindness is the language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”
Hi! I’m Debbie. I have been a hairstylist for 19 years. I always loved beauty and playing with people’s hair when I was young. As I got older, I knew I wanted to go to cosmetology school and see if I had what it took to be an amazing hairstylist.
The thing I love most about this industry is my clients. They have become family to me. We see our little clients grow and go off to college. We hurt when they hurt, and laugh when they laugh. But most of all, I love the look on their faces when we are done and they look in the mirror.
I love color and cuts equally. I love to consult with my clients to see what best suits them in color and their cut. Short razor cuts are one of my favorites, and so is playing with color and hearing my clients say that this is exactly what I wanted. Blow drying is also is a favorite of mine.
In my free time, I love to be with family. My husband and I love traveling, bike riding, reading a good book, and going out for dinner and drinks with friends.
My all-time favorite quote is “Prove yourself to yourself – not others.”
My name is Jesica! (only one “s”…weird, I know!) Some of my closest friends call me J.D.
For me, it all began in middle school when I became OBSESSED with hair! I picked up my first “black cherry” color box dye and dumped it all over my head. Seeing my hair change from brown to some sort of purple color was amazing to me. However, once it dried, I realized I missed so many spots and it was definitely not the color the box said. This led to my obsession in perfecting my hair color as correctly and as professionally as I could (from my bedroom),
Many years later, when I was barely 23, I gave birth to my beautiful daughter, Miss Audrie. Audrie was my inspiration to finally pursue my dream as a stylist. Now, here I am eight years later loving the industry just as much as I did then.
There’s something about seeing a client transform from start to finish – not only their hair, but also with more gratitude and self-confidence – when they leave the chair that ALWAYS pulls at my heart strings.
I enjoy performing most hair service, including color and balayage. However, extensions are definitely my favorite!
When I am not busy playing hair doctor, I am most likely trying to keep my super energetic Audrie busy! The world can be a complicated place sometimes...but hey: “Life is TOO short, so love the one you got!”
Hi! I’m Nicole. I’ve been a certified hairstylist since 2014. I got my start as a salon assistant, and after three short years, I began working full-time as a rental stylist.
Cosmetology first sparked my interest in this industry. When I was growing up, I’d always experiment with my friends’ hair, and when I was old enough, I decided to get my license. Since then, I’ve met amazing people who have helped me along the way to become the successful stylist I am today.
I’m in love with the beauty industry. The true satisfaction a person feels after they get their hair done, along with the energy and creativity that goes on in salons like Salvage Hair Studio, truly makes working in this industry a joy and an honor to be a part of.
The best thing a person can ask me for when they sit in my chair is the right to express whatever I want on their hair. All hair types are welcome: the variety keeps my skills fresh and makes every experience eventful!
When I’m not in the salon expressing myself through your hair, I run to nature – plants and animals are my happy place. And when I’m not outdoors, working out and trying new recipes do my soul good.
My grandma always told us to “never give up”, and as I grow as a stylist in this industry, I’m happy for the opportunity that Salvage Hair Studio gives me to keep expressing myself in a salon that truly feels like family.
Hi! I’m Chelsie. I’ve been in the industry for 9 years.
I remember when I was 8 years old, I started seeing my aunt come home from cosmetology school with doll heads to work on them, and I just thought it was the coolest thing ever. Then, my Girl Scout troop went on a field trip to Citrus College Cosmetology school (which is where I ended up going) and I was just fascinated.
I took the Regional Occupational Program (ROP) Cosmo in high school and went on to pursue my dream when I was 20 – now, here I am 9 years later still loving what I do!
I love the people you get to meet in this industry. You meet all kinds of walks of life and they become family to you, from clients to other stylists. And it’s amazing to me how many lives you can touch by just doing your “job”: you become a friend, therapist, doctor, and comedian all while giving them a fresh new look, and I wouldn’t change that for the world!
I’m grateful that the balayage has changed this industry for the better – I love how many different ways there are to do them, and they all turn out fantastic. Making people blonder is so addicting to me. I just live for it!
When I’m not working, I like to spend time with my family and my dog. I love to travel, and I’m always looking for a new city to explore! I have also been a part of a trivia team for 3 years now at my favorite brewery, and sometimes I even get the chance to host. I am the life of the party: I’ll be the first one up to karaoke or on the dance floor – I love to entertain people!
Want an inspirational quote? Ask me in my chair – all my quotes are inappropriate. ;-)
Hi! I’m Nicole. I’ve been a hair stylist for just over 10 years.
I’ve loved playing with hair and makeup for as long as I can remember. When I was little and put in “time-out,” I would come out with clips and bows in my hair and lipstick on.
I fell in love with doing hair when I was on the dance team in high school. We would be on the big yellow bus on our way home from a competition, and while I was helping my friends take the buns out of their hair, I’d start playing with their hair and putting it into different fun up-dos. That turned into me being to go-to person for styling my friends’ hair and doing their makeup for school dances.
So one day, I was talking with my dad about struggling in my college chemistry class: I didn’t know what to do, but my dad told me, “you’ve always loved playing with hair and you’ve always done your friends’ hair for dances! Why don’t you go to cosmetology school and just go back to college if you don’t like it?”
Needless to say, I took his advice. I signed up for school and started working in a salon as a receptionist. I’m so glad I had that talk with my dad. And if that talk wasn’t enough for me to feel supported, my mom has been my biggest fan and was my first client. She loves getting her hair done so much that she books herself out for a year. I love what I do, and isn’t it funny that all I do in that back room is chemistry?
Being in the beauty industry gives me the opportunity to be creative and artistic. I love giving women confidence and helping them feel their best. I want everyone to feel amazing about themselves, as our hair is our crown.
I love transforming someone’s look, doing highlights, balayage, giving the perfect A-line cut, adding layers for volume, and trying new colors and styles on clients and having them leave feeling “WOWed.”
In my free time, my family is my life and my everything. I love playing hide-and-seek with my daughter and having her yell, “I LOVE YOU SO SO SO MUCH!” Heading to the beach is always healing, too.
My favorite saying is by the celebrated writer Maya Angelou: “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
I’m Danielle! I’ve been in the industry for 17 years. I’ve been interested in hair and makeup since I was young.
I love the personal relationships I’ve built with clients and making people feel good about themselves.
I don’t have a favorite service – but I truly enjoy that every service is unique and client-specific. I enjoy the creative aspect of customizing every service for each and every individual’s needs and wants.
In my free time, I enjoy everything outside and being with family!
I live my life by the phrase “carpe diem” – seize the day!
Hi! I’m Alison. I’ve been a hairstylist since 2002. I first realized that I had a talent for styling my friends’ hair in high school – so a week after graduating, I got a job as a receptionist at a luxury salon in La Verne. quickly realized that this was the industry for me.
There’s so much to love about being a hairstylist. But what I love most is the people. I’ve formed lifelong relationships and friendships with clients and coworkers alike throughout my career.
My favorite type of work to do as a stylist is big makeovers: to completely transform someone’s looks can change their entire life. It’s like I get to watch their confidence build up in themselves right in front of me, and the whole process is so fun! When I’m not at Salvage Hair Studio, I’m at home with my husband Ray and my daughter Avery going on all sorts of adventures, especially at our favorite place: Disneyland (we go as often we can!).
I also have some unbelievably amazing friends who I try to spend as much time as I can with. I live by the wise words of Dolly Parton: “If you see someone without a smile, give them one of yours.”