San Clemente’s Stephanie Carrillo will travel to D.C. as a finalist for best shag haircut

By Zara Flores

Local hot shot hair stylist Stephanie Carrillo has had a passion for hair since she grew up. As a 10-year-old Carrillo remembers watching her hair stylist cut her own hair, entranced by the movements around her head. After that appointment, something clicked. Carrillo and even her hair dresser knew that she would have a future in hair, given the close attention she paid to the process. After graduating from San Clemente High School, Carrillo went directly into beauty school and later began an apprenticeship at Salon Gregorie’s in Newport Beach, where she stayed for 12 years.

“It’s so exciting and fun, never monotonous; I’m doing what I love,” Carrillo said about her career.

After visualizing and dreaming of her own salon, along with a little elbow grease and a lot of determination, Carrillo opened the Modest Spot in San Clemente. That was eight years ago. With an eye on the future of her business, Carrillo is planning to make additions and expansions that will continue to improve her home-away-from-home.

Stephanie Carrillo at her salon, Modest Spot in San Clemente, 106 W Mariposa. Photo: Zara Flores.
Stephanie Carrillo at her salon, Modest Spot in San Clemente, 106 W Mariposa. Photo: Zara Flores.

Recently, the business owner and mother of three was selected as a finalist in the #ONESHOT Behind the Chair Hair Awards, a global competition in which thousands and thousands of hair stylists compete and show off their skills under the Instagram hashtag ONESHOT.

Out of a total of 311,000 entries from 80 countries and 35 categories, Carrillo was one of about 25 other finalists selected for the “HOT SHOT” category’s best shag haircut.

Carrillo will travel to Washington, D.C. for a prestigious Behind the Chair awards show, which begins Aug. 24 and features 158 artists and more than 20 industry classes.

Classes and furthering education are highly regarded and encouraged among hair stylists. They are seen as an investment that comes to fruition with how clients’ hair looks, and they can set stylists apart from the rest. Carrillo says there is always a new technique or trend coming out, and there’s always something more to learn.

“It’s our civic duty that we stay on top of trends, techniques, products, etc.,” said Carrillo. “Quality education is only going to benefit you.”

Carrillo entered into a couple of other categories such as color and Balayage, but the results have yet to be determined.

All winners will be announced on August 25 during the Behind the Chair show in D.C.

Stephanie Carrillo’s salon, Modest Spot, is located at 106 W Mariposa. For more information about her salon or the competition, visit or



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