It was another sensational year at Salon International, with 40,219 guests flooding through the doors of ExCeL London for three days of hairdressing inspiration, education and innovation.
Guests from across the globe attended the annual industry extravaganza, which this year also played host to Wella’s International TrendVision international finale. Finalists from 44 countries competed on the show floor on Saturday and were supported by the thousands who had travelled with them, creating their national winning looks in front of the crowds. The evening ceremony saw Mana Dave and Kylie Hayes, both of New Zealand awarded the Platinum ColorVision and CreativeVision awards, respectively. Also taking home prizes on the night were: People’s Choice Award ColorVision, Taner YilDiz of Turkey; People’s Choice Award CreativeVision, Kai Jung of South Korea; Bronze Award ColorVision, Vic Chung of Taiwan; Bronze Award CreativeVision, Chu Lin of Taiwan; Silver Award ColorVision goes to Alexander de Lara of Philippines; Silver Award CreativeVision, Marina Krusheinitskaia of Russia; Gold Award ColorVision, Jose Quiñones of Puerto Rico and Gold Award CreativeVision, Gisleine Bernhardt. The iconic Annie Humphreys was also recognised with the Wella TrendVision Lifetime Achievement Award for her 50 years of colour dedication.
TrendVision also saw inspiring shows from a bevy of British hairdressers and salons including HOB, Sanrizz, Robert Eaton and Marc Antoni. Andreas Kurkowitz, the new global colour ambassador for Wella Professionals presented the trends for Spring/Summer 2018, which focused on ‘non-touring’ and gender fluid colour placement.
Competitions were a theme throughout the weekend, with HJ crowning their own winners in a series of competitions, all of which were hosted on the show floor. Congratulations to Afro Stylist of the Year, Aycan Kemel; Men’s Afro Stylist of the Year, sponsored by Andis, Graham Grimshaw; Barber of the Year sponsored by Andis, Kilian Maddison; Extension Specialist of the Year, sponsored by Remi Cachet, Helen Richardson and Bridal Hairdresser of the Year, Lea Arraez. City & Guilds also celebrated emerging talent, with their Ladies Commercial and Men’s Cut and Finish competitions, won by Lorenza Sanfillipo and Ben Clifford-Stephenson respectively.
The most prestigious competition in hairdressing, HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards sponsored by Schwarzkopf Professional was also one of the standout attractions with the annual unveiling of the finalists’ and nominees’ images attracting thousands of visitors. British nominees, including the legendary session stylist, Eugene Souleiman rubbed shoulders with guests as they browsed the always-inspirational gallery of images.
Hairdressing legends were on hand throughout the show to inspire guests and share their knowledge, both with creative presentations on the Fellowship for British Hairdressing and HJ Stages, and in the Legends Lounge, where Lee Stafford, Charles Worthington, Errol Douglas, Andrew Collinge and Beverly C told the stories of their success.
Elsewhere in the show, inspiration was to be found at every stand with leading names including Robert Cromeans, Zoe Irwin and Hooker & Young demonstrating the latest launches from brands, giving the newest product additions their stamp of approval through trend-led presentations.
As the biggest industry showcase in the country, there was no shortage of hot product releases to be found at Salon International. WAHL presented a brand new women’s styling range, with a hairdryer and styling iron, while for ghd it was all about the Contour; their updated take on a crimping iron for texture and volume. BaByliss PRO presented the Perfect Curl MKII to create effortless curls, waves or ringlets at the flick of a switch, and label.m unveiled their range of accessories – the perfect addition to their newly-launched blow-dry menu.
It wasn’t just about new releases though, with many brands celebrating big birthdays at the event. Kent Brushes celebrated 240 years, Crazy Colour marked 40 years on their eye-popping stand, Andis marked their 90th anniversary and Manic Panic brought over their legendary founders Tish and Snooky to kick off their 40th birthday celebrations.
As well as shopping, Salon International is all about the shows, with Trevor Sorbie, Patrick Cameron, Sassoon Academy, TONI&GUY, RUSH and BaByliss PRO presenting in Salon Live, whilst Mahogany, hosted their ever popular seminars.
For Trevor, it was an emotional return to the stage after his retirement from live work more than a decade ago. Alongside members of his team, he shared his inspirations and how innovative starting points can lead to breathtaking, unexpected results. Patrick Cameron proved why he’s the king of long hair with his latest collection, Easy Classics. In typically effervescent style, he breezed through ten models with a series of simple, take-back-to-the-salon techniques for dressing hair. Sassoon Academy celebrated the sheer skill of hairdressing, with an impassioned return to the craftsmanship of colour and precision cutting techniques, no matter how subtle the end results. TONI&GUY presented Futurewise; their latest trend-led collection of cuts, colours and styles. However, it was their fashion week and avant-garde artistry which drew gasps from the crowd as snow fell and fire lit up the stage in a deeply inspiring show. For BaByliss PRO it was all about rising star, Ky Wilson, who presented Session to Salon; a celebration of runway looks and the techniques and tricks that can be employed to take the looks back to clients in the salon.
The Mahogany seminar saw the salon group’s creative team present Curve-Linear, an architecture-inspired collection that’s all about soft, curving lines and a couture colour palette. At RUSH Live, creativity was matched with charity as the team created looks ranging from commercial to avant-garde, all in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital.
Looking back on the three-day event, HJ managing director Mark Moloney said,
It was another action-packed weekend of hairdressing inspiration, education and excitement with the show attracting more salon owners, stylists and colour technicians than before, generating great business for our exhibitors. The show is growing each and every year and we’re delighted to attract guests from all over the globe to come and celebrate what’s great about British hairdressing. Salon International is a cornerstone of the industry and it’s an honour to know that it’s such a huge event in the calendar for hairdressers. This industry is worth £6billion and we’re immensely proud to be able to contribute to that.