DAY ONE: DINNER AND A SHOW #salonsmart17

Following a day that took care of the business side of things, it was time to let creativity come to the fore with Paul Mitchell kicking off the evening’s entertainment with a beautiful live model presentation.

Delivered by a crack team of Paul Mitchell artistic educators, the stunning spot-lit sequence showcased the beauty and punch of the brand’s POP XG colour – and the audience was able to see close-hand the striking results.

A sumptuous three-course dinner followed before the audience settled down to enjoy a further exploration of colour in our COLOUR. CREATIVITY. CONVERSATION. LIVE! segment.

L’Oréal Professionnel artists, featuring Katie Allan (Charles Worthington), MJ Farmer (Rush), Jack Howard (Paul Edmonds) and Paul Dennison (Ken Picton Salon) took to the stage in turns to discuss the colour work on their chosen model, including the techniques and applications they’d used.

Hosted by education director for L’Oréal Professionnel , Darren Oram, the first artist to take to the stage was Jack Howard who showcased a classic balayage technique on a blonde. Jack also discussed the key turning points in his career, including when he went to the US to work. While he initially struggled with the balayage technique, Jack was determined to make it work for him, bringing the technique back to the UK in 2010. While trends are important, Jack finished by saying that there are around 240 micro trends on social media and that you can’t keep up with them all so staying true to you and your brand is what’s important.

Next up on stage was Rush’s MJ Farmer who proved that punk can be wearable with her modern, softer take on it. She said: “For me it’s all about education – that’s where I get my kicks. I used to be a L’Oréal Professionnel ID Artist and I’m now part of the Rush artistic team, so education is a really important way of keeping myself inspired. I get my inspiration from my surroundings and I love street art, such as graffiti.”

When it comes to the biggest colour business opportunities, MJ was also keen to stress that the client is what matters. “It’s about understanding their needs, while still sharing your trends and expertise with them. It’s about sharing something that’s just a little bit special with them,” added MJ.

Creative manager of Charles Worthington, Katie Allan, then took to the stage to present her beautiful brunette balayage model. Katie applied the balayage technique but within foil and used L’Oréal Professionnel’s Smartbond to keep the hair in tip top condition.

Katie has worked for Charles Worthington for seven years and she discussed with Darren the changing needs of clients. “Even if you only see your client three or four times a year, she’s changed in that time. We need to keep addressing their needs, while giving them ideas to grow,” she said.

Last but by no means least was Ken Picton’s Paul Dennison who showcased a look that was a play on the mod cut, featuring a dark silhouette in a mix of damson and cherry shades.

Paul started hairdressing in the ’90s, but it wasn’t until he joined Ken Picton that his career really took off. He now spends his time travelling the world, going from Jakarta to Peru, for the salon and L’Oreal, sharing his knowledge with other hairdressers (not to mention overcoming his fear of flying).

Paul ended the show by saying he believes hair is getting shorter and that every client, no matter where you are or what you’re doing, needs to be taken on a journey.