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4 Australian Colourists You Need To Know and Why

Often overlooked for their stylist counterpart, not only are technicians the bread and butter of the salon but if it weren’t for their careful application, nutty-professor-like mixations and in depth understanding of the colour spectrum paired with respect for the integrity of hair, our hero Australian stylists slash hairdressers of the year would be several trophies less.

So we’re sending a little shout out to all of Australia’s invaluable technicians, the ones who shed colour and light on our industry every day, with a special tip of the hat to four of our favourites.

Michael Kelly

Salon: Oscar Oscar Paddington, Sydney @oscaroscarpaddington

Instagram: @_mkau

Props Because: Our Deputy Editor of INSTYLE is one of the fussiest clients going around, and heralds Michael as one of the best balyage technicians in Sydney, and perhaps even Australia. According to Lauren, seamless is an understatement with Michael, and a service with this guy is akin to a total makeover – prepare to feel fresher, brighter and brimming with confidence.


Not to mention the fact Kelly was at the helm of the ‘pink’ movement – mixing up a tailored result for the inimitable Anna Plunkett, designer of hero Australian fashion label Romance Was Born, exactly 134 weeks ago (thanks Instagram).


Anna Plunkett

Marie Uva

Salon: UVA, Prahran, Melbourne @uvasalon

Instagram: @marieuva

Props Because: This woman is the queen of sunkissed brunettes, and the best colour-friend of pretty much every glamour girl in Melbourne. Bec Judd seems to post more about her hair (Marie) than she does anything else and Megan Gale’s rich raven locks have never been such a feature.

Megan Gale

Megan Gale

The beauty of Marie is she knows how her signature colour should be styled and has in turn earned herself a Fairy Godmother reputation for creating long, lush-tousled beach babe bounce – those fictional Walt Disney-waves we grew up desiring are brought to life, yet with raw Australian sex appeal.

Bec Judd Portsea Polo

Bec Judd

Matt Clements

Salon: Assembly Hair, Sunshine Coast, Queensland @assemblyhair

Instagram: @el_presidente_matt

Props Because: Beyond the fact he’s taken out Hair Expo Australian Colourist of the Year three times (and we can’t deny we have a massive soft spot for Matt and wife Kristin’s divine little girl, Reno – to die for!), Matt is, as far as we’re concerned, the main man behind what is about to be a fluorescent-yellow highlighter pen explosion on the streets.

New Image

Colourist to Ainsley Hutchence of raw Australian creative agency; Sticks and Stones, Matt has taken the tattooed fashion-goddess from buttery blonde to pink-tangerine and now, ultimate highlighter pen. The look is 100 per cent rad, and despite what has no doubt been a somewhat traumatic experience for her hair, Ainsley’s strands looks healthier than ever. Matt’s Midas touch.


Ainsley Hutchence

Ash-Leigh Croker

Salon: Valonz, Paddington, Sydney @valonzhaircutters

Instagram: @sydneysbesthaircolourists

Props Because: Renya Xydis’ ultimate wing woman, Ash Croker is the force behind a multitude of trends defining Australian editorials and campaigns, with one of our highlights being the dip-dyed colour effect defining fashion designer, Camilla’s most recent collection.

Camilla Campaign

Camilla Campaign

Ash has a way of making colour heroic yet in an understated way, ensuring her work never overrides the hair styling, wardrobe, lighting or makeup direction, yet harmonizes with all elements effortlessly while promoting her skill (hair colour) as integral to the image at hand. It is talent like this that raises the profile of professional hairdressing, an invaluable asset to the Australian industry.


Renya Xydis

Not to mention Ash moves Renya’s divine pastel colour from dusty pink to muted lavender, and we love Ren’s hair colour, so much.

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