Taking a lead on critical business topics the day following the Australian Hair Fashion Awards, L’Oréal Professionnel gathered some of the nation’s biggest and brightest salons into a full day of hair insights, culture curation and business building, writes Cameron Pine.

The creative minds that came together for the Australian Hair Fashion Awards would only be half way there without some business boosting brainpower and a good old fashioned dose of diligence to boot. So in response to this, L’Oréal Professionnel orchestrated a business event to inspire, educate and support their partner salons. The result; a full day of salon ready ideas that reared even the weariest of Australian Hair Fashion Awards party heads.


Newly appointed General Manager of L’Oréal Professionnel General Manager Olga Zanetti spoke of L’Oréal Professionnel’s commitment to supporting the salon industry. “L’Oréal Professionnel is a really dynamic and iconic brand and it’s heritage is underpinned by constant product innovation, extensive business and artistic education offerings and our unwavering passion for the industry,” said Olga.

“But the heart of L’Oréal Professionnel’s success is powered by the people it supports – it’s you, the hairdressers and salon owners and we are here to help you achieve your business goals,” she said.

Professional Products Division General Manager, Arnaud Trevisani also greeted guests on ‘maximizing our wonderful industry coming together’ for the AHFA’s, equally as delighted to host the first L’Oréal Professionnel hair insights forum. As a group, the hair insights forum as such became a candid exploration of team development, goal setting, social media and profile building through artistic opportunities.


With a highly engaging line up, guest speakers included Naomi Simson from Channel 10’s Shark Tank and Founding Director of Redballoon; Ann-Marie Mason who talked about creating a champion team, the latest statistics on social media with Kate Hughes and an interactive hair demo and Q&A with current Hairdresser of the Year Damien Rinaldo and L’Oréal National Artistic Field Manager, Debbie Biddle.


Damien set creativity to new heights by deconstructing leading looks from the Zhivago fashion and hair showcase the awards the night before. With a quarter of a century in the industry and a collective of leading awards, Damien added further stardom to the collaboration of the L’Oréal Professionnel Artists team. The innovative hair tapestry technique was fused with catwalk looks for the ideal amount of Zhivago drama. Damien’s runway look was a glossy, directional ponytail, parted to the side and perfected with intricate tapestry detailing and colour work. The Tecni.art team spoke about the importance of artistic experience for your business and encouraged salons to structure and plan artistic opportunities and to create a culture that values and respects the artistic cause. Scott Sloan from Sloans, Brad Rixon from Rixon Hair, Melissa Gesualdo from Reno’s and Peter Thomsen from The Chelsea all presented their own interpretation of Damien’s look.


Next up was one of our most respected industry business experts – Anne-Marie Mason spoke about what it takes to create a champion team. General Manager of the Oscar Oscar group Anne-Marie spoke of the most critical and practical requirements to any business –how to create a team code and getting them excited about numbers. “It’s also about putting the heart back into business. Joy is about delivering the best experience for your guest,” she said.

Anne-Marie Mason

Redballoon Founding Director and figure television sensation series Shark Tank, Naomi Simpson, gave business insight with an underlying current of never giving up – always maintaining a sense of humour and living a mantra of honesty.

“I believe that we need more role models, people that can be trusted, counted on and believed in – I had strong female role models and I am proud to be that person for others,” Naomi said.

From its humble beginnings in Naomi Simson’s front room in an inner suburb of Sydney to creating a much loved Australian brand, Naomi also shared what she believed to have been the drivers behind RedBalloon’s success. RedBalloon as a platform has changed the way we give gifts in Australia. With a comedic nature she adequately shared the secrets, business concepts and elements to continually driving growth and innovation.


Urging guests to play a bigger game and to reassess how their choices make a difference to others as well as igniting the best points of reference for a customer service culture, Naomi showcased just the right amount of heart-felt leadership.

Digital expert at L’Oréal Professionnel Kate Parker gave an insight into who our customers really are and how to find them by maximizing social media.

According to Kate people now spend an average of 21 minutes per day on Instagram and share more than 70 million photos. Of this, she says that 60 per cent are female, and that users share an average of 7 posts per month. Kate then revealed some of the best ways to get cut-through and to not be afraid of advertising and boosting posts to gain a greater reach.

“Know your audience, don’t get sucked by the numbers and use social media that suits you (and them) the best. Be conservative about what you can achieve – pick one or two channels and master them through experimentation,” Kate said.

From business boosting initiatives to salon culture and back to the heart of hairdressing, it’s no wonder the biggest advice for salon owners throughout the day was to ‘Live what you Love’, and we’re not just talking about the name of Naomi Simson’s new book.

For more information visit lorealprofessionnel.com.au