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Redken Symposium 2015

Continuing the obsession for the world’s best educational event, The Redken Symposium gathered more than 9,000 hairdressers in Las Vegas for an unforgettable celebration of some of the world’s latest and greatest, writes Cameron Pine

Every two years the Mandalay Bay hotel and conference centre is taken over by a culture of hairdressers and artists that continue to prove, beyond all challenges why Redken is the only brand to learn better, earn better and live better.

Opening with an incredible grand opening gala incorporating leading artists from all corners of the globe Redken devotees came together to share and celebrate a love of hair and a brand that goes beyond the shelf and into the hearts of many.


Grand Opening Gala

Celebrating both past and new product innovations, the grand opening energised the audience as models rode in on Harley’s – capturing the true brand essence of the new Blonde idol range. Some of our local heroes including Kristina Russell, Phil Barwick, Vincent Nobile, Richard Kavanagh, Dmitri Papas and Justin Pace graced the stage with their models among what seemed to be hundreds of other models, a strong link to fashion and entertainment that raised the roof – the Symposium energy was truly palpable.

Forever linked to fashion and the tireless inspiration from Guido Palau, a catwalk section saw a backstage environment re-created on stage, with models rocking what seemed to be hundreds of looks he mastered during the fashion week seasons.

The night couldn’t be completed without a tribute to the late Redken founder Paula Kent Meehan and her vision to create a brand that truly made a difference to people’s lives, a brand based on science and results that quickly forged a name as a ‘must-have’ product around the globe.

The next two days were filled with classes on colour, trends, design, business and social media and, unlike any other educational event, classes alternated throughout the day ensuring you didn’t miss a single thing.


Beauty and the Brits, hair by Andrew Barton and Lee Sanford

The Redken Symposium app was free for everyone to download and gave a summary of each class, scheduling, event details and more – it also enabled a dialogue between the audience and artists with a ‘session question and answer’, topped off by hundreds of ‘ask me for help’ Redken event staff – Redken ensured nobody missed one bit of some of the globes latest looks. From seamless scheduling to an insight into the Redken Gallerie where the world of Redken is celebrated in every detail, there was something for every level of hairdresser or salon owner – this year the Gallerie featured an installation of headpieces from Guido Palau and product displays to truly inspire the future Redken tribe.

This year more than 100 Australian salon owners, managers and hairdressers attended and were treated to an opening cocktail party at the illustrious Wynn hotel before front row seats to ‘La Reve, The Dream’ – an unforgettable showpiece of choreography, acrobatics and water mastery before retreating to Mandalay Bar eye candy for drinks and networking among other Redken attendees and artists.


La Reve, The Dream

“I’ve returned from another brilliant as ever Symposium experience with an excited team of business owners and its only January. I’m so excited about 2015 and sharing some of our learnings,” said Oscar Oscar General Manager Anne Maree Mason.

It wouldn’t be a Symposium without an appearance from Rodney Cutler – stolen by America, Rodney’s accent still remains and his class ‘Ready to Wear’ with David Stanko brought the streets of New York and high fashion to the forefront with usable hair techniques and shortcuts to save time and money for everyone.

Redken colour continues to be a driving force behind the brand with highly successful ranges like Chromatics and the recently released colour blur technique and blur brush – creativity is at an all time high.

“My passion is colour and I love ‘hair painting’. My preferred colour for hair painting is Chromatics not just because its ammonia free and gives 4 dimensional shine but it doesn’t swell. As a colourist I love to do things freehand– I left hairdressing for a few years to go to art school so for me this colour is a bit like an art paint. When creating a haircolour I want to encourage you to use brush strokes and making an artistic choice,” Kristina said. Kristina also revealed some hidden formulations that can make the most of colour you already have sitting in your colour bar.


Paint Shop with Kristina Russell

Phil and Richard created interpretations of ‘on-trend’ creations with more of an everyday wearable edge – using new Redken ‘braid aid’ products not yet released in Australia. Phil worked with short hair while Richard perfected a signature done yet ‘undone’ braided look. According to Redken every year eight of the top 10 trends are created by Redken artists and the Trend Report was the ultimate summary of all the styles clients have been asking for.


The Trend Report, hair by Richard Kavanagh

“It’s about taking more of a runway edge and a runway line of products with more of a salon look. We are going to bring out the runway edge of where these looks came from but with more of a salon feel,” Phil said.


The Trend Report, hair by Richard Kavanagh, Phil Barwick, Jorge Joao and Justin Isaac

Vincent Nobile was all about salon sensibility as well with the business of blonde at the forefront for a focused class to help colourists further master the biggest money maker in many salons.


Vincent Nobile in Blonde Society

“As a colourist I look at my appointment book and have a half head of foils time after time. As much as this can be boring I like money so I don’t want foils to be out. I want foils to be in. I want to be able to use new innovative techniques to reduce the time – get maximum effect and in turn more money for the salon,” Vincent said in his Blonde Society class. Another all-time favourite is myths, legends and perceptions busted that presented perfect solutions for clients pressed for time as well as gentleman’s club that went beyond the barber chair for some real men’s styling tips including long-hair styling and up-styling for men – perfect for the long hair phenomenon that continues in and out of men’s styling trends.


Gentleman’s Club

Redken ambassador Anne Mincey knows more than anyone about how to connect with clients – a published author and inspirational keynote at many Redken events, Anne revealed tips on how leading stylists create clients so loyal that they almost want to go home with them. Business continued with Blair Singer – one of the world’s leading business brains, Blair uncovered all of the things that hold people back from achieving the ultimate salon business.


Blair Singer

Three amazing days led by some of the finest educators in the world and topped with some of the most memorable nights and parties and there’s no wonder why 2015 Symposium was back bigger and better than ever. For those part of the tribe there is certainly no alternative and for salons wanting to make more money well there really is no excuse but to get inspired and be part of it.

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