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Shu Uemura Launches Editrorial Competition

Shu Uemura Art of Hair’s first ever professional awards competition in Australia is upon us. It’s time to become acquainted with the MUSE IMAGE awards, a contest that could see your work splashed across the pages of INSTYLE. With submissions having opened on March 21st, and entries closing on June 19th, you have months to create a concept, aesthetic and image that challenges your creative boundaries, and gives you the chance to win.


The MUSE IMAGE Awards were built as a national competition that celebrates the artistry, craftsmanship and skill in the hairdressing community. Shu Uemura initially created the event as a testament to the brand’s commitment to innovation, and it is now set to be an annual opportunity.

“This is an incredible milestone for Shu Uemura Art of Hair in Australia,” said Sandra Kelly, General Manager of Shu Uemura Art of Hair. “After launching in the market four years ago, it’s now time to take things to the next level. This competition is about showcasing the incredible talent within our industry; it’s about building and recognising the dynamic artists within our own local Shu community and highlighting their art and skill on an international level. Our brand is intrinsically linked to art, so what better way to celebrate than through a new national competition?”

Shu Uemura’s Japanese roots shine though, with the theme for 2016 being ‘Tokyo Vibe’. This means your inspiration will come directly from the neon lights and busy streets that define the vibrant city life of the Japanese capital. The brief is to create a piece of hair art, and really utilise the muse of Tokyo in creating something daring and unique. The winner will have employed elements of cutting, styling, texture and shape to bring these themes and images to life with an original interpretation.

“A Muse is a person who is the source of inspiration,” explained the brand’s National Education Manger, Bridget Noonan. “The MUSE IMAGE Awards is all about being inspired and having the freedom to explore different ideas and create something beautiful. The team and I are very excited about this competition, as it brings a new dimension to our brand here in Australia.”


To enter, stylists are required to create one hair style, based on the Tokyo Vibe aesthetic. The hair look must be created using Shu Uemura Art of Hair products, and entrants must also submit a mood board that showcases the concept behind the look, and a paragraph explaining the mood board. Entrants should submit two photos of the model – a before and after shot – in a high resolution, A4 format, and print and complete the application form found on Hairdressers are allowed one application only and must work for a Shu Uemura partner salon.

Now for the fun stuff – what do you win? Five finalists will be announced on August 4th, and flown down to Melbourne to take part in an all-expenses paid professional MUSE Gallery photo shoot to recreate their winning look. Then, the winner will be announced at an exclusive Sydney event in September, taking home prizes such as a full year’s supply of Shu Uemura Art of Hair products and an artwork of their winning look. You’ll also see your work in print, with editorial exposure in glossy consumer magazines and in a ten page professional shoot with the competition’s trade media partner INSTYLE. You’ll also be profiled in INSTYLE and on Styleicons.

“We want our entire Shu Uemura Artistic community to be involved in this competition. For seasoned competition participants, it provides another platform for them to flex their creative skills, while for others who may have limited experience in entering industry competitions, it’s a fantastic way to get involved,” Bridget shared. “Once selected as a finalist, they will be mentored and coached by industry experts throughout the entire competition, learning how to perfect their craft and receiving advice from some of the best in the business.”


We’re sure you want to see your work realised in print, and let’s be honest, you’ll be showing those magazines to anyone who’ll listen for months after. We don’t blame you; this competition could catapult your editorial career. Simply put yourself in the Tokyo mind frame and start styling – and the next time we see you, you could be backstage at your very own editorial shoot.

Good luck!

Send application form, mood board, paragraph and images to:

Muse image awards, Alyssa Ramage
Lvl 12, 564 St Kilda Rd
Melbourne VIC
Australia 3004

Entries must be received no later than 19 June 2016.

For more information visit

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