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The Wrap: Hair Expo 2018 Education Agenda

Hair Expo 2018 was a whirlwind of products, performances and top-tier education, and INSTYLE somehow made it to every class between us to see what was being taught to our hairdressing community. Between an insane 37 classes across Sunday and Monday of the event, as well as Top Salon Summit on the Saturday, the expo covered everything from creative hair in cut, colour, texture and style, to business education, to men’s hair and more, from a host of local and international hairdressers. Intimate workshops, huge stage shows, look and learns and business classes filled the rooms of the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, leaving attendees feeling motivated to improve themselves and their careers.

On the stages, there were many highlights. The Top Salon Summit kicked off the classroom education, with 5 hours of speakers discussing business and technology, and paving the way for the industry to embrace the future. A must-see feature was the discussion of the Pilot Speech Translation device , which can be placed in someone’s ear to instantly translate 15 languages and 42 dialects – a life-saver in our eclectic and communication based industry.

On Sunday, business and creative education classes ran the agenda. The Australian Hairdressing Council presented Listening for a Change to again turn the focus on to the industry and how we can improve it, while Co-Lab presented an international contingent with Korean artists presenting Avant Garde looks. Bridal creations from Lorna Evans, Matrix’s inspiring Playtime show and a Day In The Life with the stellar (and award winning) Joey Scandizzo and Uva salons inspired creatively across the spectrum.

Nick Irwin

In business on Sunday, Tabatha Coffey conducted one on one and group sessions throughout the day to improve salons in a direct and intimate environment, while Julie Piantadosi hosted a class and an in-depth workshop focused on balancing life and business. Kylie Lewis took a social media course specially centred on harnessing Instagram for your business, Cherie Stokic educated on the all-important retail factor and Faye Murray inspired and educated on achieving salon success.

The big names made their mark as well. International headliner Angelo Seminara inspired in an off-site all-day workshop, with his bold imprinting and stencilling techniques, and his trademark bold approach to cut, colour and texture changing students’ perspectives on hair entirely. Candy Shaw, AKA the Balay Lama, presented to a full room and demonstrated her incomparable balayage and blonde techniques. Sharon Blain facilitated an afternoon workshop that gave students step by step instructions in creating detailed long hair looks with a multitude of enticing techniques.

Angelo Seminara

Monday was another huge day of expo education, and tired attendees were still there at 10am after a night pf partying (and another night of celebration to come) to learn new skills. Artistic education was again front and centre, kicked off by TONI&GUY and their chic, directional Futurewise show, and built upon by presenters such as Pulp Riot, who showed off bold and creative colour, and the fashion-focused Inception by muk’s Nick Irwin. Angelo Seminara again proved an event must-see as he took the audience through his incredible techniques and a more personal Q and A on the big stage.

Pulp Riot on stage

Men’s hair was a major facet of the Sunday agenda, with a full day’s worth of barbering education taking place in one dedicated room. Hero classes included presentations from the WAHL Education and Artistic Team, Kings Domain, who presented on their ultra-cool, modern barbering style, Menspire’s creative class and Mikey Denton’s look into barbering trends in his own North America. Educator of the Year Jules Tognini and his lil’ off the top gang presented a characteristically playful, humorous, interactive and creative class for a packed room.

Creative workshops were in no short supply and Candy Shaw brought hairdressers into her bright balayage bubble for the entire day, teaching in-depth hair painting techniques in an intimate fashion. TONI&GUY spent the afternoon teaching a hands-on workshop, while Menspire had the whole morning for ‘Discovery of Disconnection.’

Candy Shaw workshop

In business on Monday Julie Piantadosi, Bernadette Beswick, Lisa Conway, Megan Yasbley and Kylie Lewis ruled the agenda, teaching about passion in your business, solo operation, social media tips and tricks, salon training, communication, trichology and so much more between them. A hero class was one of the final seminars, the free and very necessary Safe Hands seminar, which put together a panel to discuss the hairdresser’s role in dealing with domestic violence being experienced by their clients. The panel discussed the three Rs – recognise, respond and refer, when it comes to helping the clients who may be experiencing this trauma.

It was a diverse and important agenda, filled with inspiring techniques, relevant business tips, men’s hair specialty classes and original and necessary classes that fall outside of these sectors, in a myriad of different environments. Students could filter between classes to grasp something from every angle of the hairdressing industry. We’ll be rushing to every class again next year – it’s well worth it.

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