Sebastian Professional is a brand that provides an indescribable platform for stylists of all level to pursue their talent and styling dreams at the annual What’s Next Awards. This event challenges students and professionals who dare to take their creativity to the stage in order to reach the next level in their careers.
Finalists competed LIVE in Miami, having met their models less than 24 hours prior, and for the first time with a LIVE webcast directly from the palm tree city!
Each year Sebastian Professional releases a hair collection that inspires contestant’s hair style entries. This year the collection was Metamorphik, a collection that was inspired by nature at its most creative, and represents unexpected extremes, consisting of two powerful but opposing raw elements, volcanic ash and carnauba wax. Metamorphik ignites the power of self-expression allowing artist to change the state of hair and unlock new possibilities for artistry.
“The What’s Next Awards is a great reflection of the phenomenal talent that lives within the salon professional industry,” said Christina McCarver, Education Manager for Sebastian Professional. “The competition allows new and established artists to showcase their ability to create innovative, fearless looks that inspire stylists around the country. We congratulate the winners of this year’s competition as they continue to push their own boundaries to create What’s Next.”
But when the time came to decide on the winners, the judges had to make the most difficult decision, concluding the brand’s endeavor which amassed a total of over 900 applicants this year alone! With breaking news, ESTETICA invites you to meet the winners below.
STUDENT CATEGORY WINNER
Safiya Aboaen // HL Cuts Above, Niagara Falls, ON
She entered the What’s Next Awards competition with her ‘Broken Ballerina.’
“This look was one side is sleek and tamed just like the Metamorphik Collection. What’s next for her is unknown.”
She won the gran prize of $1000 cash, a photoshoot with top trade magazine, and a stylist starter kit valued at over $1,000!
PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY WINNER
Stella Damaris Earlewine // Liberty Salon, Palm Springs, CA
She entered the What’s Next Awards competition with her entry ‘Magnetic Flux.’ Damaris drew her inspiration from the look ‘Shift’ featured in the Metamorphik Collection.
“Magnetic Flux is about drawing you in with a subdued force waiting to unravel—a look of effortless elegance.”
She won $1000 cash prize, a photoshoot with top trade magazine, and an all-inclusive trip to New York to assist backstage at NY Fashion Week!
AFFILIATED ARTIST CATEGORY WINNER
John-Paul Colombo // HairAfter, Aurora, ON
He entered the What’s Next Awards competition with his entry ‘Vinyl Vixen.’
“I was inspired by Metamorphik and the raw elements of Eruptek and Resintek. I wanted to create a balance of texture and shine. I changed the texture of the model hair from within using Eruptrek which gave me an explosion of volume. To finish the look, I used Resintek to create a vinyl-like shine on the surface.”
This Affiliated Artist took home $1000 cash prize, a photoshoot with top trade magazine, and an all-inclusive creative day of mentorship with top Sebastian artist in LA!
The competition took place in front of a live audience of more than 400 and a judging panel comprised of industry leaders, tastemakers and educators with the final word on which three stylists of the nine finalists took home the grand prize in each category and included:
- Michael Polsinelli – Global Artistic Director for Sebastian Professional
Shay Dempsey – Global Artistic Director for Sebastian Professional
Maggie Mulhern – Beauty and Fashion Editor for Modern Salon
Oliver Shortall – 2015 WNA Professional Category Winner
Sebastian’s Professional Team were in charge of presenting their skills with on stage presentation including Diva Poulos, Omar Antonio, Anthony Cole, Marylle Koken and Daniel DiTommaso.
If you missed the broadcast, don’t worry! ESTETICA was there the whole night to collect images of the beautiful Sebastian Professional’s night! Check out the gallery below!
By Alejandra Acuña