Estetica Magazine was in attendance at the Kao Salon Global Experience in Chicago, where over 2,000 professionals from around the world gathered to celebrate creativity and excellence in the industry.
The eagerly anticipated Kao Salon Global Experience 2023, presented by Kao Salon Division, is an industry flagship event that marked a remarkable showcase of innovation, inspiration, and creativity. This dynamic two-day program brought together hairstylists from across the globe for an unforgettable experience in the vibrant city of Chicago on September 24 and 25, 2023. Estetica Magazine and international attendees were treated to extraordinary presentations, an exciting live competition, and captivating artist performances, all highlighting the latest trends, techniques, and products that define the Kao Salon family.
“At Kao Salon, creativity isn’t just a buzzword – it’s our DNA,” says Dominic Pratt, President, Kao Salon Division. “Our commitment to innovation, imagination and integrity drives us every day, and Kao Salon Global Experience is the epitome of this ethos. We use this time to celebrate not only our exceptional products but, more importantly, the remarkable individuals who make up our Kao Salon family.“
More than just an event, Kao Salon Global Experience serves as a celebration of creativity, a testament to innovation, and a gathering of like-minded individuals who are passionate about pushing the boundaries of the beauty and hair industry. It was also the 75th anniversary celebration of Kao Salon’s stylist-centric brand Goldwell, marking the culmination of decades of industry-breaking innovation, leading-edge technology, relentless research and development and deep relationships between Goldwell and its stylists.
Some of the many highlights of the event include the Global Creative Awards evening with the announcement of the new winners, the premiere of the new “Hair Every Wear 3.0” collection of Global Goldwell Ambassador Angelo Seminara, as well as the “Eras of Anarchy” collection of the Rush Artistic Team, which is inspired by and paying homage to the exemplars of British fashion. Also Mario Krankl‘s show was a hymn to creativity. Angelo Seminara shares his excitement for the event: “Kao Salon Global Experience is such a unique event. I loved sharing my vision and passion with like-minded professionals and it is amazing to see the special connection between the artists that work in this industry. The Global Creative Awards Evening is the greatest evening event of its kind worldwide!”
BEST OF EDUCATION & INSPIRATION
Throughout the event, the world’s most creative artistic teams took the stage to share cutting-edge trends and techniques, featuring the remarkable products of the Kao Salon Division. The best educators and artists were among them live on stage: Lok Chan & Salome de Wet as well as Zachary Jarid & Ethan King, Daniel Bruns & Sage Kinney, and for Kerasilk Steven Picciano & Krysten Ashley Garrod.
Five inspiring Artist Sessions gave guests from all over the world the opportunity to experience excellent mastery of their craftsmanship: Ici Jolie (Netherlands) is a group of passionate hair stylists who specialize in innovative color and cutting techniques; Evolve (Singapore) is an award-winning salon based in Singapore, well-known in the fashion and hairdressing industries; Hare & Bone (United Kingdom) was founded on individuality, self-expression, openness and creativity; The Creatives of North America (United States) feature a fusion of established National and International Artists from Canada and the United States; Kien Hoang (United States) continues to work behind-the-scenes at Fashion Week internationally, styling the runways of brands including Balenciaga, Armani, and Moschino.
GLOBAL CREATIVE AWARDS EVENING
The Global Creative Awards evening started with an amazing show and impressive presentations. Stylists and Salon Owners from all over the world were excited to discover the newest collections from Angelo Seminara, Mario Krankl and RUSH. The announcement of the Global Creative Awards winners in the Technical and Editorial Categories was one of the most outstanding moments of the evening. And the winners are:
New Talent Colorist of the Year:
• GOLD: Samantha Dixon, Canada
• SILVER: Winnie Wong, Singapore
• BRONZE: Frank Wong, Hong Kong
Creative Colorist of the Year:
• GOLD: Cheng Jian Yang, China
• SILVER: Alo Lo, Hong Kong
• BRONZE: Tina Casciato, Canada
Creative Hair Cutter of the Year:
• GOLD: Desiré van den Ende, Benelux
• SILVER: Sabrina Grossenbacher, Switzerland
• BRONZE: Marilyn Vendittelli, Canada
Men’s Hairstylist of the Year:
• GOLD: Marilyn Vendittelli, Canada
• SILVER: Christian Ríos, Spain
• BRONZE: Laurens van Essen, Netherlands
Avant Garde Stylist of the Year:
• GOLD: Amanda Magistro, Australia
• SILVER: Zoe O’Day, United States
• BRONZE: Tom Yek Teng siong, Malaysia
Salon Team of the Year:
• GOLD: Industry Hair & Esthetics, Canada
• SILVER: Salon Cyan, Canada
• BRONZE: Renaissance Salon & Estetica, Canada
Editorial Colorist of the Year:
• GOLD: Stevan Dulay, United Kingdom
• SILVER: Caroline Brand, United Kingdom
• BRONZE: Stacey Smoker, United States
LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY RECOGNITION
Sustainability played an important role at the event with an experience area including innovative and sustainable packaging ideas, tips to reduce the carbon footprint and an interactive quiz. The highlight was the recognition of salons from three regions for their leadership in salon sustainability:
• Representing Europe, the recognition for “Leader in Salon Sustainability” goes to: Unisex Friseure
• Representing America, the recognition for “Leader in Salon Sustainability” goes to: Fringe, A Boutique Salon
• Representing Asia, the recognition for “Leader in Salon Sustainability” goes to: Roots – Where Hair Begins
REIMAGINING THE FUTURE OF KAO SALON GLOBAL EXPERIENCE
After its first regional gathering for community and inspiration twenty years ago in Europe, the event evolved over the next two decades from Trend Zoom into Color Zoom, then Global Zoom, and into Kao Salon Global Experience it is today: A clear demonstration of commitment to supporting the professional community at all levels – from younger talents to seasoned professionals.
The hairdressing industry has never been sitting still, but the scale with which this industry has changed in the past few years has been unprecedented. To reflect this change and to make this unique educational opportunity available to even more stylists, it is time for the next evolution of the event: Kao Salon Division will pause the live event in 2024 to reimagine the experience with the full creative input of their professional community and will relaunch in 2025 with a live program designed for a new generation of salon professionals – transforming into a new, modern and sustainable experience.
“Kao Salon Global Experience is one of the most important ways we demonstrate our commitment to supporting the professional community,” says Dominic Pratt, President, Kao Salon Division. “For this reason, we are taking a year to transform the event and make it available to all existing and potential Kao Salon Division customers in a meaningful way, elevating the hairdressing industry and salon businesses worldwide. We are here to support, educate and inspire as one global Kao Salon Division family!”
THE 2024 GLOBAL CREATIVE AWARDS ARE STILL ON!
The Global Creative Awards will continue in 2024 and Kao Salon Division will not miss to offer this creative platform and a great exposure for existing and emerging talents. The competition will be fierce and fully virtual in 2024, with more competitors, more global representation, and more creativity than ever.