19 July 2024

HairCon’s Debut: Celebrating the Art and Business of Hairdressing

The inaugural HairCon event, held at the iconic O2 Victoria Warehouse in Manchester, successfully captivated more than 4,000 attendees with its dynamic blend of Main Stage performances, creative workshops, and live demonstrations.

From the intensive social media and business sessions to the hands-on experiences offered by HairCon prominent Headline and Collaborator Partners, the event was a comprehensive showcase of industry innovation and artistry. Estetica Magazine was on-site to capture every thrilling moment, ensuring that our readers wouldn’t miss a beat of this landmark event. The Main Stage was ablaze with creativity, featuring legendary stylist Trevor Sorbie MBE, who marked his return to live hairdressing on stage after seven years.

The stage also hosted the UK’s first Noise show outside London, presented by Saco’s Richard Ashforth and X-presion’s Jorge Cáncer, and other spectacular shows like “A Modern Fairytale” by Jack & The Wolfe, sponsored by Yuv®, and Stacey Wright‘s heartfelt tribute to Manchester, “24HR ART’EH PEOPLE”, sponsored by Wahl. James Earnshaw and Grace Dalgleish wowed us with colour shows and the Fellowship Project teams reassured us that the future of creative UK hairdressing is in phenomenal hands.

Caryn Franklin MBE brought a modern twist to the HairCon Style Challenges, sponsored by the Fellowship for British Hairdressing, pitting favorite artists against each other in a stylish fray. The event was also a celebration of industry luminaries like Errol Douglas MBE, Nicky Clarke OBE, Andrew Barton, Billi Currie, Desmond Murray, Jacqui McIntosh, Ashleigh Hodges, Sally Brooks and Mark Hayes, who led an unbelievable Sassoon show celebrating their 70th anniversary.

And the barbers were out in force – Josh Lamonaca and Sean Moore celebrated 10 years of Menspire; Alan Beak hosted the Main Stage as well as creating cool cuts. Dean Gleeson and Cal Newsome enjoyed a Style Challenge duel whilst Rob Wood created amazing transformations with Novo Cobelo. Richie Finney, Johnny BaBa, James Parr, Jay Foster, JJ Savani, Lucy Muyanga and the legend that is Simon Shaw hosted, shared business insights and technical skills with inspired and engaged visitors.

The festival was not just a gathering but a grand celebration of UK creative artistry and entrepreneurship. HairCon partners, including Great Lengths with their GLammies and Vagaro with the UK debut of Iconic.24, brought their annual awards to the show, adding to the event’s prestige. Plus, HairCon welcomed to the festival the Little Princess Trust and Haircuts for Homeless.

HairCon show director, Jane Galpin said, “We have been overwhelmed by the fantastic feedback from our amazing artists, brand partners and the visitors. Our social engagement is blowing up with fabulous, positive comments and we’ve had re-bookings and new bookings for next year already. Having Trevor on stage and moving the Fellowship for British Hairdressing’s Presidents Night out of London for the first time, were both true moments in time which none of us will forget. A huge big thank you to everyone who made our first, of many, HairCon such a successful and pioneering festival.”

All photographs by Mauro Carraro / All videos by Sergi Bancells

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