Salon International made a triumphant return to ExCeL London from 16-18 October, with three days of inspirational hair, engaging education and plenty of product purchased, networking and celebration to mark the British hairdressing industry getting back to its best after an unparalleled 18 months.
Brands were at the heart of the show, with a host of leading manufacturers coming together to share their latest innovations and product insight.
From ground-breaking styling tools powered by the latest in cutting-edge technology to everyday salon essentials, the show provided hairdressers with the perfect opportunity to stock up, and to learn more about the newest market launches that will help drive business forward, fuel festive retail and get clients excited about returning to the salon.
The best hairdressers never stop learning, which is why education is always a focus for the Salon International weekend.
As well as insight from brand ambassadors and educators on their stands, the show was also packed full of free stages with carefully-curated schedules of diverse guest artists.
Across the HJ, Modern Barber and Colour Stages, free shows covered everything from time-saving, money-making colour techniques to avant-garde artistry created to inspire.
The Fellowship for British Hairdressing stage also included a packed schedule of leading industry names, as well as the exciting live finals for the F.A.M.E. Team 2022.
For those serious about education, the Salon International Seminars provided the opportunity to go deeper, with in-depth, intimate sessions from Mahogany, Patrick Cameron, Sassoon Academy and TONI&GUY.
These up-close-and-personal look and learn classes gave hairdressers the opportunity to indulge in the latest techniques across cut, colour and styling, and left guests empowered with new ideas for both creative and commercial work.
After the battering that the industry endured with lockdowns over the last year, the Business Live sessions were another must-attend for salon owners over the weekend.
Packed full of relevant, practical ideas and advice, the expert panels covered topics including sustainability, mental health, inclusivity and the shifting freelance model, as well as insight on launching a brand, recruitment and managing and maintaining a motivated team.
Competitions also made a return to the show floor at Salon International for 2021, with the Barber Clash and HJ’s Extensions Competition both providing up-and-coming talent with the opportunity to showcase their skills in front of a live audience.
HJ’s Extensions Competition 2021, sponsored by Remi Cachet, had categories for both commercial and creative work, with the winners named as:
- Classical Look: Alex Ferris
- Creative Look: Sianna Munday
- Overall Winner: Joanne Fox
Barber Clash 2021, presented by Modern Barber Magazine, Salon International and Mike Taylor Education, also awarded barbers and men’s hairdressers across four categories:
- UK’s Freshest Fade: Connor Mcleod
- Artistic Barber of the Year: Kimberley Fletcher
- Beard and Moustache Champion: Mathew Maxwell
- Afro Barber of the Year: Graham Grimshaw
Salon International also provided attendees with the opportunity to view and be inspired by the finalist and nominee collections for HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards, sponsored by Schwarzkopf Professional.
A highlight of the show every year, the 2021 gallery of work proved beyond all doubt that British hairdressing is back to its best with outstanding creativity on display across all categories.
Watch this space for the winners in November!
“It was incredible to be back at ExCeL for hairdressing’s biggest weekend. […] We are so proud of everyone involved in Salon International – from the stage teams to the brands – for coming together and providing such a fantastic show. From really practical business advice to inspirational hair looks, this year’s event was full of ideas to help salons and hairdressers across the country not just get back to their best, but to thrive both creatively and commercially. We’re thrilled to have been able to reunite everyone under one roof, and we can’t wait to welcome everyone back next year for a show that’s even bigger and better.”
HJ’s Executive Director, Jayne Lewis-Orr