UPDATE 5.19.14: Out of 1100 entries to the American Crew All-Star Challenge, a men’s styling and photo shoot competition, only 14 stylists were chosen to compete for the global title. They came to Lisbon, Portugal for two days of photo shoots with American Crew founder and photographer, David Raccuglia to realize their vision. Jerome Kantner of Germany was crowned the All-Star Global Champion on April 28, 2014.
The final photo that was created in Lisbon is the first displayed here while the second photo was the winning country entry and the image that secured the stylists a place in the global challenge. Brief interviews were conducted at the photo studio.
Meet Canada's Country Winner and competitor, Jacob Rozenberg:
He was the very first to pick a model and the very first to start styling. Alone in the room with his model, Jacob said he felt the nerves start to creep in. “I felt like I had never done this before.” But once he started removing weight from the hair and the shape began to appear, it was clear he knew what he was doing.
“I really wanted to showcase my skills, to have a nice tapered fade because that is very classic and very current, and on the top I wanted to throw product in it and put some life into it,” Jacob said. “My model’s face shape was ideal so I could have a bit more graduation on the sides. You see the beautiful graduated side, you see the jawbone.”
He looked to American stars Justin Timberlake and Gordon Joseph Levitt for inspiration. “They are playing with their style. They are not over the top, full on couture, but they are current and masculine.”
Jacob entered his first hair competition at 16 and finds it helps keep skills sharp and stylists inspired. “I like change and if you do the same things for too long you get bored. My heart lies in the art which is competition. I continually challenge myself because you have to shoot for the stars. You can’t learn how to win if you don’t risk losing."
I started styling my sister’s hair at the age of seven, cutting and coloring hair for friends at summer camp, and I executed my first wedding hair style at the age of 12. I started professional training at hair school at the age of 16, after which I was placed at the Lounge Hair Studio in Vancouver where I worked for nine years. During that time, I started entering hair competitions and found a passion for them – I spent all my spare time planning photo shoots, preparing for live contests, and won many that I entered! Everything changed for me in 2012 when I attended a professional academy in London; I was influenced by European styles and began pushing myself more creatively.
In June 2013 I joined the team at Moods Hair Salon in Vancouver, Canada, where I’ve gained more respect for editorial styling and continue to refine my skills.
A monthly facial is a must-have to keep my skin in great condition. I also love the Light Hold Texture Lotion and Forming Cream from American Crew.
FAVORITE MALE CELEBRITY HAIRSTYLE:
Of current celebrities – Justin Timberlake, Joseph Gordon Levitt and David Beckham. John F. Kennedy Jr. and James Dean are my favorite classic hairstyles.
AMERICAN CREW & MEN’S GROOMING:
American Crew has absolutely influenced the way I view men’s grooming – with the company’s imagery and the tutorials, I started to look at the head shape the American Crew way. All my men’s cuts have become taller and leaner, and my clients are noticing the difference in good way. As a hair stylist who works in a salon, and not a barbershop, I think it’s important to make sure your male clientele is comfortable. I like how American Crew is designed for men, giving them quality products to maintain the image they want.
WHAT DOES THE AMERICAN CREW ALL-STAR CHALLENGE MEAN TO YOU?
I love hair, and hair competitions. When I heard of the All-Star Challenge, I knew I had to enter. Winning the American Crew All-Star Canadian National Challenge is my biggest professional accomplishment so far, and the All-Star Challenge is an opportunity to show the world the best up-and-coming men’s stylists.
YOUR REACTION TO WINNING YOUR COUNTRY’S HONORS:
#unbelievable #grateful #elated
Products Used: Anti-Dandruff + Sebum Control Shampoo, Daily Conditioner, Firm Hold Gel
Technique: Matt's hair was prepared using American Crew Anti-Hair Loss + Thickening Shampoo and Daily Conditioner. Working from temples to center back, diagonal back sections were taken through the Parietal bone region and held at 90 degrees. The sides were then blow-dried. Scissor-over-comb techniques were used starting with a wide-toothed comb, then a regular comb and refined with a tapering barber comb, to create a fade from the perimeter into the sides. The top was created using a horizontal section. A center parting was taken and cut from shorter in the crown to longer in the front. Following sections were then over-directed by one section to create a square shape on top. Finishing - American Crew Light Holding Styling Gel was applied to Matt's hair and then blow-dried with a vent brush to create direction. A quarter size of American Crew Forming Cream was then used to define and finish the look. Inspiration: I stumbled upon a Ralph Lauren ad while flipping through GQ and was inspired by how these men could look so stylish, yet so classic and sophisticated. The ad had an overwhelming sense of sharpness, masculinity and luxury. I envisioned a clean cut, well-put together man. A man who attended an Ivy League School and vacationed in the Hamptons, but would not blend into a crowd. He could be any where in the world and get attention due to the fine tailoring and grooming of his hair. I wanted to create a look that encompassed all of that, yet still allowed for personal expression.
Why: I live and breathe hair. I always have. At 7 years old, I was styling hair in my basement and moved on to start work in a salon at the age of 16. In the past 9 years, I have worked my way up to the top of my field in Vancouver. I believe you never stop learning, especially when it comes to this industry. The moment you think you know it all is the moment it's time to expand your boundaries and step out of your comfort zone. It's about recognizing and understanding trends, but also how to visualize and create your own. That is exactly what i did when deciding to enter the American Crew All Star Challenge. Moving away form women's hair and mastering the craft of mens barbering.
One Word to Describe Your Look: Tailored Stylist