WHAT: Since 2009, Sebastian Professional has been conducting the “What’s Next Awards” competition to give stylists in North America a creative outlet that delivers national coverage and peer attention. The competition was so successful that in 2011 it became the global “What’s Next Challenge,” inviting stylists and beauty junkies—non-stylist artists who are hair obsessed— from all over the world to participate.
WHEN AND WHERE: Winners were introduced April 15 in Berlin during a special competition, celebration and Nightshade Masquerade Ball attended by hundreds of stylists, contest finalists and judges. Judges included Sebastian Global Artistic Directors Shay Dempsey, Michael Polsinelli and Ed Moelands, along with Sebastian Professional Visionary and accessory designer, Kerin Rose.
WHO: Stylist Zheng Fei from Shanghai, China, was named the 2012 What’s Next Challenge winner for his “Stardust” style after he and nine other finalists recreated their hair looks on stage for the Sebastian Professional judging panel. Entries were originally submitted online as photo images based on a theme of Cosmic Infinities, inspired by a futuristic Sebastian collection fueled by Potion 9 and Potion 9 Lite.
NEXT: For the 2012/13 cycle, the Sebastian What’s Next Awards will return to its roots as an exclusively North American competition. The competition is slated to be part of a major Sebastian education, inspiration and advocacy tour across the continent starting this fall, and will likely wrap with a live event in Los Angeles in Spring 2013. The winner will earn a chance to style backstage at New York Fashion Week with the Sebastian Design Team.