Expert Advice

Wella's Student Competition at America's Beauty Show 2013

Lauren Salapatek | April 22, 2013 | 12:38 PM
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MODERN’s Maggie Mulhern emceed the event.
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All-stars panel with audience member.
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Wella Professionals Student Competition Gold Winners
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Wella Professionals Student Competition
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Team I.C.A.N. live presentation on stage.
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The winners are announced!
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Team I.C.A.N. live presentation on stage.
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THE EVENT: The 3rd Annual Wella Student Competition at America’s Beauty Show 2013 at McCormick Place West in downtown Chicago.

THE DETAILS: Industry icons featuring Wella Creative Ambassadors Christopher and Sonya Dove, Wella Global Education Academy Dean Stephen Moody, International Artistic Director of Keratin Complex Martino Cartier and Founder and CEO of’s Julie Mahloch opened the show with an all-stars educational panel. Panel members shared valuable advice to audience members on how to find success in a beauty career through hard work and motivation. The Q & A session transitioned into hair platform demonstrations by Team I.C.A.N., followed by a discussion panel, and closing the event, the Wella Student Competition. MODERN’s Alison Shipley and Maggie Mulhern emceed during the event.


In the Q&A, The Doves touched on their professional journeys in beauty, while Moody touched on Hairdressers at Heart Scholarships. Mahloch spoke about the importance of social media while Cartier spoke about salon hiring.

Members of the audience asked thought provoking questions like, “How can you keep your energy level up and stay enthused as an educator?” Mooney responded, “As an educator you are like a battery, you have life, you have charge, and you keep giving all day long. And that battery is eventually going to lose power, and eventually needs to be recharged. Today there’s no better way to do that than online and at trade shows.” Cartier responded, “You have to re-invent yourself and your classroom all the time. As a platform artist and motivational speaker I can’t tell the same story every single class. You have to tweak it and twist it. Think up different educational techniques, change your protocol, keep it fresh.”

When asked about competition work, panel members replied: “Always remember to have a great model from head to toe. Competition work is really another way of getting yourself out there—it can be as simple as just entering or writing about it,” says Sonya Dove. “If you are promoting yourself as a competitor in a competition, you have to talk about it from beginning to end. You have to raise your game, prepare for it, train for it, and get ready for that game day,” says Mahloch.


After the panel, Team I.C.A.N. made an unforgettable entrance, each doing platform work. When asked about sources of inspiration, the members mentioned texture, shapes, architecture, and art. “I always want to do something with a lot of movement, texture and shape—whether it’s a triangle, rectangle, square and you just put it all together,” says Brenton Lee of West Covina, California. “A hair cut and color have to have fluidity. My inspiration comes from music, geometrics and always sketching when an idea pops into my head—remember to always write it down!” says Kathryn Hornick of Minneapolis.


Twenty-four cosmetology student finalists competed for the places of gold, silver and bronze. “We are so proud of these incredible students who share Wella’s passion for our profession,” says Fabio Sementilli, Wella creative and technical director. “Wella is committed to supporting stylists throughout every stage of their career. This competition shines the spotlight on student stylists who create beauty and defy convention. This community of young, driven and talented stylists is our next generation of professionals.”

THE WINNERS: Winners in the Wella Professionals Category: (Gold) Ashley Thom, Bellus Academy, Poway, CA; (Silver) Jasper Struthers, Bellus Academy, Manhattan, KS; (Bronze) Alicia Harley, Marinello School of Beauty, Moreno Valley, CA. Winners in the Sebastian Professional Category (Gold): Michelle Ross, Regency Beauty Institute, Phoenix, AZ; (Silver) Sabrina Vann, Bellus Academy, Poway, CA; (Bronze) Mackenzie Secrist, Avalon School of Cosmetology, Phoenix, AZ. Winners in the Clairol Professional Category: (Gold) Daniela Navarrete, Avalon School of Cosmetology, Phoenix, AZ; (Silver) Amanda Scott, Avalon School of Cosmetology, Phoenix­, AZ; (Bronze) Hilaria Estrada, Avalon School of Cosmetology, Phoenix, AZ. Instructor of the Year: Casey Ramos, Marinello School of Beauty.

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