By Shayna Wiwierski
Hunt, an elite award-winning stylist at Chatters Salon and Beauty Supply on Empress, is a two-time regional winner of the Redken Cover Competition, where seven semi-finalists from across Canada are invited to Toronto’s Redken Exchange to compete in a $10,000 fashion photo shoot competition with mentors from the fashion industry. The grand prize? Style the cover of Canadian Hairdresser magazine for the December/January 2013 issue, a trip for two to New York City to attend training at Redken’s Exchange on 5th, and a photo shoot with Flare magazine. In addition, the winner will be named as Redken Session’s Hairstylist of the Year.
Hunt travelled to Toronto in 2011 to compete in the challenge and she recently returned from Canada’s version of the Big Apple this summer after being a regional winner once again for the 2012 contest. The $10,000 photo shoot included working with high-profile stylists and artists including fashion photographer John Van der Schilden, who recently shot the July cover of Elle Canada with Carrie Underwood; Rimmel London makeup artist Vanessa Jarman, who has worked on Lady Gaga and Adam Lambert; fashion guru stylist Jeremie Cote of Pascal & Jeremie Concepts; and Redken Global performing artist and freelance session stylist Brent Borreson.
“The team that they put together for you is amazing,” says Hunt, who has been a hairstylist since 1997. “You feel like you’re a celebrity stylist. They really spoil you and let you have your vision and work with you. Jeremie had $40,000 worth of jewelry to try on. They wanted an edgy photo for the cover so they really delivered.”
In addition to being a two-time regional winner for the Cover Competition, Hunt was also the 2011 Chatters Redken Makeover Challenge Stylist Choice Award winner, where over 450 hairstylists from Chatters Canada voted for their favourite before and after shot. The prize consisted of a personalized trophy, $1,000 in styling tools from Chatters Canada, a $300 Redken Education gift certificate, and media exposure.
“It was overwhelming; people were coming up to me to take photos. My client had never even coloured her hair before so I asked her if she wanted to be a hair model.”
Recently, Hunt was announced as the winner of the 2012 Fashion Week Stylist contest, where she will be working backstage as part of the Redken Stylist Team at the upcoming 2012 Toronto Fashion Week in October.
“I had to come up with a look that I thought be suitable for fashion week,” says Hunt, who will be travelling to Toronto in the fall on an all-expenses paid trip. “I’m not sure if they are going to use my look; they are going to present it to the designers and they will decide.”
Although she didn’t really get into competitions until recently, her persistence and sheer talent has paid off. Hunt’s advice for hairstylists who want to start competing? Just go for it.
“Just capture the moment. It’s amazing what comes out of you and it’s okay if everything doesn’t follow as exactly as planned. Just go with the flow. Trust your vision and don’t be scared. Throw your work out there; I wish I would have done this in the beginning of my career.”