News Snippet: Hairstylists Compete Head-to-Head

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News Snippet: Hairstylists Compete Head-to-Head

When it comes to creative hairstyles, black and straight is not what Korean hair designers have in mind - their latest ideas include an array of shapes and colors. The most creative and trendy hairdressing handiwork was honored during the recent L'Oreal 2001 Color Trophy event at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts.

With an origin dating back 45 years to the first contest in London, the French company now holds annual competitions in 25 countries for up-and-coming hair designers.

Korea, which introduced the event last year, is the third Asian country to institute it, after Japan and Thailand. The hairstyling contests, each of which singles out one top designer and four runners-up, provides a platform for stylists to gain international renown.

This year some 200 hair design teams entered the competition, each consisting of a model, a stylist and makeup artists. Seventeen advanced to the final round.

The black-tie affair, with all the glamour and flash of any big awards ceremony, attracted more than 2,500 people, including celebrities, industry professionals and the press.

The awards ceremony was preceded by five dance performances, each choreographed by a different designer: Hyuntae, Jean Pierre, Park Sea-nae, Oh Min and Lee So-young. Each dance had a theme derived from a famous movie: "Cotton Club," "Dancing Hero," "Grease," "Velvet Goldmine" and "Moulin Rouge." The sponsors chose the actress Lee Seung-yeon to represent the 2001 Color Trophy Muse, a tacit nod to Lee as the country's trendiest looking star.

The top prize, called the "Muse Color Trophy," went to the designer Cho So-hyeon, representing Hairdo, a salon in the Gyeonggi province city of Osan.

In her winning performance, titled "Deep Autumn," Cho, 27, demonstrated a skillful "three-dimensional" cutting technique, which emphasizes the volume and contours of the particular hair cut. She also mixed in a lot of colors, ranging from auburn to purple to khaki. The overall effect was refreshingly youthful, active and vibrant.

The four runners-up were Kang Cho-rok, Cho Seong-eh, Deny and Lee Haeng-jin. Their works featured bold color contrasts and radical cuts, aptly reflecting the contemporary-urban-youth look. Their colors of choice were violet, red and khaki.

Thinking of changing your hair color? If you want to follow the lead of the most prominent stylists, think purple - but be ready for black to come back.



by Inēs Cho

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