Australia & New Zealand’s Best Hairdresser For 2023 Has Been Crowned

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The Australia-New Zealand champion in the L’Oreal Professionel Style & Colour Trophy has been declared. Rebecca Brent, who serves as the owner and director of Willis York in Wellington, NZ, was crowned this year’s regional champ.

Brent nabbed the trophy after presenting an electric pink ‘do inspired by the hairstyles in Japanese manga. 

“I went down the rabbit hole looking at metaverse and backdrops and then settled on coral and pinks,” Rebecca told marie claire Australia.

“How I researched the metaverse theme [of the L’Oreal Colour Trophy], I asked my clients and friends if you were to create an avatar in the metaverse what would you do? Most people said fantasy colour or style. Then I took the concept and exaggerated it. I wanted to create a being that was a bit punk, a bit princess, and tried to blend it into one little unicorn.”

Rebecca Brent’s L’Oreal Colour Trophy winning look. (Credit: Supplied)

Now in its 67th year, the Colour Trophy, which recognises the best of the best in hair styling and colouring, is the longest-running hair competition in the world. 

Rebecca will now go on to compete at the global grand finale in November, 2023.

Off the back of her regional win, we sat down with Rebecca for some sage advice on hair styling and trends in 2023.

Go Bold

There’s no playing it safe in the near future, with Rebecca observing that people are becoming “really brave” when it comes to their hair.

“We have been through a pandemic people are finally realising they have one shot and want to be seen,” she shares. “They will get bolder with fashion and hair colour. Same thing will come through with hair and makeup.”

2nd place winner: Alicia Peruzza, Circles Of Hair (Western Australia) (Credit: Supplied)

Embrace Your Natural Assets

Changing your look can be daunting, and there’s no shame if you’ve found a style that you love. However, if you’re wanting to try something a bit new—but not go crazy—Rebecca says there are ways to take baby steps. Perhaps the key is in the right hair product to emphasise your natural texture or style. 

“You can use different products to change up your look,” she says. “[For example] Embracing your natural curl or smoothness, and using products to elevate each of these looks, or even changing your parting, can make a huge difference.”

Change With The Seasons

“Colour is the easiest way to transform your style,” Rebecca says.

And if you need help picking the right hue or shade, Rebecca finds it can be as simple as moving with the seasons as your guide.

“Change with the seasons. In the wintertime, look at it as ‘hair repair time’ and warm up your tones. Then in summer, you can embrace the brightness.”

3rd place winner: Chanel Beck, Koko Blaq (Western Australia) (Credit: Supplied)

‘Age Appropriate’ Haircuts Are Out

“There is nothing more ageing then an an ‘age appropriate’ haircut,” Rebecca says.

She encourages everyone to stretch their hair boundaries a little.

“If you trust your stylist together you can create something magical. Collaborate with your hair stylist. Ask their opinion, even something like a fringe can totally change your look,” she adds.

“Don’t be afraid to change. It’s only hair.”

L’Oreal Colour Trophy 2023 winner, Rebecca Brent. (Credit: Supplied)

Marie claire Australia hosted this year’s L’Oreal Colour Trophy, and congratulates all the entrants and winners for the year. 

L’Oreal Professionel Style & Colour Trophy ANZ Winners 2023

  • First place: Rebecca Brent, Willis York (New Zealand)
  • Second place: Alicia Peruzza, Circles Of Hair (Western Australia)
  • Third place: Chanel Beck, Koko Blaq (Western Australia)
  • National Audience Winner: Fiona Fazzalari, Hair Machine Glenelg (South Australia)
  • Newcomer Award Winner: Chanel Beck, Koko Blaq (Western Australia)
  • iNoa Award Winner: Kate Clark, Ink For Hair (Queensland)

L’Oreal Professionel Style & Colour Trophy ANZ People’s Choice Winners

  • Mathia Te Moananui, Buoy Salon & Spa (New Zealand)
  • Chanel Beck, Koko Blaq (Western Australia)
  • Kate Clark, Ink For Hair (Queensland)
  • Prue Taylor, Lady And The Hair (Victoria)
  • Crystal Wood, Wood & Wills (New South Wales)
  • Fiona Fazzalari, Hair Machine Glenelg (South Australia)

Read more about the L’Oreal Professional Colour Trophy here.

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