Canadian Hairstylist of the Year Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if I’m eligible?
The competition is open to every bona fide, working member of a Canadian* professional beauty salon, including freelancers to the industry and salon owners. Elite Master, International Hairstylist and Master Colourist is by nomination only. Students/apprentices who enter do not need to be licensed, but they can only enter the Canadian Salon Team and Student/Apprentice Hairstylist categories if they submit a letter from their school or salon confirming enrollment.
*With the exception of the International category.
Can I enter multiple categories? If so, can I enter different photos from the same photo shoot?
You may enter as many categories as you wish, but some categories require an exclusive collection. This means, that for those categories, the collection must have a different look and feel from your other collections.
Work submitted in the following categories cannot be shared with other categories (exceptions in brackets):
1. Canadian Hairstylist
2. Elite Master Hairstylist
3. International Hairstylist
4. Master Colourist
5. Session Hairstylist
6. Canadian Salon Team (with the exception of Canadian Nail Artist, Canadian Colourist and Makeup Artist)
Can the images I enter be published previously elsewhere?
Photos cannot be previously published before entering them in the Contessa awards, with the exception of: Session Stylist of the Year (previously published editorial, consumer or otherwise, allowed), Elite Master (previously published editorial work allowed), International Hairstylist (previously published editorial work is permitted) and Canadian Nail Artist (previously published editorial work allowed).
How are entries judged?
Judging is performed by independent professional beauty industry experts and beauty editors. Shown by number and category only, each entrant’s work remains anonymous. Judges score each entry on a point system relating to originality, creativity, fashion appeal, model suitability, technical execution, photography, makeup, wardrobe and overall concept. Scrutineers will review entries to ensure individual compliance with the rules and regulations, including excessive photoshopping of hair.
How much photoshopping is allowed?
The spirit and intent of this competition is to showcase the work of hairstylists, artists and technicians. Major photographic or digital manipulation of the hair is discouraged (except for Avant Garde and Session). Based on the judging panel’s opinion, submissions that appear to have extreme digital manipulation will receive demerit points and in extreme cases, may be disqualified.
What do you mean by an ‘unretouched’ photo in the rules?
When submitting your photos, when it states that we require a ‘pre-photoshop’ or ‘unretouched photo’ with your entry. This is a final image that you want to submit for your collection but that is NOT digitally enhanced in any way. You will still also submit your final images, which have been photoshopped and which will be used in the judging process.
The working photo is not a photo of you working on the style. The unretouched photo is also not the same as the ‘Before’ image (which is required for some categories).