A Cwmbran hairdressing apprentice collected the Rising Star Award at Wales’ premier event for hair and make-up talent.
Luke Hopkins, 20, became the second apprentice in a row from Guy Christian Salon, Cwmbran to win the coveted award at Salon Cymru organised by ISA Training, the largest independent hair and beauty training provider in Wales.
The Rising Star Award is presented annually by ISA Training’s chief executive Shirley Davis-Fox, MBE, to the apprentice that shows the most potential in competitions. Last year, Kirsty Harris from the same salon won the award.
Luke claimed third place in both the level two styling and barbering competitions. The foundation apprentice with ISA Training said: “I entered four competitions at Salon Cymru to gain experience and never thought I would win anything. It’s an honour to win the award. I have always been artistic and like being creative.”
It proved a good day for Guy Christian Salon as Kirsty came second in the styling competition and third in the colouring competition.
Inspired by modern icons and the world of high fashion, Salon Cymru competitions were open to all hairdressing and beauty apprentices, from levels one to three, from schools, colleges and training providers across Wales and the English border counties.
Past winners have seen their careers take off in many ways, from competing in international events to appearing on primetime TV. Around 500 spectators attended this year’s event where the compere was BBC Wales newsreader Lucy Owen.
Shirley Davis-Fox, ISA Training’s chief executive, said this year’s Salon Cymru had been one of the most successful ever held and she praised the high standard of work produced by the competitors.
She said: “The event was an outstanding success and we were delighted that so many people attended to support the competitors.”
Competition sponsors were the Welsh Government, Wella Professionals, The Andrew Price Group, City & Guilds, The Warehouse, Brynmawr, SPArticulate, Rathbone Cymru and Berry Smith Solicitors.