Afterpay Australian Fashion Week is back in a big way with many a mind bending hair and beauty moment already made both backstage and on the streets.

From Bianca Spender’s perfectly polished opening show to the merry-go-round of glamour on display at Romance was Born, we’ve gathered together our top moments from AAFW 2o22 Day 1!


The 2022 Australian Afterpay Fashion Week opening show was this year hosted by Bianca Spender who energised the industrial setting with a vibrant orange catwalk and team of contemporary dancers.

The resort collection felt like a mature departure from season’s past; panels of luxurious silk skimming and twisting around the various body types of the modern casting we’ve come to expect. Motivated by the concept of disruptive beauty, the fabrications, palette and boning together conveyed an equilibrium of contrasts – a spirit of liberated precision and fluid expression.

Hair Direction was led by Christopher Hunter for Goldwell and saw two, distinct looks created in addition to the natural textures presented.

“I had been thinking about the idea of disruptive beauty and pushing the notion of what is seen as beautiful. The collection delves into themes of individuality and self-expression, and we wanted to extend this to the beauty look to embrace the uniqueness of women,” says Spender.

Returning to the fashion week circuit following a 4-year hiatus, Christopher ensured an epic return with looks hinging on strong foundation techniques and a perfect balance of art and wearability. Look 1 was defined by a timeless blow-dry, while look 2 naturally pulled the hair back into a low, twisted bun.

“The chic, smooth and fluid blow-dry of look 1 moves beautifully when the models walk, offering a natural and feminine aesthetic to the look. The pulled back low twist bun has been raked back on the head allowing for natural texture and movement, and an air of elegance and complexity,” says Christopher.

Goldwell Stylesign Ultra Volume Power Whip proved hero on the day, allowing the team the prep and handle required for various hair types to style and hold in place, all with a softness to the finish.

“Our other hero has been the Goldwell Stylesign Just Smooth Diamond Gloss which we’ve been using on the ends of the blow-dry look for a slight sheen and added contrast between the styles.”

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The brief for Bondi Born this season? Effortless cool girl style that has an air of ease and undone polish.

“We added a lot of texture in this season,” Hair Director Renya Xydis explains from backstage. “It’s texture that sort of is there but not there… However, it took a long time to get it there! We want to see the texture, but we don’t want to see the texture.”

“We also included a lot of plaiting, but brought back in a way so beautifully, that it just looks like the girl just did it effortlessly.”

And as for products used to create these cool girl looks? “For Bondi Born we were using Wella Professional’s Glam Mist, Ocean Spritz and Hairspray, but our hero product was really Wella’s Insta Recharge powders. Using these, we’ve gone in and really coloured the scalp of each girl to achieve that seamless, smooth look.”

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Occasionally, you’re treated to a show throughout the many incredible moments that is truly an experience rather than a traditional catwalk. Such was the case at INJURY, a digital fashion show coupled with an immersive performance and some truly showstopping looks crafted by Hair Director Richard Kavanagh and the Redken team.

“This is an incredible creative collaboration that incorporates digital into fashion,” says Richard of INJURY’s unique concept. “The general thread of the characters imagines a world that’s in some parts 90s Australiana acid rave mixed with Harajuku’s Decora style. Using a smiley face motif to reference 90’s rave culture, I’ve made a whole lot of hair masks and wigs to cover the dancer’s faces and to reference this weird world which is just basically a deep dive into creativity.”

“The hero product for INJURY was definitely Redken’s Forceful 23, which is our strong hold hairspray. I’ve used that as a moulding lotion to make all of these masks out of here. You’ll also see that one of the girls has just got this huge alien beehive, so again Forceful 23 was key in that as well to give it some guts and make achieving it easy.”

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There’s truly nothing like a Romance Was Born show. With each look a simmering melting pot of art and fashion, it was particularly fitting that this show travelled offsite to take place at the Ken Done gallery.

The explosively colourful looks storming down this particular catwalk were perfectly paired with three wet looks crafted by Hair Director’s Dee Parker Attwood and Jason Fassbender using Schwarzkopf Professional products and ghd tools.

“The hair direction for Romance was Born show consists of three different wet looks,” says Dee. “Hair is meant to look super shiny and wet looking. Each style was completely thought through to suit each model and garment”

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Australian darlings Bec + Bridge took over the last show instalment on Day 1, confirming that, yes, the low-rise pant is indeed making a comeback with 90s grunge vibes seen and felt from music to prints, beauty and design.

Editorial genius and friend of THE JOURNAL, Diane Gorgievski was leading the charge backstage for Redken, bringing back the blow-dry and a seriously hot wet look.

“Think elevated rock chick. Tonight, we’re really pushing to manifest the iconic Bec + Bridge girl while bringing the brand’s last 21 years to the runway,” starts Di.

“It’s inspired by euphoria and that new age glamour, so we’re bringing back the blow-dry; a sweaty lived-in texture with a dry sheen on the ends and lived-in oils at the roots, without second look a really sexy, exaggerated wet look.”

“The blow dry is something we haven’t seen in this setting for so many years and it has been great to be part of its return to the runway. The sweaty roots are our point of difference here, and we’re relying heavily on Redken Shine Flash for this epic piecey-ness and the illusion that our girl has been out all night.”

Requiring time and technique, the blow-dry is a less efficient addition to backstage, however it’s a challenge Di was ready and armed for with one of the best Redken team’s to date (think 4 people on blow-dries at once).

“The blow-dry is a chance for us to really stretch out the texture and put deconstruction back-in using Redken oils. I really thrive on putting that effort into the prep so you see the hair move and bounce when the girls hit the runway.”

The hero of fashion grit, Redken Guts was of course the only choice for Di’s second, wet look.

“Grit is great as it’s basically like a mousse … so the hair looks wet, but it’s not! Once prepped, we give the hair a light spritz of water to get that dripping feeling without saturating all-over again.”

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