The inaugural Mane Stage event did not disappoint with over 20 of the best landing in Melbourne for one, epic day of education. The event hosted some of our favourite brands, people and products plus a 350-strong audience, and marked the kick off M DIVISION’s first official AHFA Weekend. It was an overload of ideas and inspiration, and touched on the lived-in and beautiful to the straight up whacky.

Of course, we were on hand backstage to question the inner workings driving each marvellous creation. This is what our 2021 artists had to say …


Fresh off a flight from the United States, Joico Global Artistic Director Richard Mannah was on hand to officially kick things off and keep the energy high across the entire day as our MANE STAGE MC. Ever the artist, however, Richard did treat the crowds gathered to two looks in his opening show.

Explains Richard, “The styling for MANE STAGE was very goth chic. The first haircut I did was a wolf cut, with shorter layers growing out. The model had really beautiful purple, silvery blue hair. My presentation model had more of a stronger, graduated haircut with a little more softness around the front.”


Now this is one Motel we want to check out. Led by Lauren McCowan and Jack Morton, the FAME Team transported us to a whole new world of incredible hair & beauty looks.

“We presented 10 models that are all going to be really otherworldly-looking,” says Lauren McCowan of the FAME Team Session. “This was built from their FAME Team collection, which was called Motel and was based around 50’s Americana. We’ve elevated this concept and moved into a retro yet futuristic kind of vibe.  Think 50s and 60s but sci-fi. We’ve ruined the planet, so what are the aliens going to look like when they hopefully come to save us?”


For the Eleven Australia Session, Joey Scandizzo and Hermiz took to the MANE STAGE for a session that was equal parts educational and entertaining. The pair bounced off each other, creating beautiful tips and tricks for their looks that were easily achievable in salon.

“We focused on recreating some of the beautiful work that we do in the salon, and kept it quite natural and flowing,” says one half of the dynamic duo, Joey Scandizzo. “One of them was the 90s blowout, so just using some volume and creating body in the hair. The other look was creating bends and movement in the hair. We wanted to create some easy techniques that you know the people here watching can hopefully go back to the salon and try out for themselves.”


A yet to be crowned AHFA 2022 Hairdresser of the Year, Renya Xydis lifted the lid on her Nostalgic story; essentially walking guests through the creative process and inner workings of a winning image collection. Using Dyson’s hero heat stylers, three looks were brought to life with a series of prep work performed behind the scenes to allow a raw editorial vibe to evolve on stage.

“Dyson tools are fundamental in achieving the heavy prep work in minimal time required for a show like this, the heat stylers have been essential in bringing this collection to life.”


As always, the energy was buzzing between LPPD crew members – an elite cast from L’Oréal Professionnel, Redken and Matrix, jamming together across an extended set sounded to their very own DJ. The vibes were strong indeed.

Sam James, Matrix

“I’m essentially creating an illusion working with a 3D vertical part line and excess height. It’s a more avant garde look and will transform on stage from something edgy and sleek, to a more light-hearted, 60s style. Colour techniques include root smudge and balayage with coral peach and sunset pink hues applicable to both a salon and street context.”

Kobi Bokshish, Matrix 

Today ‘m re-creating an archive look from 2015. The mullet has been enjoying a resurgence yet again, and this takes the fundamentals and pushes them into an artistic space with a combination of classic barbering, fashion and some old school techniques.”

“I’ll be transforming the look on stage with the addition of extensions to show how to add volume quickly and easily. The colour was performed by me and leans into colour melting techniques with neon orange and yellow tones.”

Matt Johnson, Matrix 

“Working with a Marie Antoinette silhouette, this look is all about bigger and better – taller, wider, wilder. I’m going to introduce fishnet tights, apply over the hair and ruche texture through before placing pre-done finger wave pieces underneath the net for added drama. Product heroes today include Matrix Amplify Hairspray, Texture Builder and High Riser Texture Powder.”

Adam Ciaccia, Matrix 

 “My focus is on colour today, and essentially cutting a shape that activates it. There is nothing pre-done about my look … everything will be performed onstage, including the colour work. We’re starting with a level 1 base, and I’ll be adding strong, deep violet tones with splashes of orange. The length will be taken off and the focus will be on framing the face and layering in texture to release the modern colour scheme throughout.”

Ash Croker, L’Orèal Professionnel

“Today I’ll be showcasing my favourite, signature balayage technique, essentially reiterating how easy and transformative this style of colour can be. What you can see now is the result of a full colour correction (brown to copper), and I’ve applied an INOA ammonia free fashion toner for an apricot edge. These pieces I’m building in will be painted onstage to demonstrate the technical aspect, before they’re removed to unveil the final look, as she’s leaving the salon.”

Dani Solier, L’Orèal Professionnel

My focus is colour and today I’ll be sharing an editorial shadowing technique that I’ve been weaving through our collections over the past few years. It’s been a work in progress with each application an opportunity to refine and evolve for something that feels really different. The process is a combination of techniques involving weft colouring, smudging and shape work, and can be taken and manipulated further to suit the story or style of our guests’ next collection or fashion client.”

Jamie Furlan, L’Orèal Professionnel

“I will also be sharing an editorial look that has been in the process of refinement. It was a standout of our 2021 JOURNAL shoot with L’Oréal Professionnel, and one of my strongest looks in previous collections. The look builds from a multi-textured technique whereby the hair is prepped, set, and set again, before being unleashed into its full, voluminous effect. Of course, this is all about layering a cocktail of products including L’Oréal Professionnel Volume Lift Mousse, Full Volume and Infinium hairspray.”

Peter Thomsen, L’Orèal Professionnel

For me, I’m all about creating beautiful, shiny, commercial hair but most importantly, I’m about the principle of less is more. The colour I’m working towards today is driven by high impact results and minimal sectioning … as an industry, we show a tendency to over colour, so I want to educate on the benefits of pulling back, finding balance, and creating something suitable to the client in front of you.”

Justin Pace, Redken

“Today I’ve gone ‘uptown New York old Justin Pace’ and introduced a bit more of a grunge vibe. It’s about reviving old techniques with an undertone of aggressive darkness, so it’s not quite so beautiful anymore. The moodiness will show through textured black panels for a more imperfect feeling relevant to the modern beauty ideal.”

Rachel Busby, Redken 

I’m all about versatile transformations, so today I’m demonstrating a technique called the butterfly effect, essentially showing how small change can make a dramatic difference, later. An extension of the theme, our styling will take on a victory roll-esque shape and manifest ideas of emerging from a cocoon of change. The colour scheme will work largely with pastels and showcase how, particularly as blondes, we can really transform a person’s hair without significant commitment to a full colour change.”


“My show today is essentially a continuation of Unplugged, London and I’m bringing in a look from Hedonism, the collection that won International Hairdresser of the Year. The looks are moving on from their prior selves and further into a place that really celebrates shape and a fusion of textures. I always like to work closely with the fashion stylist to create a total look for maximum impact and the texture we’re creating here really compliments the clothes … we’re plaiting and putting European hair with Afro hair and however unlikely, it works beautifully.”


Becc Snow

“My presentation is a true representation of my style/aesthetic as a hairdresser as well as the clientele who define me. I’m showcasing innovative but realistic looks across a diverse range of hair types, lengths and textures, essentially speaking to the modern ideal of self-expression. It’s so important that we, as hairdressers, have the confidence and skillset to deliver hair design that makes guests feel comfortable and seen, so today, I’m working to help make that a reality for our audience.”

“The techniques are simple but strong staples and are being brought to life with Original Mineral’s Clean COR Colour. O&M is a super universal range and I love that I got to show my fellow hairdressers that bright, bold and creative colour is possible with a clean, low-tox and cruelty free colour range.”

Grace Kelly

“Today I’m showcasing “the warm blonde” and “the copper gal” using the full, Original Mineral colour range – from lightning to permanents, and demi/semi pure pigment toner treatments. My objective is to inspire people to have fun with blondes and shine a light on the unsung hero of this colour category. warm blondes! The resulting look will feel wearable yet modern with a good dose of volume and texture courtesy of  W Spray and Queenie Hairspray.