Take a Peek Backstage at August's Cover Shoot

Earlier this year, hairstylists from around the world submitted entries for consideration in Sebastian Professional's 6th annual What's Next Awards.The group of finalists—who were selected out of 1,600 entries from seven countries—competed live in Los Angeles for a chance at winning major prizes ranging from products, cash, education, an all-inclusive experience assisting at New York Fashion Week, and an editorial shoot with American Salon

Jonathan James, Keisha Mines and Rachel Alvord, who took home the Affiliated Artist, Professional and Student prizes, respectively, worked closely with Sebastian Professional International Top Artist Omar Antonio to craft a series of looks for American Salon's August cover feature. Using shape as inspiration, the trio created a variety of fashion-forward looks, ranging from strategically-placed triangle angles in the hair to square silhouettes and rounder designs. 

Multiple moving parts went into making the each of the looks possible, including Sebastian Professional products like Twisted Curl Shampoo and Conditioner, Mousse Forte, Twisted Curl Lifter Foam and Shine Define Hairspray, along with a talented team of mentors, and a skilled makeup artist and nail technician. For their part, makeup artist Eric Allen (@ericjallen) offset the dramatic hair and took it to the next level with beautiful makeup while OPI nail technician and brand educator Galdina Jimenez (@nailuscious) played up the total look with dark nails embellished with light geometrical designs.

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“The What’s Next Awards is the first competition that inspired me to put myself out there, and after four years of entering, it all paid off by being the best learning experience I could have asked for," says James, who created the hair for this month’s cover model. "The chance to shoot with American Salon was a dream come true. The entire experience has been amazing.”