These days, reality competition shows are all over the airwaves. From singers to dancers, chefs to models, rock stars to treasure hunters, it seems that nearly everyone is vying to be the next best something. And now, hairstylists will get their day in the spotlight when the women-targeted network, Oxygen, debuts Tease, a competition series that's all about the hair biz—our biz. Our clients may never view us in quite the same way again.
Debuting this month and hosted by Lisa Rinna, formerly an ABC Dancing With the Stars contestant, Tease is a cross between Shampoo and Iron Chef. The show will feature six, hour-long episodes starring two up-and-coming stylists chosen from hair salons throughout the country. They'll compete against one another in what the Oxygen folks describe as an "outrageous, Olympics-style" tournament, with challenges that will vary from show to show. One episode might focus on special-occasion hairstyles, while another might center on effortless 'dos or how capable the artists are of taking hair from long to short. And I'm pretty certain that one segment will involve designing extraordinary, avant-garde coifs.
Kim Vo on the set of Tease
A panel of judges including Robert Verdi (E! Entertainment Television/Style Network's Fashion Police), Los Angeles salon-owner Peter Ishkhans and booking agent Frank Moore will be on hand to put everything in perspective. The winner they select will earn the chance for a one-on-one battle with one of three high-profile stylists or colorists, one of whom is yours truly.
Each final face-off determines whether or not we pros can maintain our top-dog distinctions or if we'll be knocked down by yet-unknown talents from "Hometown, USA." If we're beaten, the winner receives an honor called the "Silver Scissors." If we win, I think we get to shave the little hotshot's head (just kidding). Although the striving stylists will be up against a huge amount of stress and pressure, the competition will also be healthy—and maybe even productive. I get the feeling that we're experiencing a bit of a lull in our industry, and this show just might shake things up. It would be great to bring back a sense of excitement about hair—reclaiming the fun and artistry that our profession is all about.
Tease has the potential to reignite exhilaration and passion, making a positive impact on both stylists and clients alike. I'm delighted to be a part of it and hope you enjoy the expanded exposure the show will give our profession. It's an opportunity for us to make our mark in a new way, and I feel really good about that. Please keep an eye out for the premiere this month and let's watch it together.