Over 250 guests attending the glamorous Industry Awards.

Barbers, beauty therapists, and hairdressers came from all over New Zealand gathered to celebrate hair and beauty success at the Cordis hotel in Auckland.

Each year HITO, Kitomba Salon Software, and the New Zealand Association of Registered Hairdressers (NZARH) come together to hold the awards and celebrate excellence in business and training in the New Zealand hair and beauty industries. The awards celebrate the HITO Next Generation Talent Awards and the Kitomba NZARH Business Awards.

From the back: Jared Kirk, Northern South Apprentice of the Year; Jordan Carlton, Southern Apprentice of the Year; Callum Senior, Northern Apprentice of the Year. From the front: Gracie Nisbet, Mid Central Apprentice of the Year; Machaela Robbins, Apprentice of the Year (Also won Midland Apprentice of the Year) and Jade Scott, Central Apprentice of the Year.

HITO CEO Kay Nelson said:

“These awards celebrate the apprentices who bring fresh ideas and talent, the trainers and employers who constantly renew their skills and help their trainees succeed, and the businesses and stylists who grow their communities, the economy, and New Zealand by striving for the highest level of service and professionalism. HITO’s very existence is based on nurturing skill and talent and helping our industries maintain a reputation of excellence, and we are honoured to be at the forefront of events such as this”.

Machaela Robbins was HITO’s big star of the night, winning HITO Apprentice of the Year Award. The Apprentice of the Year Award is one of the most prestigious awards that acknowledges the best apprentice in the country within the barbering, beauty therapy or hairdressing sectors. This is the first time a HITO beauty therapy apprentice has won HITO Apprentice of the Year.

“It is a huge honour to be the first beauty therapist to be represented at the Industry Awards with HITO and have the title as Apprentice of the Year. I can’t wait to take this and grow from it. I’m definitely motivated to push the other beauty apprentices back in the salon to apply next year!”

Machaela Robbins, 2017 Apprentice of the Year

Auckland’s Joseph Benfell also celebrated success on Sunday, taking home the Jasmine McBeth Memorial Scholarship.

The Jasmine Mcbeth Memorial Scholarship goes to a hairdressing apprentice who has shown dedication, passion and commitment to their hairdressing apprenticeship and in turn, their hairdressing career to come. The scholarship is named after Jasmine McBeth, an apprentice who completed her hairdressing apprenticeship despite struggling with cancer. When Jasmine passed away, her parents Denise and Murray McBeth donated the money Jasmine had saved to buy a hairdressing salon towards the scholarship. Every year, Jasmine remains in our hearts and we honour her legacy by passing on the scholarship to apprentices who live and breathe her strength.

“I am so humbled! Thank you so much to my team at Biba for helping me grow as a hairdresser and for pushing me to apply for this scholarship. Especially to my boss Belinda Robb for being so supportive. I also want to thank the McBeth family so much for creating this scholarship and I hope I can live up to Jasmine’s legacy.”

Joseph Benfell, recipient of the Jasmine McBeth Memorial Scholarship 2017

Christchurch Salon Head Rush was the other big winner of the night, taking the title of HITO Training Workplace of the Year Award.

“At Head Rush, we’re great believers in apprenticeships. The industry is hands-on, so it’s the best way to learn. In my own career as a salon trainer watching my apprentices and staff grow into amazing capable hairdressers reflects the image of our salons and makes my job a rewarding experience.”

Aniwa posing with Head Rush Hair Salon award for 2017 Training Workplace of the Year

Wellington salon Mane owner and director Janine Simons took the title of HITO Trainer of the Year at the awards. Janine’s dedication to training her staff really shone through in her application.

“I am super thrilled to win HITO Trainer of the Year! Continued education is important for our growth and success, it strengthens our industry, keeps our clients happy and our teams inspired. I am passionate about sharing and learning from other hairdressers and feel it is a privilege to contribute to the growth of hairstylists and apprentices.”

Kiri holding 2017 Trainer of the Year trophy on behalf of Janine Simons from Mane

Congratulations to the winners, and thank you to everyone that entered. You should all be proud of what you’ve achieved. Thank you also to our amazing judges Bex Brent of Willis York, Nadine Gratton of Zabetti, and Ruth Irwin of Oscar and Co, who had the extremely difficult task of selecting the winners.

Congratulations also to the Kitomba NZARH Business Award winners, particularly Buoy Salon and Spa who took home L’Oreal Grand Salon of the Year, Excellence in Marketing, Best New Entrant, and Kitomba NZARH Salon of the Year, with stylist Chinney Yeap also taking home Business Stylist of the Year.

Meet the winners

HITO Next Generation Talent Awards

HITO Apprentice of the Year

  • Winner: Machaela Robbins, Pamper Me, Thames

HITO Regional Apprentice of the Year

  • Northern: Callum Senior, Zurri Hairdressing, Auckland
  • Midland: Machaela Robbins, Pamper Me, Thames
  • Mid Central: Gracie Nisbet, MPhosis, Hawkes Bay
  • Central: Jade Scott, VIVO Tory St, Wellington
  • Northern South: Jared Kirk, Cuts @ Once, Nelson
  • Southern: Jordan Carlton, Head Rush, Christchurch

HITO Trainer of the Year

  • Winner: Janine Simons, Mane, Wellington

HITO Training Workplace of the Year

  • Winner: Head Rush, Christchurch

Jasmine McBeth Memorial Scholarship

  • Recipient: Joseph Benfell, Biba Salon, Auckland

Kitomba NZARH Business Awards

Kitomba NZARH New Zealand Salon of the Year: Buoy Salon & Spa, Wellington

Best New Entrant: Buoy Salon & Spa, Wellington

Comfortel Best Salon Design: ASC Salon, Auckland

Wella Sustainable Salon of the Year: The Powder Room, Wellington

Business Stylist of the Year: Buoy Salon & Spa – Chinney Yeap, Wellington.

Employer of Choice: La Villa Hairdressing and Extensions, Wellington

Excellence in Marketing: Buoy Salon & Spa, Wellington

Salon Business Couch Fastest Growing Salon: Ross and Co Hair Design, Hamilton

Boutique Salon of the Year: So You Hair, Wellington

L’Oreal Grand Salon of the Year: Buoy Salon & Spa, Wellington

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