The biggest accolade in UK hairdressing was bestowed on the 25th of November on Robert Eaton from Leeds as he was announced British Hairdresser of the Year 2019 at HJ’s renowned British Hairdressing Awards, sponsored by Schwarzkopf Professional. 

Showing his prowess as an incredible all-rounder, Robert was also inducted into the British Hairdressing Awards Hall of Fame to mark his trio of colour wins. His hat trick of colour successes came in the Schwarzkopf Professional Colour Technician of the Year category in consecutive years 2018, 2017 and 2016. This is Robert’s second ticket to the elite Hall of Fame group, after gaining entry over a decade ago after becoming a three-time winner of North Eastern Hairdresser of the Year in 2007, 2003, 2002.

The newly crowned British Hairdresser of the Year star from Russell Eaton Hair beat off competition from a star-studded line up of eight of the country’s best-known hairdressers. He triumphed in the prestigious awards, dubbed the ‘Oscars’ of the hair world, gaining top spot in the most fiercely contended and revered category of the evening. 

Robert, who works in the Leeds salon on Boar Lane, claimed his status as the best hairdresser in Britain after his phenomenal original hair work demonstrated not only technical skill, but also creative vision and comprehension of current trends.

Going through vigorous judging before being rewarded for his skill, Robert was required to submit a collection of eight images and this photographic work was judged twice by a panel of hairdressing legends, leading national beauty press, and Hall of Fame members (those who have won the same British Hairdressing Awards category on three occasions). 

Robert received the coveted title at the Grosvenor House, a J W Marriott Hotel in London in front of a 1,750 strong audience of hairdressing peers, influencers and press. Celebrity host for the evening was TV personality Rylan Clark-Neal, who was joined by Hairdressers Journal International’s Executive Director, Jayne Lewis-Orr and Schwarzkopf Professional’s General Manager Julian Crane. After the dazzling ceremony guests were treated to a performance by The Hoosiers with their hits Goodbye Mr A and Something About Ray.

Now in their 34th year, HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards celebrate the people producing the very best hairdressing work across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Robert’s prize was one of 18 trophy wins on the night in a line-up of ten regional and eight specialist awards, including two new categories of International Collection of the Year and Trend Image of the Year.

Commenting on the win, Jayne Lewis-Orr, Executive Director of HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards said; “I am thrilled at Robert’s recognition as the best in our business. He was up against industry legends, with years of experience behind them, but Robert’s styling work is beautiful and brings a great deal of vibrancy to the table. It’s full of joy and life, and really made us stop and take notice. He has had an impeccable career so far and consistently produces an exceptional calibre of hairdressing. 

“British hairdressing is known the world over, and Robert continues to show that excellence and creativity are still at the heart of UK styling. Warmest congratulations to him for demonstrating fantastic technical dexterity, and for being such a great ambassador for our industry.”

Delighted with the win, Robert said: “I’m absolutely speechless! There are so many people here who have mentored me, helped me and guided me to where I am now. I’m so thankful to everyone who voted for my collection! I was overwhelmed to be nominated in the first place, so to win this year is absolutely mind-blowing. 

“When I first started in the hairdressing industry, my dad gave me a Trevor Sorbie book, and he said, ‘One day this could be you winning these hairdressing awards,’ and now I’ve done it! 

“I’m madly passionate about the hairdressing industry, I love every single element about it. It’s been my whole life since I left school and I hope I can be a mentor to other young hairdressers too. I would love to thank my Wella Professionals family and most of all, the amazing salon teams at Russell Eaton in Barnsley and Leeds!”

“Sponsoring HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards is an enormous privilege,” says Julian Crane, Schwarzkopf Professional General Manager UK and Ireland. “We are delighted to join with Hairdressers Journal International to recognise the very best in UK hair talent. Hairdressing is an industry of endless creativity and the breadth of ideas in this year’s awards was outstanding. I am absolutely delighted for Robert and he should be so proud of how he represents the pinnacle of skill in our industry.”

The British Hairdressing Awards have launched the careers of a host of household names: from John Frieda and Nicky Clarke, to TV stylists Lisa Shepherd and Andrew Barton.

The British Hairdressing Awards took place on 25th November 2019 at the Grosvenor House, a J W Marriott Hotel, Park Lane, London. 

The hairdressers nominated for British Hairdresser of the Year 2019 were: 

Darren Ambrose: Previous British Hairdresser of the Year winner 2015, a leader within session styling and hairdressing

Sally Brooks: British Hairdresser of the Year for two years in a row, Sally is making her title work for hairdressing with her industry film, ‘The journey to my destination’ which has reached educators and students across the UK

Errol Douglas MBE: Honoured by Her Majesty the Queen for services to hairdressing, multiple award winner and hairdressing superstar 

Robert Eaton: One of the most current and renowned colourists of the moment

Gary Hooker & Michael Young: Hairdressing’s most famous duo, stage-stars, creative inspiration and talented educators 

Adam Reed: Session stylist and salon owner, a colourful, skilful character bridging consumer and hairdressing worlds

Cos Sakkas: Second time nominee, an artistic talent and a legend within Toni & Guy 

Angelo Seminara: Four times winner and one of the most captivating and original hair stylists of our time 

Eugene Souleiman: No words other than Eugene is a session stylist extraordinaire

Specialist Category Winners 2019

  • British Hairdresser of the Year: Robert Eaton, Russell Eaton, Leeds
  • Afro Hairdresser of the Year: Rick Roberts, Rick Roberts, Beverley (East Yorkshire)
  • Artistic Team of the Year: Mark Leeson Artistic Team, Mansfield
  • Avant Garde Hairdresser of the Year: Hayley Bishop & Sophie Springett, TONI&GUY North Audley Street, London
  • Men’s Hairdresser of the Year: Jim Shaw & Daisy Carter, Essensuals, Billericay
  • Newcomer of the Year: Alex Morton, Jamie Stevens, London
  • Schwarzkopf Professional British Colour 

Technician of the Year: Sophie Gibson & Jonathan Turner, Hooker & Young, Newcastle

  • Trend Image of the Year (new): Federico Patelli, TONI&GUY Victoria, London

Regional Winners 2019

  • Eastern Hairdresser of the Year: Nathan Jasztal & Zoe Jasztal, Silhouette Du Barry, Chelmsford
  • London Hairdresser of the Year: Andy Heasman, RUSH Victoria, London
  • Midlands Hairdresser of the Year: James Earnshaw, Bad Apple Hair, Wolverhampton
  • North Eastern Hairdresser of the Year: Alexander Turnbull, Alexander Hair & Beauty, Hull
  • North Western Hairdresser of the Year: Jon Wilsdon, TONI&GUY Deansgate, Manchester
  • Northern Ireland Hairdresser of the Year: Sharon Malcolm, Sharon Malcolm Hairdressing, Co. Down
  • Scottish Hairdresser of the Year: Jason Hall, Jason Hall Hairdressing, Edinburgh
  • Southern Hairdresser of the Year: Andrew Smith, Andrew Smith Salons, Portsmouth
  • Wales & South West Hairdresser of the Year: Martin Crean, MODE, Chipping Camden, Gloucestershire
  • International Collection of the Year (new): Jacky Chan, Oscar Oscar Chadstone, Melbourne, Australia

Hall of Fame 2019: Winning the same category three times

North Western Hairdresser of the Year: Marcello Moccia, Room97 Creative Hairdressing, Wakefield

Afro Hairdresser of the Year: Michelle Thompson, Wolverhampton 

Schwarzkopf Professional British Colour Technician of the Year: Robert Eaton, Russell Eaton Hair, Leeds

About HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards, sponsored by Schwarzkopf Professional

For 34 years, the British Hairdressing Awards have been the most coveted and sought-after titles in the hairdressing industry resulting in global recognition. Both regional and category specific awards are given to salons and hairdressers across the UK who show incredible skill, vision and talent through a collection of images. Winners were announced at a celebrity hosted ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel, a J W Marriott Hotel in London’s prestigious Park Lane.

For more information about the winners, please contact Tamara Thompson at LWPR, tamara@lwpr.biz, 01858 419 668.