Bay hairstylist wins big at masters challenge

2019-07-03 06:01
ABOVE: Jesse Gallant recently walked away with a R30 000 prize at the Sofn’free HairXperts Masters Challenge. LEFT: Jesse’s design.   Photos:REZE BONNA PHOTOGRAPHY

ABOVE: Jesse Gallant recently walked away with a R30 000 prize at the Sofn’free HairXperts Masters Challenge. LEFT: Jesse’s design. Photos:REZE BONNA PHOTOGRAPHY

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YOUNG Port Elizabeth hairstylist, Jesse Gallant, recently secured a coveted prize at the Sofn’free HairXperts Masters Challenge Finale at Monte Casino, walking away with R30 000 in prize money.

With the main theme of “HairVolution”, Gallant went above and beyond to produce a vibrant and colourful creation. Gallant, winner of the YoungXperts category at the prestigious competition, said that he realised hairstyling was his passion when, despite having a day job, he would cut hair as a hobby, offering his services to local community members after hours.

“My heart was always drawn to barbering which I did as a hobby while working. It was then that I knew my passion was driven by what I did in the time that most individuals would use to ‘relax’ after a working day,” said Gallant.

A student at the Images 1 Hair Academy, Gallant describes how, as a young boy, he would want his hair cut every Friday, like everyone else in his class but being raised by his mother alone, this was not always possible.

“Unfortunately, at the time my mom could not afford it. She eventually bought a hair clipper and told me that either she was going to cut my hair or I needed to do it myself. I would sit at the barber shop every week watching the barbers, and after two months, I plucked up the courage to start doing my own hair.

“Once I felt more comfortable, I started practising on my best friend’s hair,” Gallant said.

He explained that it was by the good graces of an established salon owner in his local community who recognised his talent, that he first gained valuable experience in the professional hairstyling industry.

After the win, Gallant said that he intends to show his mother appreciation for her support throughout his career by using a portion of his winnings for home improvements.

“I will also use a portion of the money and buy groceries to give back to the community that I was raised in,” Gallant said.

He said his passion for hairstyling and barbering far exceeded any boundaries experienced in his early life, and this ethos is perhaps the greatest testament to his perseverance and success.

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