Celebrity stylist and balayage guru Candy Shaw, also known as ‘The Balay Lama,’ brought home the gold from Cosmoprof’s Beauty Pitch, the Shark Tank of the Professional Beauty Association. A crowd favorite, Shaw’s two-year-young company, Sunlights Balayage, the makers and purveyors of leading balayage products, including The Balay Box, captured the 1st prize in the Start Up Category, which is open to new businesses with reveunues not yet exceeding $5,000,000. Shaw and Sunlights received a $5,000 cash prize from The Kirschner Group, a leading manufactuer’s rep organization. CEO Harlan Kirschner was on hand to present the award.
Six final contestants, who were narrowed from an impressive field of applicants, competed live on stage before an audience of more than 1,000 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center for this opening event of Cosmoprof North America and PBA Beauty Week. Two of the judges were from the hit American reality TV show ‘Shark Tank’ where entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to wealthy investors. Celebrity judge John Paul DeJoria, co-founder of both Paul Mitchell Systems and Patron Tequila, along with Kevin Harrington, the inventor of the Infomercial and the owner of the ‘As Seen on TV’ brand, judged the competition along with Elle & InStyle fashion editors and Cosmoprof’s president. In addition to the ‘Sharks’, more than a dozen ‘Angel Investors’ and Venture Capital firms sponsored the event honoring beauty industry entrepreneurs and benefiting several charities.
Codner and Shaw accept the prize from Harlan Kirschner (center), CEO of The Kirschner Group.
Shaw told the audience that her company’s goal was to “change the world, not once but twice!” First, Shaw intends to “double hairdresser productivity worldwide to help hairdressers earn a better living and live a better life. Since The Balay Box enables hairdressers to see 2-3 times the number of guests in a day, it allows hairdressers to double or even triple their incomes.”
Quoting DeJoria who says that ‘success not shared is failure,’ Shaw, who never attended college or beauty school, says, “The Balayage Revolution has been very good to me and so I have a responsibly to share her success with the world.”
Shaw’s second goal is to significantly decrease the environmental impact that hairdressing has on the planet. “Hairdressing has a dirty little secret,” she said “The tons of aluminum foil used each day to color hair is not recyclable and ends up in our landfills. The Balay Box completely eliminates the use of aluminum foil in highlighting making it a much greener, more sustainable practice.”
Shaw was accompanied by her son, Jamison Shaw Codner, 27, who’s named after his grandfather Jamison Shaw, a former world-champion competition hairdresser. Codner, representing the family businesses’ third generation, and oversees the operations of all three of the family’s companies: Jamison Shaw Hairdressers, a 5,000 sq. ft. (1,500 sq. meters), 50 chair salon in the U.S.; an Advanced Training Academy which teaches balayage highlighting & french cutting and the newest company, Sunlights Balayage. Codner shared Sunlight’s extraordinary success story with the audience including the fact the company did six times projections its first year and that it did well over seven figures its second. SUNLIGHTS is distributed by some of the world’s top indie distributors in 45 U.S. states and seven Canadian Province and in nearly a dozen countries covering five continents.
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