Meet Angie Hunt, the winner of the Next in Beauty talent search

Meet Angie Hunt, the winner of the Next in Beauty talent search

“I want everyone to feel welcome in my chair; I want them to feel like they can really trust me and my work,” says Angie Hunt. The Winnipeg-based hairstylist, who has been working in the industry for 27 years, has just been crowned Canada’s Top Hairstylist—by us! Earlier this year, we set out on a search, in partnership with TRESemmé, to find a one-of-a-kind Canadian hairstylist with a unique vision and talent for all things hair. “I like to think of myself as a wellrounded hairstylist but not a cookie cutter. I thrive on pushing boundaries and creative freedom,” Hunt wrote in her contest entry. 


Indeed, Hunt’s Instagram and TikTok pages (@angie_hunt_) are filled with creative editorial looks (think sky-high updos and multicoloured strands) as well as morewearable (but still stunning) bobs, blowouts and curls. “Sometimes, clients come in and say ‘I’m sorry; I just want a basic haircut,’” says Hunt. “But I’m grateful that they trust me with their hair either way. Of course, what gets me excited to jump out of bed in the morning are those edgy, creative styles. But the ‘basic haircuts’ are what pay my bills!” 


It should come as no surprise that Hunt can do it all, considering her hairstyling career kicked off in 1997 with a no-frills haircut. She enrolled in hairdressing courses at age 19. “I’d struggled in high school and didn’t really have a direction,” says Hunt. “One day, my mom said, ‘I won’t charge you rent if you go to school for something; I don’t care what.’ So I enrolled in a free hairdressing school.” But Hunt quickly noticed that clients were coming back and asking for her specifically. “I thought, ‘Well, I guess I could do this as a career.’” Hunt’s teacher recognized her talent and encouraged her to apply at a local salon. “My teacher said, ‘Go in and show them the haircut you just learned.’ It was literally just a straight-across, one-length cut and I had just learned it that day,” laughs Hunt. “But she hired me.”

Today, Hunt’s repertoire of styles has certainly expanded. Her own ’do is a hime (Japanese for “princess”) cut—a multi-length style that is said to have originated in Japan as early as the eighth century. Hunt’s version is often adorned with multicoloured stripes. “Other hairdressers who are more particular will be like, ‘You need to blend that!’ but I don’t. I’m OK with being different,’” explains Hunt. Her confidence has paid off: She has been a finalist in many national hairstyling competitions, been named Chatters’s Stylist of the Year, worked backstage at Toronto Fashion Week and been featured on Good Morning America’s social media pages. But her humility remains as strong as ever. It’s fuelled by a desire to keep bettering her skill set, including learning how to work with all hair types. “Years ago, I took a DevaCurl course and learned all about dry-cutting and styling curly hair,” she says. “I knew they were going to be doing a big hair show the following day, so I asked if I could volunteer. I just wanted to keep learning. Eventually, I got my certification in cutting curly hair. I’m so lucky to be able to collaborate with curly clients and work with them on their hair routine.”


Like most hairstylists, Hunt knows the power that hair holds, especially in building the confidence of clients. In fact, it’s one of the reasons she regularly volunteers at a Winnipeg-based shelter. “Recently, there was a girl at the shelter who had waited two hours to see me—because there’s always a long line for haircuts—and she sat in my chair and told me that the last time I’d cut her hair, it was for a temporary job she’d landed at the time, and now she had been hired full-time and wanted a cut before her first day. She said, ‘One of these days, I’m going to come see you for highlights.’ That was just so rewarding.”


Hunt’s passion and humility are certainly refreshing, but she insists that to be a good hairstylist, “you can’t have a big ego, because just when you think you’ve mastered something, it evolves. In hairdressing, because of how fast trends and techniques change, it’s almost like you’re always one step behind. Understanding that is how I stay motivated.”

CREATIVE DIRECTION: George Antonopoulos
PHOTOGRAPHY: Lawrence Cortez
STYLING: Ashley Galang MAKEUP: Veronica Chu HAIR: Angie Hunt NAILS: Nargis Khan for P1M Agency MODEL: Maya Chung for Next Models Canada

1 Founded in 1959, Second City popularized the art of long-form comedic improvisation, which thrives on a two-word ethos: “Yes, and…” Performers were encouraged to follow the lead of their fellow players, embracing the chaos as they wrote live comedy in real-time.