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Lance Breakwell from Wolverhampton has beaten hopefuls from across the UK to be crowned the nation’s top up-and-coming stylist.

The return of “Create the Look”, hosted by business insurance provider SME Insurance Services (SMEi), called on budding hair stylists, make-up artists, beauticians, and nail technicians. From across the UK to showcase their most inspired creations, highlighting the nation’s new emerging talent.

Lance Breakwell, 23, is a trainee make-up artist at the MAKUP Academy for Film and Media Make-up. She impressed the judges and received the most votes for his submissions, taking the “Create the Look” crown.

 I had never used eye shadow before or even attempted any beauty or contemporary looks. However, during the 16 weeks at the MAKUP Academy, studying under Veronica McAleer, I learned so many new skills that I’m continuing to develop.

“Explosions of colour inspired this look, twisted together with a dark sultry edge. I wanted to create a full work of art, from the hair and make-up to the dress, which I also created myself. So, I wanted to show being a make-up artist isn’t just about pretty eye shadows and highlight it’s an art form.”

Lance has aspirations of utilising his creative passion. On a daily basis and become a full-time make-up designer: “To be able to have the opportunity to do something I love has to be the ultimate dream, and I’m on the road to making that dream a reality!”

SMEi also announced two runners-up in the competition; Eric Joey Jones, 17, is a hairdressing student at Hugh Baird Liverpool College, from Southport. So, Along with make-up by fellow student Bethany Sanders; and Amber Coates, 18, a beauty therapy student at Suffolk One College, from Ipswich, were placed as second and third place respectively.

As well as studying full-time, Eric Jones is also an apprentice stylist at Artizan Hair Bar in Southport. Whilst, he is training to be a hair colour expert. Amber Coates also works part-time at Revolution Beauty Clinic in Ipswich, and trains in acrylic and gel extensions, gel manicures, and nail art.

Reflecting on his submitted look, Eric stated; “I love being a hairdresser, and my inspiration for my submitted look is very out there. I wanted my entry to be unusual and creative to show a different side of hairdressing and make-up.”

Amber commented; “I have really enjoyed creating this look. As a beauty therapist and nail technician. So, I use my artistic talents to fit each client’s needs. I can’t wait to continuously develop my skills for the future!”

  It included the most creative and inspiring hair and beauty entries. Three expert judges also chose their favourite look, comprising Jodie Withers, Editor of Good Salon Guide, Emily Hunter, Editor of Beauty Magazine, and Katherine Louise, makeup artist and blogger at

Commenting on the winner, judge Jodie Withers said:

“Lance has truly produced a show-stopping image – something that you could easily imagine in the windows of MAC Cosmetics. Avant-garde is not an easy style to create, but Lance has clearly shown a high level of creativity and artistic expression in his work. The colours used are beautiful and it allows the image to jump at you and grab your attention.”

Judge Emily Hunter stated: “The colours used in Lance’s entry are truly beautiful and work well together to create an outstanding entry. The hair and make-up complement each other beautifully and his technical ability is evident in his entry, which wouldn’t look out of place in the pages of an established magazine.”

Third judge Katherine Louise also added: “I’m a great believer in everyone wearing colour, especially in make-up. Lance’s entry uses a mixture of colour and dark to create some beautiful, dramatic make-up which could definitely be interpreted for daily wear.”

In addition to being crowned the UK’s best up-and-coming stylist. Lance Breakwell will receive a professional hair and beauty kit. Packed with an excellent range of the latest products and treatments. Eric Jones and Amber Coates will also each receive a luxury hamper. Packed full of the latest hair and beauty products and equipment.

The top 10 finalists, displayed in a gallery at, were as follows:

  1. Alexandra Fitzgerald, a make-up artist from Birmingham.
  2. Amber Coates, a beauty therapist from Ipswich.
  3. Eloise Hall, a fashion journalism student from London.
  4. Ellie Smith, a hair and beauty student from Leeds.
  5. Ellie Gunby, a hair and beauty student from Leeds.
  6. Emily Coe, a hairdressing apprentice from Halifax.
  7. Eric Joey Jones, a hairdressing student from Southport.
  8. Lance Breakwell, a trainee make-up artist from Wolverhampton.
  9. Ryan Sparrow, a hair stylist from Ipswich.
  10.  Tiffany Chapman, a make-up artist from Ipswich.

Jonathan Webber, Commercial Director of SME Insurance, stated. “We were blown away by the quality of entries received from up-and-coming hair stylists, make-up artists, and beauticians from across the UK. Each of the finalists has exceptional talent. So, Lance, Eric and Amber are very passionate about their profession in the industry.

“For the second year running, the Create the Look competition has once again helped. It shines a spotlight on the creative talent that is emerging within the UK’s hair and beauty sector. So, this unique opportunity provided the perfect platform for the finalists to demonstrate their passion and skills to a wider audience. So, we hope this accolade will provide the boost, Lance, Eric and Amber need for a successful career in this creative industry.”

SMEI provides a wide range of specialist commercial insurance products. Specifically designed to meet the needs of a number of sectors, including the hair and beauty industry. So, for further information, visit

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