An international hairdresser who returned to his roots and opened up in Ellesmere Port less than a year ago has the chance to compete in a glamorous national final.

More than 250 clients flocked to the grand opening of The Boutique Atelier at 33-35 Underwood Drive, Whitby where they were welcomed to the new salon by owner Richard Phillipart.

Of the opening, Richard said: “What a fantastic day we had. It was a huge success.”

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Now success has beckoned in the north west regional heat of the L’Oréal Colour Trophy Awards 2016 where the salon won one of only two coveted places at the grand final in June which could see them winning the overall title of L’Oréal Men’s Image Award 2016.

The team, led by Richard, fought off strong competition and wowed a panel of high-profile award winning judges with their autumn/winter 2016/17 fashion inspired look.

After 1,000 initial entries and 540 regional finalists, including some of the industry’s leading salons, The Boutique Atelier is one of just 18 nationwide which will complete one final challenge to win the prestigious award competing against other regional winners in the Men’s category.

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Celebrating their success the team say the grand final show promises a thrilling and inspirational evening featuring spectacular hair shows by some of the most illustrious names in hairdressing followed by a five course dinner and the awards presentation.

If they become overall winners the salon can look forward to a once-in-a-lifetime prize package which includes a three day European trip with a photo shoot to showcase their winning look and a fashion shoot with a leading consumer glossy magazine.

Starting in hairdressing aged 13 at what was Robert Marc hairdressing on Underwood Drive, Richard says he was instantly hooked on the industry.

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Spending his free time in the salon watching and learning he quickly gained his qualifications and excelled producing his own artisan hair show aged just 16.

At 22 he decided to move on and opened The Boutique in Little Sutton with one ideal in mind, to create the type of salon he’d always wanted to work in where the craft of hairdressing was always put first.

The salon quickly demanded more space and three years later expanded and relocated to Great Sutton and became The Boutique Salon and Spa, now employing a multi-award-winning team of 13 committed and dedicated artists.

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Proudly moving into The Boutique Atelier, Richard said he was is returning to his roots and taking over where it all began welcoming clients to the even more vibrant and busy salon with his talented team of award-winning hairdressers.

Richard is said to be one of the UK’s most in-demand stylists, with his skills being called upon by some of the world’s largest brands in luxury hair care.

His cult celebrity following sees stars from Coronation Street and many other major TV shows calling on him to get them red-carpet ready.

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He has worked on shows from Hollyoaks to Eastenders and his client list reads like a who’s-who of the soap world.

Richard works backstage at all the major fashion weeks across the world including New York, London, Milan and Paris. He has styled hair for brands including Chanel, Vivienne Westwood, Burberry, Dior and many more.