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Florida salon holds creative fantasy hair competition to boost morale

Posted at 5:30 PM, Nov 09, 2020

PALM HARBOR, Fla. — They call it the Olympics of hair. Every two years top stylists from around the globe meet in a different country for the world championships. Due to the pandemic, this year’s event was canceled, so a salon in Palm Harbor, Florida decided to do their own internal competition.

They aren’t just hairdos, they are works of art at Salon Bella Flora.

“I kept getting the comments like, ‘Are you kidding me, this is awesome,'” said owner Flora Paskalakis Stoltz.

Before Stoltz owned her own salon, she was traveling the world, cutting and combing hair, against the best of the best.

“When you are at the world championships, it’s like being in a huge stadium and there’s hundreds of competitors competing at one time and it's intense,” said Stoltz.

So as a way to boost staff morale during a difficult year, she decided to hold her own competition. The theme was fantasy.

“Let's do something fun, let's get creative juices flowing, let's get inspired, let's get into teams and team work,” said Stoltz.

For some of these stylists, it was their first time participating in this type of competition, while for others it was a trip down memory lane.

“I was excited to get outside my comfort zone, try new things, do better, be better at what I do, it was really fun,” said Arianna Shuster.

“I think it pumped us up, it kind of brought us all together, a few of us didn’t know each other very well so it gave us a chance to spend a lot of time together and learn from each other,” said Katherine Mahinis.

They say the key to remember is there are no real rules.

“We’re going to do Mother Nature the Root of All Evil, we didn’t go to Michaels and buy branches and leaves, we went to the yard and started picking up stuff,” said Denise Ramik

In the end, all three teams were winners, gaining accolades virtually from renowned judges, opening the door to the world championships in Japan next year.

"I would love to, I wish I can join the team but we'll see," said Rovena Lulaj.

This story originally reported by Robert Boyd on