For this year’s Shu Uemura Art of Hair Gallery of Style competition, hairstylists from Shu salons across the country created their own artistic hair creations. Their challenge: to interpret the contest theme: “Tokyo-Rama”, a fascinating juxtaposition of modern design and traditional architecture. Create an innovative hairstyle inspired by the diversity of Tokyo’s landscape.

Check out the Top 15 Semi-Finalists below who prove that hairstyling is an art form. Vote for your favorite style AND enter for a chance to win a one year supply of the Gallery of Style products.*

*only one vote per person.
voting ends 4/26 at 11:59 p.m. EST.

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lauren sill
LuxeLab | Los Angeles, California
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I was inspired by red Buddhist temples in Tokyo, especially the Senso-ji temple in Tokyo. I love how intricate and perfectly geometrical the tiles on the roofs are, and how there are multiple levels of curved edges. I was also inspired by the Meiji shrine, how it is a strong man-made structure surrounded by lush greenery. The frothy matte expanded braids surrounding the stronger shiny structured braids represents the beauty of nature surrounding something beautiful that is man-made, which reminds me of Shu Uemura as a brand
products used
I prepped dry hair with Ample Angora for hold and fullness, then used Wonder Worker to capture flyways as I braided, and Texture Wave for a frothy matte texture on the outer braids. I used Sheer Lacquer before flat-ironing the edges to give them more definition and to hold in their curved shape. My star product was Detail Master, for a high-shine finish on the internal braids and as a top coat of shine and hold on the finished look.
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karly cagliani
Matthew Morris Salon | Denver, Colorado
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I was inspired by the sleek and textured designs found in buildings throughout Tokyo. Japanese architecture combines structural and artistic culmination. Many structures in Japan have a uniqueness to them and share a variety of design details. My look was influenced by the wood carvings and curved roof tops often seen in Japanese architecture.
products used
To achieve this look I used the following Shu Uemura products: Satin Design, Kengo Feather, Essence Absolue, Touch of Gloss, and Sheer Laquer. Satin Design set me up for a sleek and polished blow dry. I used Kengo Feather to control any flyaways and maintain a sleek appearance with flexible control. I created maximum shine by layering both Essence Absolue and Touch of Gloss throughout the hair. To finish this look off I generously used Sheer Lacquer finishing spray for a strong hold, but soft appearance.
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alexandra ramirez
The Grand Beauty Spa | Tampa, Florida
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
Had you asked me to draw inspiration from anywhere else in the world I'm sure I would not have felt so limitless. Nothing fascinates me like Tokyos architecture. Some of my greatest influence for this piece were St. Ignacious' prismic floral curling, The rising ovals that welcome the commuters of Idabashi Subway, and The Atago Jinja Stairway To Heaven shrine-historically believed to bring good fortune to ones career just to name a few. With such extraordinary structures surrounding the vibrant people of Tokyo there's no wonder why it's home to the worlds most innovative trends.
products used
Detail Master, Texture Wave, Volume Maker, Master Wax, and Sheer Laquer
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madison wade
Matthew Morris Salon | Denver, Colorado
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
For this shoot I was inspired by the intricate new age buildings and modern design exampling "Tokyo-Rama" but also keeping the simplicity of the diversity in Tokyo"s landscape.
products used
Texture Wave, Sheer Lacquer, Straight Forward, Essence Absolue
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jasmine anna galazka
Warren Tricomi Salon | New York, New York
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I was inspired by traditonal yet contemporary but obstract landscape of Tokyo. Its diversity spoke to me and I tried my best to capture that within my hairstyle.
products used
Cotton Uzu, Sheer Lacquer, Ample Angora , Master Wax
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jesse henry
Wonderland Beauty Parlor | New York, New York
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I was inspired by Tokyo's structural architecture in contrast with the natural element of the delicate cherry blossom.
products used
Ample Angora, Sheer Lacquer, Volume Maker, Essence Absolue
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brian zinno
Antonio Prieto Salon | New York, New York
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
Tokyo Rama, specifically the term o-rama inspired me to think about extremes for my look. I embraced the traditional red of Tokyo for a bold contrast of color, coupled with the structure and silhouette to give a nod to a modern temple.
products used
Liquid Fabric, Sheer Lacquer, Fiber Lift, Ample Angora
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yuki yasui
Dop Dop Salon | New York, New York
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I was inspired by the curves of modern japanese architecture and the current of the water. My design was based on seamless movement and balance found in nature.
products used
Sheer Lacquer, Shape Paste, Detail Master
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takatoshi ozawa
Arte Salon | New York, New York
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
My inspiration for this look is twofold: the braids pay homage to the buildings and temples of old Japan. If you look at photos from that period, you can see the clean lines and structure in the architecture, and I try to parallel that in the style I created. The style on the ends is my take on fireworks. In Japan, we call them hanabi, or "fire flowers". Hanabi are put on quite often in the summer seasons in Japan. I replicated the choreography of shapes to mimic exploding fire flowers.
products used
Sheer Lacquer, Fiber Lift, Shape Paste, Liquid Fabric
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naomi booth
Bryce Jermain Salon | Minneapolis Minnesota
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
tokyo skyline, Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower, Tokyo Tower, tall buildings within the skyline
products used
Ample Angora, Wonder Worker, Volume Maker, Texture Wave, Sheer Lacquer, Color Lustre Dry Cleaner
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phillip rosado
Educe Salon | Orlando, Florida
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
My inspiration was the Skytree observation deck, in Tokyo Japan. I love the shape of the observation deck, It has a combination of new and traditional Japanese architecture. My models hair is extremely fine and extremely long. So I added body, texture and by crimping and teasing her hair to create a variation of the shape of the sky tree. It was very challenging and that's what I enjoyed the most. These contest are great for allowing artist to push there creativity to higher level using the best products in the world like Shu Uemura. Thank you for your consideration of my design.
products used
I used Muroto Volume shampoo and conditioner then put Depsea Foundation spray with Ample Angora for heat protection and volume blow dried hair then used Detail Master to crimp hair and Volume Maker to finish.
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jaimé de la rosa
Matthew Morris Salon | Denver, Colorado
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
Tokyo Rama is the theme so I was inspired by the Tokyo Skytree by utilizing chain infused with the hair, the fluttery flow of the tail end of a koi fish inspired the movement of my design and the Traditional Japanese Bride (Bunkin Takashimada) inspired the fish tail braid and updo.
products used
Satin Design Polishing Milk for my prep and blow dry Ample Angora foam for volume Liquid Fabric to add texture to the fish tail braid Sheer Lacquer finishing spray
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cassey lundell
Lunatic Fringe | Salt Lake City, Utah
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I was inspired by all of the amazing architectural structures and of course, the beautiful Geishas. This is my uniquely structured take on a geisha.
products used
Urban Moisture, Wonder Worker, Essence Absolue and Sheer Lacquer
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dannie ybarra
Lunatic Fringe Eleventh | Salt Lake City, Utah
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
I am absolutely in love with Japan. For my hairstyle, I chose to go with something inspired by the rice fields and ocean waves that I saw so much of during my visit there. I believe the most gorgeous things to see are created and inspired by Mother Earth.
products used
Texture Wave, Sheer Lacquer, Essence Absolue
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kirby rimmer
Studio Gaven Hair Salon | Franklin, Tennesee
Tokyo-Rama to me is:
My inspiration was in the architecture and style behind Tokyo!
products used
Detail Master , Texture Wave, Sheer Lacquer, Depsea Foundation and Volume Maker