PEOPLE'S CHOICE: South Burnett's best hairdresser
THE race for the South Burnett's most popular hairdresser went all the way to Infiniti and beyond.
With over 400 votes, the South Burnett Times' People's Choice Awards for the region's best hairdresser award was a hard-fought contest.
In somewhat of a surprise victory, Kingaroy salon, Infiniti Hair, came out on top as the region's best hairdresser.
Having only been in business for eight weeks, the owner of the Kingaroy St hair salon, Vanessa Watt, was overwhelmed by the win.
"It really means a lot to me,” Ms Watt said.
She said it was a great reward for such an intense time in her short business journey.
"I only got offered the salon at the end of last year,” she said.
"A lot of people said to me 'there are lots of other hairdressers in town, are you crazy?'.”
Having completed her apprenticeship at fellow Kingaroy hair salon, Studio J, Ms Watt was initially more than happy to continue to work at the salon casually.
It was only a chance encounter with local businessman, Jason Kinsella that sparked her interest in opening her own salon.
"He knew I was finishing my apprenticeship and offered the space to me and I thought, 'why not?',” she said.
The name Infiniti Hair symbolises the passionate hairdresser's somewhat rocky journey so far.
"Infiniti means I will always keep going,” she said.
"A usual apprenticeship takes three years, mine took five.
"I would get a job and two weeks later they couldn't afford me or they wouldn't send me to training.
"One let me go because my grandmother passed away and I couldn't go into work.”
Ms Watt was extremely grateful for all those who voted for her in the People's Choice Awards.
"I just want to say thank you. I honestly can't thank you enough,” she said.
"I didn't know how many hair salons were in the region until these awards.
"I was surprised just how much people were getting involved.”
Stay tuned for our follow-up story where we showcase the South Burnett's top 10 hairdressers, as voted by you.