BUILDING A BRAND: THE SHOWPONY STORY
Stephanie Mason was a successful model and marketer, enjoying a career surrounded by world-class fashion, hairstyling and beauty when she struck upon an idea.
The hairstylists she worked with all seemed to have the same gripe: hair extensions. They couldn’t create the looks and impacts they wanted because hair extensions were poor quality and single-toned — blonde or brunette were the only colour options.
Stephanie was in the chair and chatting with a celebrity makeup artist when they uncovered an opportunity within the industry. “There’s a gap in the market for a good quality extension brand that has a multi-toned range and highlighting,” Stephanie realised.
And so, in 2008, and with the mentorship and backing of her stepfather, who had decades of experience in wig making, Stephanie started Showpony.
A MODEL IDEA
Back in the ‘naughties’, hair extensions had a bad rap. They were made from a blend of synthetic and human hair, some were made entirely from synthetic materials.
The concept was new and there was no real education around the products, resulting in poor placement, bad methods, and hair extensions that looked bulky and obvious.
Salons and hair professionals were hesitant to offer extensions as a service, fearing they couldn’t be used to achieve the transformations clients were after and would damage hair in the process.
“It was a tough gig in the beginning,” Stephanie admits today.
THE SHOWPONY SOLUTION
Showpony created 100% human hair extensions, launching a clip-in range with 11 colours to choose from — six of them with highlights (the fashion at the time).
Stephanie approached celebrity hairstylist Caterina Di Biase, who quickly “fell in love” with Showpony. “She said, ‘what would you say if I took you to fashion week?’,” recalls Stephanie with a laugh. And Caterina did just that.
Since starring in the 2010 Melbourne Fashion Week, Showpony has continued to innovate and grow, with the brand’s signature high-quality extensions now available in clip-in, halo, tape, weft, and micro bead styles. The last colour range count was 26, including an ombre range.
EDUCATION TO EMPOWER
"We’re a proud, Australian-born brand hair fashion and beauty brand offering more than just beautiful hair," says Stephanie.
“We are constantly innovating, paving the way extensions are used in salons, from adding volume and length through to creating chemical-free colour, so they can become a regular service for salons.
“Showpony delivers training in all hair extension methods and techniques to salons, as well as providing support with creativity and consultation processes, plus business and marketing strategies.
“This ensures the customer gets a great result, time and time again.”
THE CRYSTAL BALL
What’s next for Showpony? To become a truly global brand.
We have launched in Europe, are preparing to launch in the UK next, and aim to have a presence in the US — watch this space!
“The vision is to connect salons globally through Showpony product offerings and helping women find solutions for their everyday hair concerns,” she says.
“Showpony empowers women to look and feel beautiful with hair extensions that truly transform.”