First year show attracts over 12,500 attendees and 150 exhibitors.

Phoenix, AZ (March 31, 2011) – The Professional Beauty Association | National Cosmetology Association’s (PBA | NCA) first-ever International Salon & Spa Expo (ISSE) Midwest show left its mark on the Chicagoland area and the Midwest. Beauty professionals from all segments of the industry turned out in support of the Midwest’s newest and most complete and cost effective professional beauty show focused on hair, nails, skin care and cosmetics. Held in Rosemont, Illinois at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, ISSE Midwest attracted over 12,500 attendees and 150 exhibitors.

Attendees enjoyed three days filled with 250 high-quality educational classes based on an array of topics. The show also featured an International Talent Theater, a NAHA classroom featuring top NAHA veterans and an energetic expo floor filled with an array of products and services for professional use only. The headliners for the keynote and talent theaters included everyone from America’s top financial guru, Suze Orman, whose keynote session sold out, to industry stars such as Damien Carney, Beth Minardi, Martin Parsons, and John Simpson. Attendees were also able to obtain CE hours for certain business, hair, nails, massage and wellness classes.

Exhibitors and attendees alike appreciated savings on everything from hotel room rates to parking and the 100 percent enforcement of checking credentials to ensure that only licensed professionals were admitted into the show. While the first ISSE Midwest show was a success and provided a solid base from which to grow, PBA | NCA reiterates its desire to work with all members of the industry to create one strong and viable beauty event for the Midwest. As with all PBA | NCA events, the profits are put back into the professional beauty industry for education, government advocacy, networking, and enhancing the overall stature of beauty professionals everywhere. ISSE Midwest was no exception.

“The momentum from the first of what will be many ISSE Midwest shows is exciting and PBA is committed to providing an even better show in 2012 for the professional beauty industry,” stated Steve Sleeper, Executive Director, PBA | NCA. “As an association of industry volunteers, PBA truly appreciates the many manufacturers, distributors, salon/spa owners, and licensed professionals that believed in the vision of ISSE Midwest and were there to help bring it to life.”

Layout and Energy Allowed People to Connect

ISSE Midwest’s layout, which created a more intimate feel, allowed exhibitors and attendees to connect like never before. The intimate layout of the exhibit floor allowed exhibitors to discuss their products in more detail, and they made a deeper connection with licensed professionals who were eager to learn and buy. This approach was highly effective. From industry leaders such as CND, Conair Pro/RUSK/BaByliss Pro, Joico, Repêchage, and OPI to new trendsetters such as Hattori Hanzo Shears, Sparkleyez, and Vex|Pro, ISSE Midwest had the exhibitors the industry asked for and the list is sure to expand in 2012.

Nobody Does Education Like PBA | NCA

One of the most successful aspects of the ISSE Midwest and ISSE Long Beach shows was the array of quality education offered. Over 250 educational opportunities featuring everything from the latest in hair techniques, taught by industry leaders such as Martin Parsons, to business advice from America’s leading financial guru, Suze Orman, were offered and highly attended. From industry greats such as Beth Minardi, Martin Parsons, the RUSK Creative Team, John Simpson, and current NAHA Hairstylist of the Year, Tony Ricci, to rising stars including Faatemah Ampey, Renee Antonio, Steve Elias, and J’s Hair Academy & Studio, ISSE Midwest offered a diverse mix of premier talent which attendees were able to experience.

The NAHA Room and International Fashion Theater were two education standouts, with attendees appreciating their close proximity to the show floor and the intimate feeling of being able to connect with presenters.

The all new EstheticsAmerica + Wellness Pavilion also provided continuing education (CE) credits and classes from CIDESCO certified trainers for estheticians and massage therapists. The EsteticsAmerica + Wellness Pavilion is a new and exclusive feature of the ISSE Long Beach and ISSE Midwest shows, providing a dedicated space on the show floor for skin care and wellness products, services, and education.

Events Enhance the Excitement of ISSE Midwest

ISSE Midwest also played host to several networking receptions, hair and nail competitions, and the 2011 Legends & Icons Charity Gala. The 2011 Legends & Icons honorees included famed hairstylist, salon owner and educator, Yosh Toya (Legend) and internationally acclaimed salon colorist, educator and product consultant, Beth Minardi (Icon). The event also raised awareness and funding for the NCA CARES Fund, which serves as an umbrella fundraising effort that supports three important salon community outreach programs including Look Good… Feel Better, CUT IT OUT / Salons Against Domestic Abuse, and the NCA Disaster Relief Fund.

Enhancements Being Made to Rosemont, IL

ISSE Midwest 2012 will be held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois and is scheduled for April 15 – 16, 2012. The city of Rosemont is also investing in numerous upgrades to the community and will soon open a new entertainment complex which will feature a multitude of bars, movie theaters, restaurants and entertainment venues. With the already apparent benefits and these new added features to Rosemont, this location will make for an even better ISSE Midwest show experience in 2012.