TODAY Gwent hair and beauty students will go up against the best the UK has to offer in the finals of acompetition.

The Coleg Gwent students battled it out with a variety of creative looks in Bristol on February 17, scooping seven first, four second and four third places between them.

Winners placed in the top three will now represent the college at the UK-wide final of the Association of Hairdressers and Therapists skills competition in Blackpool today.

Among the finalists are students based at campuses in Newport, Cross Keys and Blaenau Gwent.

City of Newport lecturer Alison Edwards said: “In the fast evolving hair and beauty industry, competitions like this enable students to progress and make links within the business, as well as share knowledge and be inspired.”

Blaenau Gwent lecturer Helena Bassett added: “All students did exceptionally well, and we wish them all the best in the Blackpool final.”