Mario Tricoci, Expert Judges Choose The Final Five

Contestants to Walk the Runway at Fashion Focus Chicago as Final Challenge in Mario, Make Me a Model Competition

CHICAGO (Sept. 17, 2012) – Mario Tricoci and a panel of expert judges have narrowed down the group of Mario, Make Me a Model contestants to the final five.Laura Almazan (Homer Glen, IL), Birgit Dalgaard (Chicago, IL), Caroline Mazurek(Chicago, IL), Olivia Simmons (Libertyville, IL), and Mana Winkler (Naples, FL, a student at DePaul University) made the cut after six weeks of model training, and now have the chance to participate in a professional fashion shoot and will walk the runway at a Fashion Focus Chicago headline show.

“This year we have a truly diverse representation of beauty among our finalists. Any one of them could model. Choosing who should stay had to be done purely by factual evaluations rating each contestant thus far in their training, TV taping, still photos after their makeovers and weighing in the public vote online,” said beauty and fashion innovator Mario Tricoci. “While this last elimination was difficult, all of the judges feel that we have chosen the best five for the most high-profile parts of the competition -- the fashion shoot and the runway show.”

Since early August, seven Mario, Make a Model semi-finalists have received model makeovers from Mario Tricoci Hair Salons & Day Spas and participated in runway training with Factor Women, fitness training with Fitness Formula Clubs, photo shoots with Matt Ferguson Photography, and a CBS2 commercial shoot. The remaining five finalists will continue to work with the experts from Mario Tricoci Hair Salons & Day Spas, Factor Women, Fitness Formula Clubs and Matt Ferguson Photography as they prepare for a Michigan Avenue magazine photo shoot and the Mario Tricoci and vitaminwater® present Fashion Takes Flight runway show.

The winner of Mario, Make Me a Model will be revealed on Oct. 18 after the competition’s five finalists have completed their last challenge -- walking the runway among professional models at Mario Tricoci and vitaminwater® present Fashion Takes Flight. The show will take place at the Millennium Park Tent, Chase Promenade North and is open to the public. Tickets are available for $35 each at

The winner of Mario, Make Me a Model will receive consideration for a contract with Factor Women Management and a five-night Apple Vacations trip for two to Riu Palace Las Americas in Cancun, Mexico, which includes meals and drinks at the resort, round-trip airfare. Michigan Avenue Magazine is providing roundtrip limousine transportation to/from Chicago O’Hare for the trip. The winner will also receive $500 in COSE cosmetics from Mario Tricoci, a one-year membership to Fitness Formula Clubs, and more.

Six areas influence Mario Tricoci’s final decision on a winner: makeover results; the fashion shoot; the TV spot; fitness training; their runway walk; and the public vote. Visit for details on both voting options.

Mario, Make Me a Model provides aspiring models with the platform they need to make their modeling mark. The program’s finalists undergo a 12-week model transformation and hone their skills through appearances in local TV commercials, a magazine fashion spread, and on the runway during a professional fashion show. While there’s only one Mario, Make Me a Model winner, all finalists are considered for modeling contracts.  Since the program’s inception in 2008, nearly 2,400 contestants have attended the open model calls. With five finalists selected each year, the program has launched the careers of more than half of these young women and men who have gone on to work as professional models.


About Mario Tricoci Hair Salons & Day Spas

Mario Tricoci Hair Salons & Day Spas -- the leader in luxury hair styling and spa services for more than 30 years -- operates 17 Mario Tricoci Hair Salon & Day Spa locations and Mario Tricoci Too Hair Salons in Illinois.  The company offers an extensive menu of the best in hair, skin and body care, as well as custom make-up and nail services.  Mario Tricoci Hair Salons & Day Spas maintains a highly-skilled team and remains the leader in personal care services and treatments.  A local favorite, the company has been voted Chicago’s best hair salon by Allure magazine; ranked one of the top hair salons in Chicago by the readers of Chicago magazine; and selected by Chicagoans in a FOX News poll as the number one spa in Chicago. For more information please visit Make appointments online or by calling 847/202-1900. For special offers and insider information, join Mobile Mario by texting PERKS to 77953.