MasterChef Australia fans horrified by alarming detail in competition: 'I cringed'

Viewers of the popular cooking cooking competition have noticed an issue with the contestants and now we can't unsee it.

MasterChef Australia 2024 has started with a bang with 22 new hopefuls vying for the chance to be crowned the winner and awarded $250,000. This year returning judge Andy Allen is joined by Poh Ling Yeow, Sofia Levin and Jean-Christophe Novell and, for the first two weeks of the competition, Jamie Oliver who will serve as guest judge.

Fans of the popular series have been particularly enthusiastic about Jean-Christophe - who has nearly 50 years of experience in the hospitality industry and is the owner of the award-winning Novelli Academy Cookery School - with one viewer calling him a "wonderful addition to the brand."

The series has wasted no time in turning up the heat in the MasterChef kitchen, with night one seeing the cooks compete for the only immunity pin that will be available all season and night two featuring an intense service challenge cooking for former contestants.

MasterChef fans have noticed a troubling detail in the first two episodes of the competition. Credit: Channel Ten
MasterChef fans have noticed a troubling detail in the first two episodes of the competition. Credit: Channel Ten

Naturally, it's a high-stakes race and mistakes are made (like Lily's choux not cooking on night one or the burgundy team asking if they could serve one scallop as an entrée) but viewers have honed in on one detail that they feel has crossed a line.


"Please, please, please, somebody take hold of these contestants and put their hair out of the way of the food, I cringe watching it fall all over their faces," someone wrote in a fan forum. "Pretty mop caps would be great."

The post was quickly met with replies as people agreed that having loose hair in the kitchen gave them the 'icks.'

"That hair all over their faces is very annoying and not a good look around food," someone agreed.

Team Burgundy have won the chance to compete for immunity after winning the service challenge. Credit: Channel Ten
Team Burgundy team served up scallops and hair. Credit: Channel Ten

"I have shoulder-length hair and if I forget to tie it back, I can guarantee there will be a hair in the food if I cook," someone else shared. "So there must be at least one hair in the food they make."

"And beard nets, please!" another added.

Said another fan, "Have never understood how their hair/beards are not covered."

Over on X, the conversation was much the same.

"I just want to grab some scissors and snip all those little strands of hair the ladies have framing their faces," someone rather dramatically wrote. "PUT YOUR HAIR UP IN THE KITCHEN."

"Whenever the dumplings arrive (if they actually do), I'm assuming the hero ingredient will be hair," another view wrote.

Added yet another, "Ok we’re confirming the trend of food and workplace safety going downhill every year. Why are we seeing hair in faces?! Why are we seeing HAIR TOUCHING? Why are we seeing bracelets, dangly earrings and RINGS? I know they’re home cooks but we’re not at home!"

So are these viewers onto something? Or is it not that big of a deal?

According to the Food Authority of New South Wales, it's the former.

There are a few hairy offenders in this photo. Credit: Channel Ten
There are a few hairy offenders in this photo. Credit: Channel Ten

The health and hygiene requirements of food handlers (anyone who works in a food business and handles food or surfaces that are likely to come into contact with food) are that they must "tie back long hair, and take all practical measures to prevent hair contaminating food" and "remove loose jewellery, avoid wearing jewellery and decorations, including nail polish and false nails, on the hands and wrists."


So, yeah, there are just a few violations happening in the MasterChef kitchen but hey, I'd accept a couple of errant hairs in exchange for a few bites of that incredible-looking meringue with grapefruit curd & Aperol caramel served up by the burgundy team any day.

Want the latest celebrity news? Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and TikTok.