Willow Smith with hair styled by Vernon Francois for the 2024 Met Gala. - Photo courtesy of Theo Wargo/Getty Images

Willow Smith with hair styled by Vernon Francois for the 2024 Met Gala.

Photo courtesy of Theo Wargo/Getty Images

Celebrity hairstylist Vernon François worked with singer Willow Smith on a look emulating African Royalty, using OLAPLEX products for a healthy and strong finished look.

“When crafting this look, I didn't adhere strictly to transient trends," explained François. "Instead, I focused on accentuating specific features to ensure a timeless appeal while infusing an element of allure and sophistication. The intention was to evoke a sense of tradition intertwined with seduction, ultimately embodying elegance and romance.”

Step-by-Step: How Vernon François Achieved This Look

  1. Braiding Backwards: Start by braiding the hair backwards, focusing on creating a clean look from the front and leave out the low back section.
  2. Pulling Up the Back Section: Pull up the loose hair at the back into the braided section of the hair to maintain a neat appearance, this creates a defined shape.
  3. Using Rectangle Polystyrene Circles: Employ lightweight Polystyrene circles as stencils to shape the hairstyle, maintaining precision and structure.
  4. Hair Doughnut Placement: Wrap natural kinky hair around hair doughnuts and place them strategically to add volume and shape to the hairstyle.
  5. Binding with Cotton: Bind the entire head with 100% cotton, incorporating loose Afro kinky straight hair for a realistic look and securing the shape of the hairstyle.
  6. Sculpting and Weaving: Sculpt the hairstyle further as needed and weave Afro kinky straight hair extensions, through the cotton binding to add texture and dimension.

 How François Used OLAPLEX:

  • OLAPLEX Nº.3 Hair Perfector: Applied as a pre-treatment to strengthen and repair the hair. I love this product. It’s a staple in my kit.
  • OLAPLEX Nº.6 Bond Smoother: Applied to damp hair to provide moisture and protect against heat damage. I genuinely use this on most of my clients. It’s a great preset.
  • OLAPLEX Nº.7 Bonding Oil: This product serves multiple purposes: besides massaging it into the scalp, it acts as a finishing touch, enhancing shine and smoothing where necessary, all while offering protection against environmental damage. Keep this close to you!
  • OLAPLEX Nº.4D Clean Volume Detox Dry Shampoo: As a personal touch, I love applying dry shampoo at the end of the styling process. It not only refreshes the hair but also adds a subtle, natural finish. I particularly enjoy using it on hair extensions, especially curly ones, to tone down any excessive shine. This technique works wonders for red carpet looks and special events, giving the style that perfect finishing touch.

To learn more about OLAPLEX products, visit olaplex.com

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