Amandla Stenberg attended Essence Festival 2018 and in-between all the #BlackGirlMagic, was conducting interviews for her new movie, The Hate U Give. The movie stars Regina Hall, Common, Russell Hornsby and more.
We couldn’t get over the 19-year-old’s beautiful ponytail and Picasso like edges, done by none other than celebrity hairstylist, Vernon François. Hello Beautiful spoke exclusively with François, who explained the inspiration behind this look.
François revealed, “She had the leotard on and was showing lots of skin, we wanted to make it feminine, really sexy, but still really strong and bold at the same time.” Well, he achieved just this. Stenberg’s hairstyle looked so fresh as she sat for interviews and panels throughout the day.
“We are really living in this moment of couture fashion, so I wanted to give her what we call, ‘hairline realness,’ but still making it really feminine by giving it really tight and clean. Keeping the hair over the ears, which you see. Giving her a really obnoxious ponytail that’s a bit messy and uncomfortable. I kinda like for things to look a bit unusual and she’s a beautiful canvas to work from because she really explores greatness in that way.” ~ Vernon François
We wanted to know how to recreate this haute hairstyle, which is perfect for summer. Here’s how to get the look in XX easy steps.
Starting off with clean hair, François told Hello Beautiful, “the best thing to do was to moisturize her hair with my Leave-In Conditioner by Vernon François ($28.00, US.VernonFrancois.com), which is really great because it retains moisture and has oils so you can use heat against it. It’s a heat protector at the same time.” Beauties, you want to start with a leave-in conditioner as it not only moisturizes your hair, but also helps detangle and facilitate styling.
After spraying her hair with the Leave-In Conditioner by Vernon François, he roughly blow dried her hair. François explained that you want to half blow dry it so it looks, “like your hair has been half-pressed, it has that frizzy texture to it and then put it back into a ponytail so you already have the volume already.” François is all about allowing ones’ natural texture to shine through the style, stating, “I kinda really like the textures to come through in everything I do.” We’re here for it and his support of all hair textures.
Now, how to achieve these artistic like edges?! François gave us all the details. He used the Göt2b Ultra Glued Invincible Styling Gel ($4.78, Walmart.com). This prouduct is perfect because it doesn’t give you the white flakes in your hair (which shows up strong on darker hair). François joked, “Got to slay down that hairline!” He mixed the Göt2b Ultra Glued Invincible Styling Gel with his Light Weight Styling Serum by Vernon François ($28.00, US.VernonFrancois.com). Why mix the two versus just using one? “I mixed the two together so it doesn’t go too hard and break the hairline. If you look closely, you’ll see the hairline is not too perfect. There is also some wave in the hairline, which is important for the natural texture.”
He finished the look with Paul Mitchell Freeze And Shine Super Spray ($10.42, Walmart.com) explaining that the product “keeps the hair structured and really shiny.”
Viola! Now you can have this look too! François added, “It’s really simple stuff, it’s how you mesh it together. If you look carefully, you’ll see it’s not too perfect. The ponytail has a little bit of give in it. I like it to look like you’ve done it yourself.” Thank you!
“I think sometimes you see something quite beautiful, you have to create hope you can achieve it yourself. Seeing the imperfections, I think, it looks more normal. That’s what I try to emulate, but recognizing she’s on camera, so there are certain parts that look refined. Perfection doesn’t exist and I had to teach myself that and sometimes when it’s done, it’s done.” ~ Vernon François
This achievable ponytail would be perfect for brunch, date night or simply a hot summer day. If you have kinky-curly hair texture, use setting paper to help lay your edges and commit it to memory. Personally, I use Wrapp-It Black Styling Strips ($5.09, SallyBeauty.com).
This is an effortless look and François explaned it was inspired, “by less is more.” He shared, “She took off half the jewelry that she was meant to wear with it as well because we just really appreciated the clean lines that were there and I think the hair compliments the makeup and the outfit.”