Top celebrity hairstylist Bradley Irion tells us the secrets to Kelly Bensimon’s beachy waves!
Bradley Irion has been working with Kelly Bensimon for years, and she’s now one of his best friends! He says she’s a “wonderful, generous person– if you have the opportunity to be a friend of hers, you’ll have a friend for life.” Because Kelly has such a crazy schedule, he often travels with her, and he’ll even make an appearance or two on this season of the Real Housewives of New York! But Bradley is quick to say he doesn’t want to steal the spotlight: “The show’s not about me– I’m there for her if she needs me to be there, but I’m fine if I’m not.” He likes all of the housewives he’s met, saying, “The ladies are all great. I know she fights with them sometimes, but that’s because they’re in that job together.”
When Bradley first met Kelly, her hair was shorter, smoother, and darker. He said to her, “You’re so beautiful– you shouldn’t look like a real housewife. You need to be hot and sexy all the time!” He envisioned her hair as a darker, warm gold version of Gisele’s beachy style. “It’s done, but it looks like maybe she could have slept in it, too.” He wanted to have Kelly’s hair better reflect her personality, and he’s succeeded! “She’s a fun, sexy woman. When you look at her now, she looks beautiful and radiant.”
Bradley lightened Kelly’s color when he started working with her, which added to the beachy look. He says that “her hair lightens up naturally because she’s often out in the sun.” Bradley took inspiration from this and chose natural highlights: “a darker root that fades into lighter ends is nice for her.” (He says this type of highlight is also great for people who want to save money on highlights, or who aren’t ready to commit, since you don’t have to get them touched up as often.)
TRY THE LOOK YOURSELF
To get Kelly’s gorgeous tousled waves, Bradley does the following:
- Apply Oribe Creme for Style to damp hair.
- Spray Oribe Volumista onto hair for body. Flip your hair upside down and blow it dry, smoothing the top with a Mason Pearson brush. But be gentle: “If you do too much of a heavy duty blowout on hair, you can kill the natural texture. Sometimes people get their hair so straight that they can’t get curl back into it. You need a little texture for volume.” (This applies for straight or wavy hair. For curly hair, you will need to blow it straight enough to get rid of the natural curl.)
- Using a 1.5-inch curling iron, curl a 1.5-2-inch section of hair, beginning mid-shaft: this is the part that is hardest to curl, so you want it exposed to the heat the longest. (Plus, it saves your ends from further damage– they curl the easiest and are already damaged, so it’s better to curl them last.)
- Drop the curl out into your hand and pull it gently to straighten slightly; this will give it an irregular wave.
- Continue throughout hair.
What do YOU think? Will you be trying Bradley’s technique on your own hair?
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