To look at Mary Louis (ML) Parker, the fabulous star of Showtime's Weeds (shooting now for next season) you might not believe she has naturally curly hair.
Not only does she have natural curls, I got the inside scoop on how her hair is styled by her longtime celebrity hairdresser Robert Hallowell.
It seemed like a good topic to tackle while Robert, HB.com's Edan and I were nestled into a cozy booth the other night at Rosa's Mexicana in downtown Los Angeles on Olympic and Figurero.
The food was amazing, there was a waterwall next to our booth and we were happily munching on table side guacamole.
Robert, whom I totally adore, has known ML since they worked together many years ago on the film "Boys On The Side". Although Robert (known by his friends as Raw because of his love of raw ingredients for his hair care line) didn't actually style ML for that film, they became fast friends.
Over the years Robert has styled ML's tresses for many Red Carpet events and has been her hairdresser on past seasons of Weeds. He is also doing her hair for the upcoming 2010 season.
Robert reported Mary Louise has long natural brunette (level 5 with some lighter ends) curls, extending to the middle of her back, with an assortment of curl patterns interspersed throughout her head. She has softer curls extending from her occipital bone down her back with curlier texture at her ears. Mary Louise has lots of volume throughout with good curly root direction which forms a C shape as the ringlets cascade past her shoulders.
Robert noted her brunette hair has wonderful dimension with areas of natural light and dark hues swirling through from the roots to the ends giving her lots of richness to her texture.
Although her hair tends to puff and frizz, ML actually likes it that way because Robert says it allows her to rock that New York cool and natural vibe she enjoys so much. However, when working on Weeds or a film, her hair has to be more finished.
Robert deploys a form of curl clumping on ML when she is on set for Weeds. He explained she cleanses her hair and conditions her curls at home, towel blots and travels to the set. Once there, Robert applies a leave-in conditioner and detangles her damp tresses. From that point he applies a base curl clumping or defining formula of elixir and gel with a slight bit of volumizing tonic finger picked through the ends. Robert said ML has thinner curls along the perimeter and he likes to equalize them.
Robert uses his fingers to wind the damp curls into ringlets then clips or pins them to her Mary Louise's scalp and allows them to set for a few minutes. Then he unpins a section at a time and uses a long finger diffuser to dry. Once the curls are dry he rewinds them and repins them while he works on adjacent sections.
When all of the sections have been diffused, he allows the curls to cool for 7-10 minutes and then takes all the clips and pins out. He hits the entire head again with a diffuser, using his fingers to gently crunch the curls shaping some loose sweeping waves throughout the top with bouncy looser curls throughout the perimeter, just the way Mary Louise's character wear her hair in "Weeds".
For more inside curly girl scoops on Mary Louis Parker, stay tuned for Roberts naturally curly hair tips.
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