"Headphone Hair" Is Now a Thing

Faran Krentcil
Elle

From ELLE

Headphones make traveling, exercising, or even running errands easier. For many women, they're also the wearable equivalent of a "do not disturb" sign. But earbuds' skinny wires can snare curly hair, while bigger models can dent topknots and beachy waves, as the Beats by Dre team noticed firsthand. That's why they enlisted hair guru Riawna Capri (see: Jennifer Lawrence, Selena Gomez, Emma Roberts...) to create coifs for their best-sellers.

We called Capri at her West Hollywood salon to get more information... and also, to quote Carly Rae Jepsen, we really (really, really, really, really, really) like her.

So "headphone hair" is a thing now?

Yeah, but I keep thinking, "what took us so long?" Often, headphones can mess with your hair-they can make it flat or tangled, like actual bedhead… so when Beats by Dre said, "Can you collaborate with us on this?" I thought, "Well, I'm always telling people to make their hair work for them, to use its natural form as an advantage... Why aren't we making our headphones work for our hair? It can't be that hard." And it isn't. That's the good news.

We always see photos of celebrities at the airport, and most of the time, their hair is great. Are they using these hair tricks?

You mean "The Jet Set," where you use your headphones to help hold your hair up for a long flight? It really works. [Laughing] Even if you're not getting your picture taken, you know? You [twist] up your hair, and then when you land at the airport, you undo the setting, and you'll have big, voluminous hair. And you don't need a curling iron or a styling tool, because the headphones are your styling tool. Having them work with you is so huge.

You also have a style for workouts with earbuds...

Yeah, I work out all the time, and I know what hairstyle holds the best. A bun when you're jumping up and down? It doesn't work. And if you're doing something like Body By Simone where you're on a trampoline all the time- are you kidding? Ponytails are going to come out. A braid holds the best, and even if you don't know how to do a complicated braid, you probably learned how to do the classic three-strand braid just by playing with your Barbies. And now that we're moving more towards wireless [headphones], just tucking the [wire] behind your braid seems like the easiest option for sure, because they won't get in the way.

Lots of girls wash their hair right after workouts. But can you use sweat to your advantage?

Abso-fuckin'-lutely. If you think about all those popular beach sprays, they're basically just made of salt. And what's the same thing as salt? Sweat. So the answer is absolutely. Any kind of vigorous activity will definitely activate the texture of your hair kind of like a sea salt spray. So after the gym, you can take advantage of that added hold and texture.

What about with color? Will too many workouts damage your highlights?

Hmm. That's an interesting question. To my knowledge, sweat itself isn't going to affect or change your color. What you have to look out for is salt and sun, or heat, together. I don't believe sweating is going to mess up your color, but salt and sun together can absolutely bleach your hair. Look at those surfers who have never colored their hair a day in their lives, but because they're constantly in the ocean and constantly in the sun, they're blonde. The combination of sun and salt lightens your hair, so your color will fade quicker if you're doing a surf workout for sure. But in the gym? No.

Can you wear headphones at the salon, or is that rude? What if you don't feel like talking, or you're shy?

This is a great question, and please spread the word on this: Sometimes your favorite clients are the ones who sit in a chair and don't say a word. If you've had a rough day and you don't feel like talking, that's fine. Believe me, we've all been there. And as a hair stylist who talks to people all day, every day, it's part of our job to kind of read the energy. Do they want to talk? Some clients come in, and you're basically their therapist. We get a lot of dirt, we get a lot of secrets, and that's basically a whole other article.

It would be, except hairdressers are also the best at keeping secrets. You guys NEVER talk.

That's true! You're right, I will never spill secrets. But one of the things that bums me out about beauty schools is that they don't teach any basic psychology. And the reality is, hair professionals are basically free therapists for a lot of women. I'd like to change beauty education so there's a component of that, you know? But regardless, as a client, you just need to be you, and do whatever makes you the happiest. Definitely don't worry about being shy or awkward. If you want to talk, cool. If you just want to finish your book or read a magazine? I totally get it. And let me tell you something, the quiet girl that sits in the chair and reads for 3 hours? That can be a dream come true.

Any other tips for those of us who still get nervous in the salon?

Well, with the holidays coming up, everyone is trying to get into the salon before they have to go home, or go to everyone's holiday parties and New Years [parties]. So please book early. Book now. Believe me, we'll thank you. And we'll be able to give you more of our time, too.

Last question: Are you going to Paris for the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show this year?

I believe we are! We had the most incredible time last year... So I'll be doing some headphone hair for sure. The flight from LA to Paris is long.

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