Beauty News

Love your locks: hairstyle tips

An expert shares ‘recipes’ for achieving hairstyles with heart.
Love your locks - hairstyle tips

Top Kiwi hairstylist Richard Kavanagh is on a mission to help women love their hair every single day. His new book – called Love Your Hair (Random House, $34.99) – has “recipes” for 24 hot looks with step-by-step guides and photos to make them achievable for you at home. Here he shares some of his expert tips.


What hair tool should every woman have?

A good hairdryer. It’s nice to have quality brushes, combs and accessories but without a good-quality hairdryer you will struggle to make your hair look great. The next most vital tool would be a curling iron. It’s a really versatile way to smooth hair, add shine and create volume.

What is the hair-styling product you wouldn’t be without?

I use an arsenal of products to create the looks I do – sometimes up to six or seven products in one hairstyle. The one I wouldn’t be without is hairspray. I have five different types in my kit, each for a different job and if I had to choose only one, it would be Redken Forceful 23 $36.

In your book, you talk about a technique called blast-drying. What exactly is it?

Blast-drying is pretty much what it sounds like. You simply turn your hairdryer on full speed and full heat and blast your hair dry. If you’re blowdrying your hair smooth, I recommend blast-drying until it is 95% dry before you start working with a brush. This will save you so much energy and get you a better result faster. You can also add styling product to dry hair and blast it to add a flexible base and modern texture before you start creating a shape with a curling iron or an up-do.

What’s the most wearable, achievable style in your book?

I would say the most wearable and achievable style in the book is the textured topknot (below).



**Clean, dry hair

Hair tie or elastic

Tail comb

Bobby pins


Time Required: 5-10 minutes

  1. Tie your hair in a high ponytail, forward of the crown of your head.

  2. Using your tail comb, split off a small amount at the front of the ponytail and backcomb it from roots to ends. Backcomb the entire ponytail from roots to ends for volume and ease of styling.

  1. Lightly smooth out the edges of the ponytail with your hairbrush and then, holding it straight up, twist the entire ponytail gently until it folds down on itself in a topknot.
  1. Tuck the ends under the bun and pin with a bobby pin. Then, work around the edges of the topknot, pinning until it feels secure. Push it into place with your hands and spray lightly with hairspray to hold.

Hot tip: Brushing your hair smooth before tying the ponytail will help you get it extra tight , which adds a level of sophistication to this look.

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