Reader Q&A: How Do I Create a Pompadour?

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The pompadour is this season's hottest hairstyle, whether your hair is Janet Jackson-short or Beyonce-long. The only issue is figuring out how to create this super-chic, poufed-in-the-front style. Here, we answer a pompadour-challenged reader's most burning hair question, and offer a gallery of sky-high strands for celeb inspiration! QUESTION: "I love the look of a pompadour, but I have no idea how to do the look on my own hair. I have shoulder length, natural hair. Help!" Camille R., Tacoma, WA ANSWER: From a sky-high updo to a more subtle, half-up/half-down style, the pompadour is versatile, sexy, and flattering on all hair lengths. According to Latrice Strader, Master Hair Stylist at Washington DC's Destiny De'Ve Hair Salon, all you need to pull off this bodacious 'do is a rat-tail comb and a light hold hairspray. "Part out a panel of hair from your hairline to the middle of the top of your head," she explains."It should be a five-inch space. Use the rat-tail comb to tease four inches out of the five, leaving out the first inch by your hairline. Then, smooth this piece back over the teased section, secure with bobby pins, and mist with a light holding spray like Sebastian Professional Shaper Zero Gravity ($21). If you have very thin or fine hair, add synthetic hair to the teased section to create more volume." Your pompadour is done, but don't neglect the rest of your hair! "The look is only effective when the sides are really smooth and clean," says Strader. "If you have short hair or you're wearing a ponytail or an updo, make sure you slick the sides back. If you're wearing your hair down, tuck it behind your ears. The tighter the sides, the more dramatic the pompadour!"