How’d Beyonce go from relaxed to natural without skipping a beat?

Expert: Tina Knowles – Destiny Child’s stylist, former salon owner, Beyonce’s mom.

“It took Beyonce about two years to grow the relaxer out. She couldn’t afford to cut her hair off and start from scratch, so we cut her hair a little above her shoulders and trimmed the ends as we went along. Wearing braids during the transition period really protected her hair onstage and saved her style from sweat disaster. When she had to wear it straight for an awards show or appearance, we pressed her hair and used a flat iron. Her hair is not as easy to manage as she thought it would be. Sometimes we curl her hair with a curling iron to give it a softer look. When she had the relaxer, coloring made her hair so fragile. Now, because her hair isn’t double processed, she lightens the front without causing much damage. Look for her twists in her upcoming movie Fighting Temptation with Cuba Gooding Jr.”

With her hectic schedule of touring and appearances, how does Alicia Keys change her braided styles so often?

The Expert: Nikki Tucker for Hair by Nikki – Alicia’s exclusive hair braider.

“I go on tour with Alicia, but I’ll braid in the studio or at her house—whenever, wherever I can. I’m a stickler about stray, fuzzy hairs so we change her style every three or four days. There are times when she’ll have to attend an awards show and have a television or video shoot the next day. For those occasions, I’ll try something like braid the front and keep the back out for the awards show; then for the video shoot I’ll keep the front as is and just braid the back. Layering rows of cornrows cuts time and adds volume. The more layers, the more options. You can take some out and braid them in another direction to change the look. Between styles I advise Alicia to take the braids out and let her hair breathe for a day or two.”

How does Mary J. Blige protect her hair from damage caused by coloring it?

Expert: Tré Major for Dawn to Dusk – Celebrity stylist

“Mary loves to color her hair. She is daring so it allows me to do whatever I dream up. She has the perfect look, attitude and skin coloring. Pink, red, blonde—it just works.

Mary colors her own cropped hair but to really experiment and for quick changes, I customize wigs and hair extensions for her. Weaves and wigs give you the full effect of color without damaging the hair. I usually use three or four colors for streaking and to give the style depth. I always deep-condition Mary’s hair to keep hair color vibrant. If you color your hair, always give yourself a hot oil treatment. With hair color, maintenance is so important. Coloring can strip hair of its natural oils. If your car runs out of oil, it breaks down. The same is true for your hair. The loss of oil makes it dull and lifeless. A weekly hot oil treatment absolutely makes a difference.”