Nia Long's Hair Diary

We look back at the hairstyle evolution of Actress Nia Long. Get an inside look at Long's red carpet style.
ESSENCE.COM Mar, 02, 2009

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“One of the most beautiful and talented actresses of our time, the versatile Nia Long, is a hairdresser’s dream. She is willing to try new styles and make it look so easy, like this style she wore to the 31st NAACP Image Awards. This look can be achieved using a very large barrel curling iron or a blow out with a round brush,” shares celeb hairstylist Andrea Wilson, who recently styled Long’s tresses during New York Fashion Week.

By Qianna Smith

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Celebrated hairstylist Andrea Wilson’s achievements have been featured over the past ten years in many venues encompassing the print, video, film, and fashion industries. Wilson’s work has been published in Vogue, Vibe and Allure magazines. She was also the key hairstylist for Bravo’s TV show “Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style.” Andrea recently had the pleasure of working with the fabulous Nia Long during New York Fashion Week and shares her expertise on how to get Nia’s star style.

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“At the 2004 premiere of “Alfie,” Nia’s hair is worn straight with a slight curve at the end. You can get this look at home by using a flat iron and a little hair polish to keep it silky and straight,” shares Andrea, who has also styled the hair of Missy Elliot, Alicia Keys, Veronica Webb and Lauryn Hill.

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“A roller set, flat iron or a blow out using a Mason Pearson brush will give you this look. Work a quarter sized drop of CHI Silk Fusion Oil throughout the hair for a silky smooth shine,” says Andrea, on how to get Long’s look at the premiere of 2005’s “Are We There Yet?”

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Going for a cut that matches her personality—sweet and sassy—Nia hits the red carpet in style at the 16th Annual Glamour Magazine Women of the Year awards in 2005. “When Nia rocked this super short and sexy hair cut, it oozed of strength, confidence and freedom,” says Andrea.

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“Taking a less-is-more approach to hair accessories, Nia wears a tiny thin black headband that makes a big statement at the 9th Annual Lili Claire Foundation Benefit. Her natural-looking waves can be achieved with a 1-inch or 1 1/2-inch curling iron. You’ll want to wrap hair around the curling iron in an upward motion. Don’t worry if you can’t curl the very ends—that is what gives the hair a natural look. If needed, don’t be afraid to add extensions for a extra length or body,” suggests Andrea.

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A sleek ponytail is classic and always in style. At Nickelodeon’s 20th Annual Kids’ Choice Awards, Nia went for a youthful look and added curls at the ends of the ponytail. Create volume at the crown for additional sophistication. Try using a root-lifting spray like Ion Vitalizing Root Lift, $5.79, sallybeauty.com, to dry hair for height.

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Red-carpet winner Nia Long knows how to pull out the stops when it comes to styling her mane. Her side-sweep curls look very soft and sexy at 38th Annual NAACP Image Awards. “A curling iron or a roller set will make this style last; a few hair pins can be used to hold the hair in place. Finish the look with a light holding spray,” says Andrea on nabbing Nia’s locks.

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“Curls are a great way to have fun with your hair and Nia wears it well at the “Premonition” premiere. Hair extensions that are wet, wavy and slightly layered are usually the best way to achieve this look. A very small curling iron works as well and don’t’ forget to use a hair polisher for great shine,” shares Andrea.

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Get Nia’s healthy and smooth-to-the-touch style by treating your tresses to Infusium 23 Repairologie, Leave-In Treatment ($6.99, drugstores) suggests Andrea, to help nourish and restore the hair’s texture and strengthen against damage.

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Nia goes for a classic crown French braid style at the 4th Annual Black Eyed Peas Foundation Benefit Concert held at Avalon Hollywood. We are feelin’ this look because it can be dressed up or down. Add a jeweled barrette or hair pin in the back of the do to make it your own look at home.

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There is something truly ageless about adding bangs to a hairstyle. Nia draws attention to her eyes and away from any fine lines on her forehead with this bold blunt cut bang at the Los Angeles premiere of “The Secret Life Of Bees” held at The Academy of Motion Arts & Sciences.

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Celebrity hairstylist Andrea, whose work has been featured not only on the New York runways, but in London, Paris and Milan, lent her magic touch to Nia Long’s tresses at the Heart’s Truth Red Dress Collection during New York Fashion Week fall 09 showcase. Andrea created soft, long, ringlet curls for the star to make her appear sleek and chic on the runway.

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