When Rihanna took on the role of a hacker named Nine Ball in her upcoming Ocean’s 8 movie, she wanted her character to be an unapologetic girl from the islands.
That decision was clear from her choice to rock faux locs, a style that her hairstylist says was an intentional decision for the role.
“We thought it would be strong,” her longtime hairstylist Yusef Williams told Refinery29. “Her locs would maintain that tie to Africa. She’d keep her accent. She wasn’t just going to be some American girl in this movie. Nine Ball is still a Caribbean girl that just happens to be in America.”
Rihanna debuted the look in 2016 while she was shooting the film alongside Cate Blanchett and Sandra Bullock.
“All in all, the locs are just really badass,” Williams says. “I couldn’t imagine her character without them.”
Ocean’s 8 debuts in theaters on June 8, 2018.