Monday, May 7, 2012

Oprah's Stylist Andre Walker Talks Hair

While most wish they had Oprah's wealth, many also covet the media mogul's gorgeous mane. For over 25 years, hairstylist Andre Walker has made sure that the talk show trailblazer's tresses are always camera-ready.

Now, with the help of his haircare line, Make Peace With Your Hair, we can all get a taste of one of Lady O's many luxuries.

I recently caught up with the stylist to talk natural hair, humidity, and his favorite Oprah 'do. 

Walker styling Oprah's lovely locks on set.

Check out the Q&A:

What are your thoughts about the natural hair revolution amongst women of color that seems to be sweeping the country? 
"I’m happy to see women make peace with their hair. I believe it came about because women of color want more freedom than they get going straight. Going natural you can swim and exercise without the worries of wetting your straight style. Not to mention that all of the processes of straightening (chemical, pressing, blowdrying) are all very damaging when not done correctly.

Now what is needed are great products and expert care for natural hair, which is very fragile due to coarse texture and dryness. It is important to keep your ends trimmed, and get salon-quality deep conditioning into the hair. I created my TKO Deep Conditioning Keratin Treatment for all hair that needs moisture infusion. I am also developing new products that will respond to the needs of natural hair in a way we've never experienced before, so stay tuned!"

What advice do you have for someone who wants to transition from relaxed strands to non-processed tresses?
"The best way to transition is the BIG CHOP. If you are courageous and ready, this is the best way. To gradually change - you can continue blow-drying your hair straight until it becomes too difficult to continue this type of styling, or the relaxed hair starts to break. By doing the later, you must condition, condition and condition."

Now that spring is in full swing and summer is rapidly approaching, what are some of your tips for avoiding the dreaded "poof" during wet and humid weather? 
"There aren’t many ways to avoid the “poof." Humidity is straight hair’s biggest enemy. During this type of weather the best style is one that is natural. If your hair is relaxed, don’t try to style it as usual. Try pulling it up in to a cool pony or ballerina’s knot. You can add hair to your pony to make it longer and more fun or make a messy knot for a more updated ballerina."

Of your haircare products, what's the most universal for all hair types? 
"All of my products can be used by all. Everyone needs a good shampoo and conditioner. My TKO is an intensive conditioning mask that is perfect for a little extra care. My Q Oil is loved by people with very straight hair to aid with styling, to those with kinky hair to add shine and lock in moisture."

You've created countless hairstyles for Oprah Winfrey, but what's your personal favorite look for her?
"My favorite changes all the time. I love her hair curly and I love her most recent long luxurious loose wavy look. We just shot the cover for September O, The Oprah Magazine where I gave her a completely new look that may be my new favorite. You’ll have to wait to see the cover because I can’t reveal it."

What do you think is the single most important key to the maintaining healthy hair? 
"The single most important key to healthy hair is very basic:
1. Shampoo regularly - never go more than a week without shampooing at least once.
2. Condition after every shampoo and do a deep conditioning treatment at least once a month.
3. Get regular cuts/shaping every 6 to 8 weeks to do away with any split damaged ends and to keep your style."

If you missed my post on his Q Oil, click here for a full review. Also for more haircare tips from Andre Walker be sure to check out:

Whose hair do you admire the most in Hollywood?


Steel Heels said...

Oh wow!!! You actually got it from the horse's mouth!! I will definitely trying his products. Lady O's hair is always jaw dropping! As for my would be OPRAH!!

Brown Girl Gumbo said...

His products really are great!! I'm in love with the Q-Oil! You should definitely try them out.

that guy said...

great interview!