There's A Special Trick To Getting Zendaya's Perfect Topknot

Bronzy eyeshadow, kohl-rimmed eyes, a (seemingly) gravity-defying topknot — there was a lot to love about Zendaya's look at last night's 12th Annual CFDA Awards in New York City. After a little investigating, we learned two shocking facts: Zendaya did her own flawless makeup (!), and her topknot isn't actually a topknot.

"This is different from your usual bun that’s just wrapped around a ponytail," says celebrity hairstylist Jennifer Yepez, who created the look. Instead, it's an updo of sorts, with sections first curled, then twisted, piled, and pinned at the crown. Wait, what? Don't worry, we've got the full how-to below.
Photo: D Dipasupil/FilmMagic.
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“This is a look anyone at home can do, and it always looks great," Yepez says. To prep Zendaya's hair for the (not) bun, she layered Chi Total Protect, a heat-protectant spray, on the bottom half of her strands, then misted Chi Volume Booster from roots to tips. Starting at the nape of the neck, she blowdried the star's hair up toward the crown, using a boar-and-nylon mixture brush for added shine and smoothness. "I like to use a Mason Pearson brush to get the roots really flat," Yepez adds.

Yepez then brushed all of Zendaya's hair into a high pony and secured it with a bungee elastic. (Never tried one? Check out our tutorial here.) This provides a tighter finish and won't disrupt the hair by requiring it to be pulled through the elastic. "Once the hair was secured, I used a one-inch curling iron on medium sections to curl the hair and give it just a little bit of texture and movement," Yepez says. Once finished, she sprayed the pony with a copious amount of hairspray for grip.

This is different from your usual bun that’s just wrapped around a ponytail.

Hairstylist Jennifer Yepez
Here's the part you would probably never try at home: Instead of wrapping the hair around the base of the pony and into a bun, Yepez took small sections, scrunched and twisted them in her hands, and then pinned them to the base of the ponytail. Tip: Tuck the loose ends into the bun as you form it, and add a few more pins at the end just to be sure the entire updo is secure. For the finishing touch, "spray a small toothbrush with Enviro 54 Hair Spray Firm Hold to smooth flyaways and make sure it’s all super-sleek," Yepez says.

Loved Zendaya's makeup? (Seriously, girl, start a beauty blog for the rest of us.) You can find even more on her refreshing attitude toward beauty right here.
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