There’s a lot about Janelle Monáe to admire. Along with her music, acting, and strong feminist stance, we can’t stop thinking about the recent set of epic hairstyles she’s been rocking throughout promoting the film Hidden Figures, and on this year’s award show red carpets.
The creative ways that these looks make use of unorthodox hair accessories puts our barrettes to shame. They’re the work of Monáe’s longtime stylist hair magician Nikki Nelms. The pro, who also works with Solange Knowles and Zoë Kravitz, draws inspiration from the items in the bottom of her kit to turn objects we’ve always relied on for our arts and crafts projects into unique ways to give Monáe’s go-to styles like top-knots and buns, an edgy twist.
Who would have thought a haul from Michael’s Arts and Crafts store could look so chic? We’ve rounded all of the times Monáe’s hair accessories were better than ours.
1. Put A Pin On It
Usually when a bobby pin is sticking out of our hair, our inital instinct is to immediately try to conceal it. Next time, take a cue from Monáe by embracing this common styling struggle. Nelms accessorized the star's red carpet look by scattering pins throughout her double buns.
2. Not Your Mother's Pearls
Pearls can have a bad rep for being dated, but when sprinkled throughout a high top-knot like Monáe's on the 2017 Golden Globes red carpet, the gemstone looks sophisticated and completely modern.
3. Twisted Top-Knot
Now this is how you do a top-knot with a twist. Nelms wove gold wire throughout Monáe's bun to turn it into a museum-worthy, sculptural work of art.
4. Eye-Conic Buns
All eyes were (literally) on the double buns that Monáe wore for her appearances on NBC’s Today and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon to promote her role in the film Hidden Figures.
5. Golden Braided Pigtails
Leave it to Nelms to turn the style we usually reserve for days when we can't even with our hair into a walking work of art. And with just a few inches of wire, the pro struck gold.
6. Pin-Worthy Bun
Here's how you hold a look together: The safety pin-bedazzled updo that Nelms gave Monáe for a party she attended at the Palm Springs International Film Festival showed us that when used in an unexpected way, even the most mundane objects can be beautiful.