Ciara Hair Essence Festival LEAD
Credit: Josh Brasted/FilmMagic

A big night like Ciara’s performance on the closing day of the 22nd annual Essence Festival in New Orleans Sunday, calls for a sultry hairstyle that will shine just as bright as the 30-year-old singer’s set of platinum hits.

To ensure her style hit all the right notes, Ciara’s go-to hairstylist and Mizani Global Creative Director César Ramirez took the “I Bet” singer’s color up a few notches and didn’t shy away from volume and texture.

“Ciara’s stage show is my time to play with texture and length,” Ramirez told InStyle. “For Essence Fest, we went lighter. I added some bright balayaged blonde highlights. I also added a little length for some stage drama and sexiness.”

First, Ramirez applied a small amount of Mizani Iron Curl Heat Styling & Curling Cream ($17; throughout her mid-shafts down to her ends. This multitasking cream protects strands against heat styling, boosts shine, and adds definition.

To create Caira’s effortlessly sultry, bouncy waves, Ramirez turned to his trusty One Styling Tools Flat Iron ($240; and used the tool in small sections to create beachy waves all over. His pro tip: “Remember to wave every piece in a different direction for a very natural finish.”

As a finishing touch, Ramirez spritzed Mizani HRM Humidity Resistant Mist ($17; all-over Ciara’s strands right before she hit the stage to keep the style’s shape full and not fuzzy as she killed it onstage. Talk about a body party indeed.