Rita Ora's Hairstylist on the Secret to Slicked-Back Strands

Photo: Erik Madigan Heck

From Alexander Wang to Marni, the wet-hair look was all over the spring runways, but we haven't seen anyone conquer the tricky style better than Rita Ora inside the March issue of InStyle (currently available on newsstands and for digital download). "The wet look is definitely one of my favorites right now," Ora told us as she posed for our fashion feature. "I should just always wear my hair slicked-back."

The singer, who has continued to rock the style since she got her pre-Grammys crop, relies on hair stylist Chris Appleton to perfect her locks. At our shoot, Appleton first used a blow dryer to get a smoother texture and also to flatten Ora's hair slightly. Then he worked Oribe Gel Serum ($59; oribe.com) through the roots to provide volume that is not too crispy. "Volume is key to this look," says Appleton. "If the roots don't go away from your face, the hair will just look greasy."

Next, Appleton used his fingers to brush Sachajuan Leave-In Conditioner ($30; barneys.com) from the middle to the ends of strands. The formula is "perfect and not too creamy," he says. For a glossy finish, he used Shu Uemura Essence Absolue Nourishing Protective Oil ($69; shuuemeraartofhair-usa.com) to keep everything looking flexible. One bonus? "These products are extremely nourishing for your hair," he says, "and Rita pulls it off so well!"

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