Yesterday in Washington D.C., Oprah Winfrey was one of 16 recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, presented by President Barack Obama — a momentous occasion and accomplishment for anyone, not just the queen of daytime TV. Why so significant? It’s the highest civilian honor in the United States, recognizing people who have contributed to the country in areas like national security, world peace, or culture. Oprah’s fellow recipients included former President Bill Clinton, feminist icon Gloria Steinam, and storied country music singer Loretta Lynn.
But just as we laud Oprah for her amazing achievement, we also give two thumbs up to her hairstylist, Andre Walker, for her fantastic blowout at the event. We asked him how the chic style came together: “For a special, historic event like this, Oprah and I prefer a classic look,” he told InStyle.com. “Every woman should remember that special occasions will be photographed, and years later, it is better to look timeless rather than trendy in the photos. This style is Oprah’s curly hair shampooed, conditioned, and blown straight with my Gold System,” a hair care system for naturally kinky hair.
You can get the look at home using Walker’s system, or a combination of store-bought products. Because heat styling can take a toll on your strands, we recommend using a hydrating deep conditioner with a thermal protectant spray before picking up the dryer. If a DIY blowout ends up being more like an intense workout for your arms, streamline the process by rough-drying your hair until 75 percent of the water is removed, then go back and smooth over individual areas with a round brush, which helps you achieve that coveted curl. This way, you’ll be able to focus on perfecting the look, rather than getting your strands dry enough to hold a curl. Need more guidance on achieving the look on your own? Follow these five steps to score a glam blowout at home.