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Naomi Osaka has long been a sartorial trailblazer within the world of tennis, stunning on red carpets for almost as long as she’s been a household name as a four-time Grand Slam winner. And she didn’t hold back at the 2021 Met Gala on Monday night, paying homage to her Haitian and Japanese heritage as part of this year’s theme, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion.”
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The Met Gala co-chair (who chaired the festivities with Billie Eilish, Amanda Gorman and Timothée Chalamet) channeled a custom look created by Nicolas Ghesquière for Louis Vuitton, imprinted with a design of koi fish inspired by a water painting made by her older sister Mari Osaka. But the real star of overall fashion moment was her show-stopping, architectural hairstyle, made possible by hairstylist Marty Harper. Thick braids jutted out from atop her ahead in a twisting updo, while the rest of her hair flanked her head in symmetrical blade-like fans. Embellished with red flowers and sparkly gems, the star tennis player’s hairdo was a Met-worthy look all on its own.
“The look is all about cross-pollinated conversation of culture, fashion and homage, cognizant of youth, fantasy and a new American – a new us,” Marty Harper said about Osaka’s coiffure in a statement. “The story is embodied in hair and its structure. We drew inspiration from Haitian school girl style and onna-musha warriors of Japan.”
So, how exactly did Harper construct the look? Aside from his years as an acclaimed celebrity stylist, who’s worked with clients such as Zendaya, Halsey and Janelle Monae, he also swears by certain products by Tokyo-based haircare company NatureLab that made Monday night’s look possible.
NatureLab Smooth Blowout Lotion
Harper says he prepped her hair with NatureLabs Smooth Blowout Lotion, a lightweight smoothing serum which works to detangle and separate tresses while also creating a protective sheath around each strand before applying heat. He followed up with the Dyson Supersonic hair dryer, blowing out her hair in one-inch sections.
NatureLab Tokyo Perfect Smooth Hair Oil
He continued with NatureLab’s Smooth Hair Oil, applying the moisturizing serum from the mid-shaft through the ends. The deeply penetrating blend is made with argan, boabab and marula oils, serving as the perfect tamer before taking in half-inch sections of hair and pressing them with the Dyson Corrale hair straightener.
Shine Oil Mist
A mix of the Smooth Hair Oil and Shine Oil Mist is how he smoothly sectioned her hair from ear to ear for a perfectly symmetrical split. The Platinum Fiber-infused light-reflecting mist enhances color and elevates shine. Antioxidant-rich stem cells from Grape protect against oxidative damage, while plant oils and butters provide a moister to guard against dryness.
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