Occasion hair? Sorted! This is what happened when I had the BAFTA red carpet experience

Add some a-list sparkle to your next special occasion with top tips from the team at Paul Edmonds

So, an invite has dropped through the door – it’s you end of year prom or a cousin’s wedding – and your mind immediately turns to your hairstyle, outfit, make-up, the LOT. Before you know it, three hours have passed while you’ve been scrolling through Pinterest for inspiration. Striking the balance between ‘done’ and ‘undone’ can feel like an impossible task, so who better to show you the ropes when it comes to event hair than the very team behind the locks at the BAFTAs?

Paul Edmonds is the long-standing Official Hair Partner for the EE British Academy Film Awards, having created iconic hair looks for a huge range of actors and actresses – including Margot Robbie, Rami Malek and Emilia Clarke. Ahead of the 2020 awards, Layered Online’s Kelsey visited the BAFTA Style Suite to experience some star-studded styling for herself…

“On a day to day basis, I’ll always opt for straight(ish) hair as a time-saving solution during my morning routine. While I love the end result of Hollywood waves and cascading curls, the process to get there can be very lengthy with my thick tresses, but for a special occasion it’s always my style of choice.

At the Style Suite, I decided to opt for cool girl waves – the kind of look seen across the feeds of ‘Insta stars. After a quick blast of the hairdryer to add some volume at the roots, the Paul Edmonds team got to work in adding soft waves throughout my lengths and ends – the perfect option for effortless style. After curling quite tightly throughout, a dressing brush was used to tease each section out for a more natural finish, with just the right amount of texture.

It’s also worth noting that after each section was curled, it was left to free fall with no product used until the end. To avoid the finished style appearing too ‘done’, a dressing brush should always be your best friend, followed by a light-hold hairspray. To take the styling up a notch, we added a pearl headband for a little touch of glam. In case you didn’t already know, hair accessories have been big news for the past year and this doesn’t show any sign of stopping in 2020. After a quick spritz of Shu Uemura Art of Hair Sheer Lacquer, my fresh curls were firmly held in place – in fact they survived numerous trips on the underground, and were still good to go the next day!”

Across the BAFTA weekend, Paul and his team styled the tresses of some of the screen’s biggest names, including the young British stars set to take Hollywood. For Freya Allan, star of Netflix drama The Witcher, Paul decided to go for a more simple look to reflect her style and age. Freya’s long blonde locks were waved and tousled for a more natural finish, with longer side-fringe sections to help frame her face. As well as timeless waves, for 2020 Paul says we are seeing a “red carpet movement away from natural to controlled looks,” as sleek hair ups make a return. He adds: “The Hollywood look seems to really be hitting London for this year’s BAFTA. I’m seeing a lot of controlled hair styles with a soft but modern twist. It’s a movement of empowerment, showcasing controlled, empowered women, like with the return of the bob.” On the red carpet, actress Sophie Simnett was seen rocking a short and sleek bob, which was slightly flicked at the ends for a modern and younger take on the more straight and defined bob seen during 2019.

Freya Allen

Likewise, Amber Anderson’s tresses were styled into a soft yet modern up-do, with a gold chain running through for a fabulous finishing touch. Paul kept the look young and fresh to suit Amber by adding the hair accessory, with similar accessories worn by fellow starlets.

Amber Anderson
Sophie Simnett

For those feeling a little more daring, creative colour director at Paul Edmonds, Tracey Patterson, suggests there’s also a trend towards trying colour changes, with her advice being to “focus on the natural bases and your eye colour to ensure the finish is natural.” For golden blondes, Tracey says to use glazes to give iridescent colour and adaptability.

Whether you’re looking for a big style switch-up ahead of an important occasion or prefer to keep things natural with show-stopping accessories, it seems this year’s BAFTA inspiration has a little something for everyone! Now you just need the fierce AF outfit to match…