Whether thanks to diligent haircare or the TLC of stylist Frederic Aspiras, Lady Gaga’s real hair is in high-quality condition. In fact, the superstar apparently only wears wigs when she’s performing (whether by way of a musical performance or filming House of Gucci, for example).
Based on the superstar’s ever-changing looks, we thought for sure she utilized wigs on the reg, but Aspiras tells us otherwise. We caught up with him at a Joico-sponsored VIP screening of the buzzy flick at the London West Hollywood at Beverly Hills, where he dished on her strands on and off camera. Keep reading for our full Q+A!
Mane Addicts: Is there a type of wig that Gaga prefers in general?
Frederic Aspiras: In general, we use her own hair. We only used wigs for the characterization of the movie and for her pop performances. When you see her just going out in real life, that’s her own hair. It’s long and beautiful and blonde. And that’s with proper haircare. Joico’s Defy Damage is how we get it so blonde and white. Right before the movie started, she wanted to dye her hair brown, and I was like no, please don’t do this. But she wanted to get into the character, so she dyed her hair brown. To go from platinum blonde to brown is very hard, and we recently dyed it back to platinum blonde because that’s how she wanted it. Without Defy Damage, it wouldn’t be possible because her hair would all be burnt off.
MA: What goes into your general wig selection when styling?
FA: I design my wigs. This movie required 10 wigs that were handcrafted and hand-colored. They were styled with all Joico hair products because the look had to stay true to every decade—the ‘70s, the ‘80s and the ‘90s. The ‘70s were wet sets, hair rollers and light backcombing. The ‘80s were all about the power perm and the power blowout. It had to stay authentic to every detail. That’s what the movie required and that’s what Gaga wanted. It had to stay true to not just the movie, but to the real woman. When you see the real movie, it translates into that.
MA: What was the easiest or least challenging part about working with Lady Gaga on House of Gucci?
FA: I don’t think anything about it was easy because a lot of it had to do with preparation—months and months of preparation—with Gaga, Ridley Scott and [makeup artist] Sarah Tanno, of developing the characterization of Patrizia. It took hours of sitting down and creating the makeup looks and the hair, down to the costumes and even the nail polish. After the end of all that, we created a 400-500-page directory for the looks for Patrizia in the movie.
MA: How has this experience differed from working with Gaga on other projects?
FA: This is a film based on a story. It’s not about being a hairdresser. It’s about creating hairstyles for her as a vehicle, as an actress, to help facilitate telling the story. It’s not about showing off an amazing hairstyle from the ‘70s or ‘80s. It’s about her being able to tap into that vehicle to really develop the character. That’s my job to do that. That’s different than doing pop. With pop music, you’re trying to create the vibe. With Chromatica, we were just trying to create the world of Chromatica. It was completely different because it was about the visualization of the music. Her pop music is completely different from being an actress and telling a story.
MA: What’s been your proudest look to date?
FA: My proudest look to date is our recent London premiere look. She wore the most iconic, purple Gucci dress that she flung in the air. It looked like she came straight out of a painting. It was the most magical day ever. I created the most simplistic baby bang and soft bend at the end. It was the softest, cleanest hair that really transcended and depicted the style of the dress.
MA: What’s surprised you most about Gaga’s hair journey from a decade ago to now?
FA: What’s surprised me about her hair journey is her ability to rely on not just her hair. It’s more about what the message is behind the transformation and what the power of transformation is about. It’s not about shocking people. It’s about for yourself feeling happy and proud and comfortable with who you are. For her it’s about being happy where you are. Her hair feels more liberating. It feels more giving. It’s not just about selling you a song. It was never about that for her. For her it was about the truth of what she was about. My job isn’t about an ego and trying to create a hairstyle for my sake. It’s about telling her story.
Speaking of Lady Gaga’s hair looks, HERE are 22 of her wildest ones!