With a deep billowy voice that combines everything from soul, pop, rock & roll, R&B, and new wave, Ivy Levan is the manifestation of every major female icon (in both beauty and talent) mixed together. Self described as “the love child that was produced from an orgy consisting of Morticia Addams, Lucille Ball, Angelina Jolie, and Pee Wee Herman,” Ivy is dark, edgy, eclectic, and animated. She describes her personal style as “sophisticated, sexy, fun, and different. All those adjectives are relative to each individual listed in said love child orgy,” she explains with a wink.
With stark silver strands that demand attention, it was imperative that Ivy be our Mane Muse. And the perfect man for the job was none other than hair guru Clyde Haygood. “Ivy Levan is a dream client and absolutely stunning,” he raves. “I first saw her just over a year ago and was mesmerized! I’ve been dying to work with her since, but she’s such a loyal person and has been working with an amazing team, including the brilliant Abreea Loren Saunders for years! I felt there was no way for me to meet her and collaborate until this!”
“What I love about my job is being able to help create the images for iconic pop stars. I’ve worked with Katy Perry, Demi Lovato, Gwen Stefani, Shakira, Nicole Richie, and Paris Hilton (to name a few). I feel most fulfilled as an artist when I’m working with talent on their photos, videos and performance pieces. After seeing Ivy, I knew I had to work with her!”
While they had never worked together before, Clyde and Ivy are a match made in heaven. “We had been insta-stalking each other for quite some time,” says Ivy. “Honestly, we fan girled real hard over each other when we finally got to meet in real life! Usually Abreea styles my hair, but today it is Clyde The Hair God,” she laughs as Clyde starts prepping her hair.
Ivy’s first look channeled her ethereal ‘Swamp Princess’. “Ivy’s hair is a gorgeous silver- blonde color,” says Clyde. “I wanted to give her a mysterious, spooky quality by playing with what she already has.” Fortunately, Ivy was open arms to the varying shades of pewter in Clyde’s arsenal. “I custom dyed several shades of silver and grey hair extensions to extend her length and give her a multi-dimensional hue. We used Oribe Dry Texture Spray (my favorite!) to give her hair a real chunky quality. We joked at the shoot and came up with the name ‘Swamp Princess’.”
The second look was all about disco texture. “We call this look Dame Disco Diva, because Ivy is a diva, in all the best ways!” Clyde admits. Clyde powdered a fall (which was attached in the back for added width and fullness) with Mehron Metallic Powder for the perfect color. He then took ultra small sections coated with Oribe Soft Lacquer Heat Spray and twisted around a 3/8 inch curling iron. After releasing the curl from the iron, he stretched it with his fingers to soften. Once the entire head was finished, he used a good coat of Elnett Hairspray and brushed through with a Mason Pearson brush. While shooting, he used a fan to give the hair it’s airiness.
“My favorite look from the day was definitely the curly hurricane of hair! I love it because it’s so different for me and I like adventure,” says Ivy who’s always willing to embrace a new look. Wondering if this hair chameleon will be sticking to her signature platinum tresses for long? “I’ve had black, brown, red, orange, pink, purple, etc. you name it and I’ve had it on my head. I pay tribute to a few of those past looks in my “Biscuit” music video. If I ever experiment it will be back to black. I really miss her mystery. But for now this blonde is having way too much fun.”
Next, Clyde gave Ivy a gravity defying bondage pony. To create the look, “I took Ivy’s hair into an ultra tight ponytail. I wrapped silver extensions around her own hair and took Bondage Tape (yes, from The Pleasure Chest) and wrapped it around the base. The tape gave a patent-leather shine that makes this look so dramatic. On set, I created a wind tornado to bring her pony to life. This look is stunning on Ivy and highlights her beautifully futuristic features.”
At the end of the day, Clyde and Ivy were glowing with mutual admiration. “Together we are a couple of southern belles raisin’ hell! I just adore every bit of Clyde!” she gushes, “He’s so ahead of the curve and not afraid to take chances and I admire that. He really is the hair god. When I have a vision he always gives 200% to make sure the fantasy is brought to life. On top of it all he’s just a hoot to be around!”
So could Ivy see herself in any of these looks again? “Yes all of them!” she says, “If I have the helping hands of God/Clyde of course!”
“This shoot has been a total gift,” Clyde reminisces, “I’ve finally been paired with my muse and got a chance! I’ve been working with her ever since and her long time stylist, Abreea has totally embraced me. We’ve since collaborated on many different projects and taken Ivy’s look to another level. This shoot was such a blast and was the start of a beautiful relationship. Thanks Mane Addicts!”
Be sure to check out Ivy’s album, No Good, featuring her hit single ‘Biscuit’ which releases this Friday!
Muse: Ivy Levan @ivylevan
Hair: Clyde Haygood @clydehairgod
Photos: Mike Rosenthal @mrmikerosenthal
Makeup: Amber Dreadon @amberdmakeup
Stylist: Brett Nelson @brettalannelson
Video: Dave Lang @thedavelang
Art Direction: Desirae Cherie @desiraecherie
Producer: Andrea Berk @aaahndrea
Written by: Justine Marjan @justinemarjan