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One to Watch: Madison Pettis Embraces Her Natural Coils and Wants You to Do the Same

Ashley Locke

Mar 24, 2021

Madison Pettis has grown up right before our very eyes. Madison’s career is nothing short of legendary, working with heavy hitters like The Rock, Miley Cyrus, and Will Smith. Now, she’s taking centerstage and making a name for herself with roles in Netflix’s He’s All That, Five Points and American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rule.

Many of us will never forget her iconic role as the spunky 9-year-old in The Game Plan starring alongside The Rock. But years later, the now 22-year-old is all grown up and continues to shine in every role she takes on. It was the perfect opportunity to put her back on your radar as our latest One to Watch – these photos are proof that Madison oozes swag and sex appeal all at the same time, with gorgeous natural coils to boot.

What we love most about this budding beauty is her confidence, authenticity, charm, and of course — those signature curls of hers. Obviously, celebrity hairstylist Irinel de León had to showcase Madison’s gorgeous ringlets during our photoshoot at Mane Addicts HQ in Los Angeles where she styled up three looks that serve.

We got up close and personal with Madison (at a safe distance and double masked up, of course) to create these stunning looks at the shoot, learn all about her relationship with her curls, and more. We’ll take you through each look, which include Irinel’s step-by-steps on how to achieve them yourself. Keep scrolling to see Madison like you’ve never seen her before!

WAC (Wet and Curly)

We’re really starting to question why we don’t leave the house with wet hair more often. “I love the heavy side part with the finger wave detail and accentuated baby hairs,” Madison mentions of this sleek and edgy style, and she certainly makes the case for it with this editorial look. She even encourages us to do just that, noting that this is the perfect style to sport when you’re running late and need to get out of the house. If only we looked this good, *le sigh.* While this style tends to be more editorial and fashion forward, it’s perfect for girls with curly coils — Irinel break’s it down.

Irinel’s Wet Curls Breakdown:

  • Wet hair down with a spray bottle
  • Create a side part and apply gel to the right side part and create a finger wave
  • Secure finger waves with duckbill clips in the grooves, so it holds
  • Using a diffuser, hover over the finger wave section to allow it to dry
  • Wet down any areas of the hair that have dried

Mane Addicts: How would you describe your relationship with your curls?

Madison Pettis: I love my curls! They’re my signature look and I really feel the most myself when I rock my natural texture.

MA: What do you love most about your coils?

MP: Curly hair is so unique! Everyone’s curl pattern and texture is beautiful and different. My hair is like no one else’s and that’s special.

MA: How has the pandemic altered your glam routine?

MP: It’s been very low-maintenance these days, because I spent a lot of time at home. Mostly, I’ve just been throwing my hair up in a bun and calling it a day.

MA: How do your styling choices empower you?

MP: Unfortunately, people with curly hair are often told they should just straighten it, which really bothers me, because curly hair is so beautiful. I think embracing our natural curls is a bold statement.

90s Half-Up Twist

Madison’s curls came out to play in this fun and flirty half-up half-down style, which is a look she’s a big fan of. “This would be a perfect everyday go-to style. I love the half-up half-down look.”

Her coils look “snatched,” with her natural texture on full display. Those curls are angelic, ethereal, something most people strive to achieve, but often fall short. You know what they say, the bigger the hair, the closer to god. And Madison is definitely an angel that struts among us with the most stunning ringlets we ever did see.

Irinel’s Half-Up Half-Down Breakdown:

MA: Do you have any major hair regrets?

MP: I once went seven years without getting a haircut or even a trim. I had a really traumatizing haircut when I was 12. The hairstylist cut it way shorter than I wanted, so it took me seven years to get the courage to get it cut again. Pro tip: make sure you get a cut from someone who specializes in curly hair and cuts your hair while it’s dry. They should cut each individual ringlet while it’s dry, so you can see exactly how much is coming off. If they cut it wet, it’s hard to gauge the length because the curls shrink up so much once it’s dry.

MA: What’s one style you’ve always wanted to try, but haven’t yet?

MP: I really want to try braids! I have so many inspo pics saved, but I haven’t done it yet. Maybe for the next festival season, whenever that may be.

MA: What are your go-to hair products?

MP: I’m currently loving Aussie Miracle Curls Shampoo & Conditioner, Unite 7 Second Detangler to help comb it out after I wash it, and I finish with Garnier Fructis Curl Nourish Air Dry Butter Cream, which has been my favorite leave-in conditioner for years. 

MA: What does your haircare routine look like?

MP: I keep it pretty simple. I wash it usually two to three times a week. Washing it every day is too harsh and dries it out. The other days, I use a spray bottle to fully wet it down, I use a wide-tooth comb to detangle, and then apply leave-in conditioner. I also use a microfiber towel, which helps dry it without making it frizzy, and usually I just let it air dry. Sometimes, I diffuse, if I don’t have time to let it air dry.

Everyone’s curl pattern and texture is beautiful and different. My hair is like no one else’s and that’s special.

Madison Pettis

Bad Ass & Beautiful

Serving volume on volume, Madison exudes major boss vibes with this half cornrows hairstyle. Describing the look as “funky and strong,” she notes that this would be a great party look.

“I would wear this to a party, if I knew how to do this myself,” says the actress. Thankfully, Irinel shares the breakdown of the hairstyle, which is fairly easy to pull off, especially if you already know how to braid cornrows.

One of the best parts about this style is that it’s unique to every type of curl pattern and texture. Just as Madison encourages, this is the perfect look to embrace your individual curl style.

Irinel’s Cornrows Look Breakdown:

  • Create a part from the back of the ear and clip away
  • Create diagonal parts and separate using duckbill clips
  • Apply an edge control to sections and create braids, securing with rubber band
  • Apply edge control to baby hairs and, using an edge brush, create designs around hairline

MA: Who is your hairstyle icon?

MP: Beyoncé has had so many amazing and iconic curly hair looks.

MA: What’s a misconception people have about your strands that you’d like to debunk?

MP: Sometimes, there’s a negative perception of curly hair—that it’s frizzy or unmanageable and needs to be tamed by straightening it. All you really need are the right products that work best for your specific curl texture. Not all curly hair is the same. Some people have a coarse or thick texture and need products with heavier moisture. My curls need a lighter conditioner. If I use something too heavy, my hair ends up looking greasy and weighed down. It takes some experimenting to find the products that are right for you.

MA: What can we expect from you in the future?

MP: I recently finished filming a new movie called He’s All That [that also stars our December 2020 Mane Muse Addison Rae] which is a reboot of the iconic ‘90s movie She’s All That. You’ll be able to watch me in that later this year.

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