Get the look: Lorde's sleek and smooth hair
We usually assume celebs have naturally straight-ish hair, based on the sleek locks they always sport on the red carpet. But when Lorde ditches her trademark mass of ringlets, we know there's some serious beauty prep involved in achieving the look.
Think blowdrying plus ironing – and that double dose of heat can wreak havoc with hair. Curly hair hides damage and breakage well, but once strands are smoothed out this roughness may be visible.
Get hair in top shape first with a treatment mask – a new one I've just tried is L'Oréal Professionnel's ProFiber Collection Reconstruct Masque, $49.50. This smooths and softens impressively, and the results last through several washes (if you use the shampoo from the same range).
Gently towel-dry hair and then apply a heat protectant such as Redken Diamond Oil Glow Dry, $45, which will shield hair from heat damage while adding gloss. Blow dry hair in sections with a round brush – if you have very curly hair this can be a tedious process (you can't even watch TV due to the noise!). Try the new Remington Pro-Air Turbo dryer, $99.99, which has 2400 watts of power to speed the process, plus it comes with a brush (and a diffuser, should you want to go back to curls another time).
The final step is the ironing – but at least now you can break out your iPad and stream a show while you attend to this time-consuming chore. Depending on hair's condition and how much oil it can absorb without getting too shiny, you could apply another sparing dose of the Redken Diamond Oil Glow Dry (or other protective oil). Use an iron that's set to a safe temperature for hair integrity, such as the ghd Platinum, $360, which is set to 185 degrees. Anything higher and you resist scorching your strands.
Watch this video for more tips on flattening down thick, curly hair: