Love her or hate her, Cersei Lannister is definitely a force to be reckoned with on Game of Thrones. Although she was shamed into swapping her trademark braids for a pixie at the end of last season (mild spoiler, sorry), the hairpiece has allowed actress Lena Headey to get pretty experimental with her strands IRL. “When she’s playing Cersei, Lena wears a wig on the set, so she’s always in the hair trailer changing up her look,” her hairstylist Mark Townsend said at Dove’s Love Your Hair panel in New York City. “She’s been a few different colors and switches up her length a lot, and that’s what I love about her. She’ll try anything.” As luck would have it, Cersei is just as cunning in the salon chair as she is holding down the fort at King’s Landing, and inspired the elegant updo Townsend created for the Game of Thrones premiere with a totally unexpected look she wore to their styling session.
Back in 2014, Headey chopped her brunette strands into a pixie, and she’s been gracefully growing out the style over the past year, resulting in the chin-length look she’s currently rocking. “She’s just gotten to the point where she can put her hair in a tiny ponytail, and she showed up wearing one just before the premiere,” said Townsend. “I liked it a lot and sort of took what she had and reworked it into a faux updo by anchoring it with a few hairpins. She loved the look and said she had never felt so beautiful, but I was like, ‘This was your idea! This was all you!'” According to Townsend, Headey will sometimes skip out on the red carpet, but she was feeling her updo so much, she let the photographers get every angle of the look. Well played, Cersei. Well played.