We can’t blame you for doing a triple-check when you spotted Top Chef host and foodie author Padma Lakshmi on the red carpet at the 2017 Emmy Awards.
Yup, that’s her, showing off a sleek, sexy, on-point new bob, courtesy of her hairstylist Jeanie Syfu. The reason for the major change-up is simple: Lakshmi was ready to chop off her long waves for something more effortless and easy, after wearing a faux-bob on a few episodes of Chef to test the waters, so to speak.
“I suggested going shorter and she went for it,” Syfu tells Allure. “I helped design the cut, but a stylist did it in New York. [Lakshmi] liked the idea of having short hair.”
The new is a long bob that’s “really shaggy,” says Syfu. “She likes the movement of it,” says the stylist. “She was worried about not having styling options, but it styles itself. It’s about having a statement cut. This looks confident and memorable.”
Lakshmi is savoring her new cut. “I chose this style because I wanted something short, shaggy, and totally different. I wanted something a bit Joan Jett, or Pat Benatar, a bit punky,” Lakshmi tells Allure. “I know it sounds silly, but when I was a really little girl, those were the first touchstones of liberated female rockers I noticed. They seemed wild and sexy and raw. They owned their own power. I always thought those types of short, choppy haircuts were ultra-sexy but I never had the nerve.”
In fact, she’s been thinking of hacking off her locks for a while now, but “I’ve always chickened out. And I just thought it’s now or never. I’ve just finished filming the latest season of Top Chef and since I’m in-between seasons I felt it would be an opportune time.”
Why now, you might ask? Actually, why not?
“I’ve always had long hair, and I felt it was time to try something I’ve wanted to do for a long while. I loved my long hair and how feminine it made me feel, but there’s another side to me that’s been dying to come out for years now. And so I thought it was time to let that girl out of her cage,” says Lakshmi.
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