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Rihanna’s Hairstylist Addresses Backlash Over Singer’s Doobie Wrap

Jason Kempin, Getty Images

Aside from winning the first-ever Icon Award at the 2013 American Music Awards, Rihanna also garnered attention for her unique hairstyle. The R&B songbird wore her hair in a doobie wrap — a style typically worn by African-American or Hispanic women at home to preserve straight hair.

Reactions to RiRi’s ‘do were mixed as spotlighted by the HuffPost. Some considered it a fashion faux pas while others praised it as trailblazing.

Leave it to Rihanna to keep them guessing.

In an interview with Elle, Rihanna’s hairstylist, Ursula Stephen, said that the singer wasn’t trying to stir up controversy with the style.

“It was actually Rihanna’s idea,” she tells the website. “She had her mind made up. Honestly, I was a little hesitant but I knew she could pull it off, so I was all for it.”

“I knew it would get a reaction but I wasn’t sure if it would be positive or negative,” she continued. “A doobie on the red carpet has never been done before so I knew it could have gone either way.”

Stephen also explained that the wrap’s roots date back to the 1930s, and Rihanna was simply giving a nod to Old Hollywood fashion.

As for the backlash, Stephen shrugs it off.

“Everyone has an opinion. However, the doobie has been worn to Bergdorf Goodman,” she says. “They just haven’t been paying attention. And it’s been around since the ’30s. Part of my job is to know eras, trends and fashion, and to keep looks alive by adding a modern twist.”

She adds, “As an artist, you can’t take yourself too seriously. It’s about evolving, having fun, feeling beautiful and letting the look interpret the feeling, mood and the music!”

Jason Merritt, Getty Images

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