20 Hours In the Life of a Celebrity Hairstylist During the Oscars

(Oscars Diary)

The day of the Oscars is one of the busiest (and craziest) for a celebrity hairstylist—like Adir Abergel, who worked his magic to style the tresses of Charlize Theron, Saiorse Ronan and more. He gives us an inside glimpse at his day and how he gets it done (hint: an amazing team and little sleep).

6:30am Look at my phone. Take 5 minutes to stretch, and my dog Dudu licks my face for a few minutes.

7:00am My favorite human, my husband, made me coffee, and we walk Dudu around the block.


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7:45am Put on moisturizing face mask, use Jillian Dempsey’s Goldbar to de-puff my face and use some concealer so I don’t look like I’m half alive. Get dressed in comfy clothes. A little bit of Le Labo Santal, and I’m ready to go.

8:15am My dream team arrives at my Hair Factory LA: Eduardo, Lori, Arbana, Luly and most importantly, my manager Marcelo. We go over the game plan for the day, pull some extensions, pull some hair accessories, do some social posts for my Allure takeover and educate people about some Virtue Labs haircare products.  

10:00am We hop in the car to head to the hotel of my first client, Oscar nominee Saoirse Ronan, for an 11am call time. The glam team has two hours to set-up, cut hair, do makeup, do nails and then head to the next client.

11:00am Arrive at Saoirse’s hotel and everyone from glam is there, from fashion stylist Elizabeth Salzman, to Kara Yoshimoto Bua doing makeup to the whole Gucci crew.  I had a clear idea in my head of where I was thinking of going with the hair, but since the Gucci team was there with the dress, I had Saoirse try it on so I can see it on her for the first time. I was in love immediately, and the vision in my brain was about to come alive. She sat in my chair, and the new micro bangs inspired by Audrey Hepburn were happening in real time. I pulled the rest of her back into a little chignon and put a beautiful diamond and emerald bee in her hair. I gave her a big kiss and ran to client #2.

1:30pm Client #2 is my boo Charlize Theron. I was definitely stressing out on the way because there were 17 accidents in the rain, and traffic was not moving. So, a few deep breaths before walking into her house, and I was ready to go. Only 20 minutes late.

For Charlize, we created quite a minimal look that was sleek and shiny and had a really beautiful deep side part. Because Charlize’s hair is quite short, I had to add extensions to both sides of the hair, and that sparked an idea in my brain to create a hand-made accessory to complete the look. Let me tell you about it. I took the extensions that were placed on either side of her head, kept them long and wrapped black twine around them and connected them together creating a half moon halo sitting at the nape of the neck.  Everyone loved it and so did I and we sent her off to the Oscars, only 10 minutes late!

4:45pm All packed up—ate a little bit of pasta that Charlize ordered for me, watched a little bit of the red carpet and ready to go to see my Maria Sharapova. A little secret I want to tell you: I’d planned to check on my client Taylor Russell to see how my vision of doing boho braids all over her head was going and realized I could only FaceTime and not go in person.

5:30pm Arrive at Maria’s hotel, again, 10 minutes late because of LA traffic. Run to her room. Of course, she’s in the last room on the top floor. My assistants Arbana and Luly are now both with me. One is helping me with social while the other is unpacking for me to start on Maria. During this time, I’m explaining to Maria what I was thinking of doing with her hair and dancing a little bit to entertain everyone in the room. We do her hair in a modern updo that feels cool and sexy with a little detail in the back. She loves it. And off I go to the next client—now only 20 minutes late because a valet took literally 20 minutes to get my car.

7:30pm Ok, just to give you a little perspective...The night before, Taylor and I came up with a very cool idea for her Chanel dress. We decided to create boho braids that were past her hips but the catch was she would have to sit for 7 hours straight to get them done. She agreed, and I’m sure wanted to kill me the entire time. I got to Taylor’s room, and I was so happy to see our vision alive thanks to my friend Noelle Angelic, the best braider in LA. Now, to take this look and elevate it for a red carpet moment, I threw her hair up into double knots at the top of her head, leaving a few braids cascading around her face and creating a really cool half-up, half-down hair vibe.  She put on her Chanel dress—I loved that we made the right decision.

9:30pm Ordered a gin and tonic and a Belgian chocolate 17-layer cake, or something like that, to the room.  Ate it in one bite and was happy again.

10:45pm Charlize was back from the Oscars with her mom, her publicist Amanda Silverman, and her friend Kazu Hiro, who had just won an Oscar for best hair and makeup on Bombshell. Immediately, we just hung out, had fun and laughed and celebrated Kazu. I then did a touchup on Charlize before she left for the Vanity Fair party, and I quickly dragged myself to my car to go home.

12:00am Definitely turned into a pumpkin, but at least my assistants didn’t turn into mice.  Arrived back at the studio with my dream team for a late night catch-up session. We talk about the day and how proud I was of everyone’s contribution and also prepared for my Entertainment Tonight and Access Hollywood segments in 6 hours.

2:00am Everyone’s gone, I’ve taken a shower, and I'm ready to dream before being up in 3 hours to head to Entertainment Tonight to be on a panel about Oscars.