DIY: 'Game of Thrones'-inspired hairstyles for day and night

"Game of Thrones" characters HBO
You too can look just as glamorous as "Game of Thrones" characters Sansa Stark or Daenerys Targaryen.

If (like most good Americans) you are obsessed with "Game of Thrones," then you are likely equally enamored of the Funny or Die parody of the HBO show: "Gay of Thrones."

The hit Web series, now in its second season, features real-life hairstylist and pop culture aficionado Jonathan Van Ness sashaying, emoting and venting and on all the drama, nudity and "fierceness" of the fictional characters, whom he lovingly refers to as "Christina Aguilera" (Daenerys Targaryen) and "blonde Cher" (Cersei Lannister). The hilarious episodes have made an internet star of Van Ness, who is now often stopped on the street by fans asking for selfies, which he is all too happy to provide. 

"Oh, I so enjoy it," he confessed. "You never wanna be that girl who’s too busy for a picture."

Van Ness did indeed start out as a hairstylist — and continues to be one high in demand in L.A. — but he's grown to accommodate his new acting profession. “I looove being in front of the camera,” he said, adding that his favorite episodes are those in which he gets to "stomp or model walk."

Funny or Die director Erin Gibson and "Gay of Thrones" star Jonathan Van Ness TODAY
Funny or Die director Erin Gibson and "Gay of Thrones" star Jonathan Van Ness pose at their salon studio.

It would not be an exaggeration to say that TODAY newsroom staffers squeal each time a new "Gay of Thrones" episode is live, so it with great honor that we bring you a DIY tutorial, straight from Van Ness' makeshift salon, which is aptly called Cersei (in reality, it's a set at the Funny or Die studios).

His model is his director, Funny or Die's Erin Gibson, who convinced Van Ness to go public with his NSFW TV recaps after enjoying them herself in his salon chair. “Erin knows to make me so funny," Van Ness gushed. "She’s the Usher to my Justin Bieber.”

Behold, the duo demonstrate how to master a Westeros look for both day and night:

Look no. 1: Daytime

Thisis a great summer option, when you need to keep your hair out of your face, but want to keep it a little romantic and festive in case you have some poorly executed royal wedding to attend.


1. Channel your inner Sansa and just keep still while someone works your hair into small, separate braids, making sure there are two separate braids deliberately in the front.

      TODAY                         Rina Raphael / TODAY
             TODAY                  Rina Raphael / TODAY

2. Need some help in the hair department? So do most of "Game of Thrones" cast, who rely on weaves, braids and whole lotta of the fake good stuff. Van Ness knows this: "Every girl’s gotta have a little bit of weave."

 TODAY                     TODAY

Just keep braiding. "Go full on Pippi Longstocking," urges Van Ness.

TODAY                    Rina Raphael / TODAY
TODAY                        Rina Raphael / TODAY

3. Once you’ve finished braiding, group the back braids — minus the front two — and combine them into one big braid. Intimidated? Don’t be. Van Ness likens his work to that of Rachael Ray. “You don’t have to do it exactly like this, you can do one or two braids in each column. As many as you want.”

TODAY                      Rina Raphael / TODAY

Take your two little braids in the back and you pin them down. 

TODAY            Rina Raphael / TODAY

Then swirl that big braid up in a loose bun, and voila! The Starks are back in power.

Look no. 2: Nighttime

When you get home, after applying a smoky eye, it's time to get "House of Tyrell ferosh." 

                   TODAY            Rina Raphael / TODAY

Let down your bun and have your braids just hang as you lightly apply hair spray to them. Let dry.

TODAY                   Rina Raphael / TODAY

Take a flatiron and hit all the braids. No need to go easy. “Hit 'em hard," advises Van Ness. "Let 'em know whose boss”). The fewer braids you had, the looser it will be.

TODAY                     Rina Raphael / TODAY

Begin unbraiding all those braids.

TODAY                          Rina Raphael / TODAY

“Mess it up, so its not so perf,” says Van Ness, then take a curling iron to a few front pieces to frame your face.

TODAY                  Rina Raphael / TODAY
TODAY Rina Raphael / TODAY

Gorg, right? Love live her mane's reign.

Want to see more of these cats? Watch their amazing "Gay of Thrones" episode together:

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