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The Secret Behind the Retro Hairstyles on Grease: Live!: Personal Lubricant!

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If you were one of the millions of fans who tuned in to Fox’s
Grease: Live!
Sunday, you most definitely spent the night singing along with a tub of popcorn (or bottle of wine) on your couch. You might have also spent the three-hour-long musical questioning some of the show’s big beauty moments: How did the T-Birds grease back their dos? How did Sandy’s hair ribbons stay so secure? And of course, how did Julianne Hough switch from straight strands to a voluminous perm for her mic drop finale performance? Luckily, we have at least one answer — the secret to the stars’ greased-up hairstyles (and a few theories about the rest).

Grease: Live! beauty secrets Danny Zuko
Kevin Estrada/FOX

In order to transform Aaron Tveit into T-Bird honcho, Danny Zuko, (as well as the rest of the Grease: Live! cast), he needed the perfect slicked-back hairstyle. Which meant the on-set hair team needed a product that offered mega shine and hold — and basic Dep gel wasn’t going to cut it. Enter in the world’s most unexpected product: personal lubricant.

During the show, Ana Gasteyer, who played the part of Principal McGee, shared the big hair secret in a behind-the-scenes Twitter photo.

“Funfact: #oldschool hair product is delivering those killer #GreaseLive hairdos familyplanning @GoGrease,” she said in the Tweet.

Then she snapped a post-show selfie, showing off the after effects of her lubed-up do, with the caption: “Morning after #McGee, still glowing from last night’s thrilling #greaselive ride. Also, this is how your hair looks after it’s been sprayed, teased and KY’ed within an inch of its life.”

Fun fact: In the original 1978 film, T-Birds had to use laundry detergent to get the grease out of their hair every night because the product used for hold was too strong, according to a former T-Bird, Kelly Ward.

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Grease: Live! beauty secrets Sandy Julianne Hough
Kevin Estrada/FOX; Frank Micelotta/FOX

Another hair moment we were shocked to see in the show: How all those colorful ribbons stayed in Julianne Hough‘s hair during her energetic Sandy dance sequences. Her bows never shifted. Now that’s some serious hair magic (or maybe the pros found a new brand of invisible bobby pins we don’t know about).

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As for Hough’s epic Sandy perm, we still can’t believe the transformation. In one scene she’s hand-jiving with sleek, straight strands and by the next commercial break, she’s full on Olivia Newton John. Grease: Live! hair team, we want to know: What’s the secret? How can go from 0 to ultra-curly in less than five minutes? We imagine some extensions (or even a wig!) are involved, but how do they stay in place?

Do you have any theories? Share below.
–Sarah Kinonen