We asked this rising star what it's like to be a celebrity with curly red hair in a straight-haired industry.

Nikki McCauley

I'm "the girl with red curly hair." - Nikki McCauley

Nikki McCauley

Hair Type: 3B with some 3A

Nikki McCauley, the daughter of an Irish Air Force Colonel father and Venezuelan mother, was born in Texas and lived all over the world before settling in Los Angeles to pursue her acting career.

To date, she has had numerous television achievements, including national commercials and spots on such shows as "The Office," "Veronica Mars" and "Ghost Whisperer." McCauley is active in the Los Angeles theater scene, and has still managed to find time to get her undergraduate degree in psychology from UCLA.

McCauley was very gracious to talk about her curly red hair with us (and with hair like hers...). All that business about actresses being difficult? Not McCauley. Her easy-going manner goes to prove that this star is on the rise.

NaturallyCurly: How and when did you start embracing your curls?

Nikki McCauley: I actually didn't start growing hair until I was 6 years old! My mom had to tape bows to my little red spikes until then. Little did we know I would grow to have so much hair and that it would be so curly! And, actually my hair didn't start to get curly until I was 14 and then it just kept getting curlier and curlier. At first I didn't know how to work with it, but once I started learning how to master the curl, it got to be a lot of fun! And it's crazy the response I get from it. They'll be days that I wake up and wish I had straight hair and then I'll get several adoring comments from strangers throughout the day—and I'll realize how lucky I am to be blessed with my locks.

NC: What is your current routine?

NM: Over the years I've tried out so many products that I can't even count... but the key has always been over-conditioning my hair and applying the product when my hair is super wet and then letting it dry naturally for a bit before finishing it off by drying it with a diffuser. Not using a towel to dry it after getting out of the shower has always worked well for me. I use different techniques depending on if I want it to be big and wild or tamed with perfect ringlets.

NC: What about your hair stylists?

NM: Finding the right stylist can be tricky... but I've found that having it cut while it's dry is the key. Living in Los Angeles, there are many expert stylists to choose from... but Byron Williams in Beverly Hills might be one of the best cuts I've ever had.

NC: What are your must-have products and tools?

NM: I've been using Miss Jessie's Quick Curls lately—and that has really helped on the days that I want my hair to be a bit more weighed down and more "commercial friendly." I also like Redken's Ringlet 07 and Iso Bouncy Cream. I use them together and then diffuse. At times that I don't want to use product and give my hair a bit of a break, I will use Wen's Fig Cleansing conditioner— and that's all I have to use. It gives my hair a natural style without product that can be helpful if I'm going to a shoot where they want to put my hair up.

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Alicia Ward

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The link to her new project doesn't appear to be working. I'm a working actress, as well, and had questions about how she gets her hair "commericial friendly." Living in a smaller market, CDs are not as comfortable with individuality. I've decided I'm going to have to straighten my hair for those auditions, and I hate that. :(