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Game of Thrones Hair Designer Answers All Our Pressing Questions

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Spoilers ahead.

On Sunday night, HBO will air the season three finale Game of Thrones, after which we will enter a long, bleak Daenerys-less summer. Sure we’ll have no more character deaths to mourn, but we also won’t be able to marvel at the hair and costumes.

So we hopped on the phone with the show’s genius hair designer, Kevin Alexander, for a marathon-length chat about the style and symbolism of the characters’ various ‘dos this season.

Season three filmed in Belfast, Morocco, Iceland, and Dubrovnik–very different locations with very different climates–which means serious wig maintenance, as most of the characters wear them. (Heartbreaking as it may be, Emilia Clarke, who plays Daenerys, is not a natural ice-blonde.) At any one time, depending on the scene, there are up to 50-100 wigs in use. “In the hotter climates, the wigs are a constant battle because of the frizziness, the humidity,” Alexander told us. The delicate wigs (they’re made of lace and real hair) certainly take a beating, and each season they have to be “re-fronted,” which means the whole front section of the wig needs to be re-built.

Alexander surveys his handiwork on Emilia Clarke, who plays Daenerys.

They’re a bitch to travel with, too. If they’re styled, they need to go on a special block shaped like the actor’s head, wrapped in acid-free paper, and carefully packed into a crate. Luckily Alexander and his team of stylists–Candice Banks, Roz Culora, Gary Machin, and Dana Kalder–have it down pat.

Of course what we really want to know about is how Alexander and his team come up with those crazy complicated plaits (especially Daenerys’s) and what it’s like to work with Kit Harington’s luscious locks.

A complete analysis of each character’s hair, right this way:

Photos: Keith Bernstein/Helen Sloan for HBO

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