Sara Vilkomerson
June 22, 2017 AT 10:30 AM EDT

There’s so much that is pitch-perfect on GLOW — the new Netflix series that will be available starting this Friday — and the ’80s look of star Alison Brie is no exception.

“My No. 1 goal with this show was to look totally different and unexpected,” Brie tells EW. “I wanted to look like a totally different person because Ruth is so different than any character I’ve played before.”

Ruth, an inspiring actress who turns to the formation of an all-female wrestling league as her salvation, certainly looks the part. “I hadn’t ever done a dramatic haircut — not in years anyway,” Brie says. “We cut it and permed. Like, we shagged down. I did an honest-to-god, old school perm. I was a small child in the ’80s and my mother got so many perms, and that perm smell? Major nostalgia.”

Brie arrived at her styling session armed with inspiration. “I brought in a picture of Sigourney Weaver in Alien,” she says. “That is one of my favorite movies and so now Ruth and I have the same icon!”

Everett Collection

Of course, curls like that are a pretty serious commitment. “That was explained to me very carefully by our hairdresser. She sat with me and was like, ‘Listen, once you do this, your hair is going to just look like this,'” Brie laughs. “You have to embrace it! You have to really lean into it. I’d get out of the shower, scrunch it with a towel, and then put in mousse. It was great. I’d let it air dry and now find the science of curly hair rather fascinating.”

Still, when it came time for Brie to marry longtime boyfriend Dave Franco last March, she chose to bring her naturally straight hair back. “Once I booked the show, I was like, we’re not getting married till next year. We had been debating trying to set a date and then I was like, ‘Honey, we cannot get married till the show is over,’ which was kind of nice since we didn’t need to think about it ’til the new year. I was sort of like, I can’t fully have the perm!”

Another bonus from her intense GLOW-training? “My arms were in great wedding shape.”

GLOW arrives on Netflix on Friday, June 23.

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