Categories
hair Kate Middleton royals

Is Duchess Kate in the middle of one of her best hair eras?

The Cambridges visit Kew Gardens

There are a lot of recent articles about the Duchess of Cambridge’s styling. And very few articles about what she’s actually been up to, or her plans to be keen in the future. Kate is all style and no substance, I think that’s been well-established, but the vibe these days is that the only thing worth talking about is her styling. And to be fair, she has made recent improvements. Since her two month “summer holiday,” Kate has come back to work looking refreshed and nice. She’s not covered in buttons and lace. She’s not wandering around in new bespoke coatdresses. And most importantly, she’s changed up her hair. She let her hair grow over the summer, and she’s now eschewing the wiglets, extensions and hairpieces she used to need to make her hair look fuller and full of sausage curls (a notable exception: that rat’s nest tragedy of budget hairpieces at the No Time to Keen premiere). All of which means… we’re getting another Daily Mail article about her hair.

Kate Middleton’s brunette locks have long been her crowning glory, and her bouncy ‘Chelsea blow dry’ is as intrinsic to her look as the Queen’s famous Launer handbags. However, the Duchess of Cambridge unveiled a new twist to her hairstyle this week when she visited Kew Gardens for an Earthshot Prize event with Prince William. The royal’s hair cascaded around her shoulder in looser tonged waves, with the emphasis on sleek and natural rather than voluminous and bouncy.

Following her appearance, celebrity stylist Tom Smith told FEMAIL Kate had opted for a ‘newer, fresher look’ which had ‘modernised her public image while getting ready for her future role within The Firm.’

Tom explained: ‘It’s important as a senior Royal to minimise how much she divides opinion and so Kate is not likely to ever embrace strong trends in hair, beauty or fashion. The bouncy blow dry she is known for is a modern classic, a style that has become timeless, traditional and classic. It shows off the bouncy healthy vibrant nature of the hair and gives the feel of luxury and health. Kate’s newer style to me is a more modern interpretation of her usual waves. We see the ends of her hair are a little straighter and ‘piecier’ which is definitely more in line with what is commonly asked for in salons these days.’

He continued: ‘She naturally has a fantastic head of hair and so this look still has the luxurious and healthy feel to it. But it’s clear she is more open than ever to embracing a more modern looking wave. It has a confidence about it and shows her in a more fashionable light.’

[From The Daily Mail]

I often think to myself that other than Kate, the only woman who is more defined by her hair is Jennifer Aniston. And that’s sort of what Kate’s hair reminds me of these days, the soft waves, a bit more piecey and beachy. Dare I say, a bit more California? LOL. Anyway, because Kate is constantly infantilized, we do feel the need to do positive reinforcement whenever something goes right for her. So… her hair looks good, I do like her current style. I think it could be a few inches shorter, but overall… one of her better hair eras.

Duchess of Cambridge visits University College London

The Cambridges visit Kew Gardens

World Premiere of No Time To Die on Tuesday 28 September 2021

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

Categories
BIPOC Charlize Theron hair Kids

Charlize Theron: An ‘incredible village of Black women’ helps me with my daughters



Charlize Theron adopted her two daughters, Jackson, 9, and August, 5, in 2012 and 2015. Charlize has been open about tackling Black hair care and raising her daughters to embrace their beauty and heritage. Charlize is profiled in Essence where she states that she has a village of Black women who keep her in check. They help Charlize especially with her daughters’ hair care needs. Charlize is promoting her Addam’s Family animated movie, out now in theaters and VOD. Below are a few highlights from Essence:

Theron is a mother to two adoptive daughters, 9-year-old Jackson and 5-year-old August, both Black children. As a white South African woman, Theron says she realizes that she will not have all the answers when it comes to raising little Black girls, but isn’t afraid to ask for them along the way.

“I have a real acknowledgment, as we all do as parents – we know where we lack and we know where we are rich. And this is maybe not where I am,” she admits. However, she is sure to keep a knowledgeable network around her that can fill in her gaps in knowledge and know-how to help her children take pride in their appearance.

“I am so grateful to the incredible village of strong Black women in my life who I can pick up a phone to, or come over to my house and they’ll tell me: ‘You need to stop doing this,’ or ‘these baby hairs are breaking off. What are you doing?’” she shared. “So they put me in my place, and because of them I feel this great confidence in raising my girls.”

As for the issues of Black girlhood beyond hair care, Theron says she keeps an open mind and ear and listens for her daughters’ guidance on what is necessary.

“I try to have consistent conversation so that it doesn’t feel like we just talk about things where there’s too much importance underlying where they get freaked out,” she said of broaching identity topics with her children. “I find that for them, it’s easier for them to just share and talk about these things. I’m also looking to them, right? They need examples, so I’m trying to create that for them.”

[From Essence]

I love that Charlize is raising her daughters with a village of Black women around so that they aren’t disconnected from their culture and heritage. I also love that Charlize is not afraid to ask questions, check her own bias and embrace her daughters’ journeys. Charlize is right to learn about her daughters’ needs. Black hair is a culture in and of itself and we ourselves are still learning about and embracing it. I feel if you are white and you adopt Black children, particularly girls, or if you are a white woman with biracial Black children, learning about their hair is imperative.

This makes me extremely happy. I know those girls are surrounded by love and are given the freedom to develop their characters and personalities. It is beautiful to see a daughter of apartheid embrace Blackness in the way Charlize has. (I don’t know if Charlize was raised in a certain way but growing up in such a segregated society has to have affected her.) Being willing to confront unconscious bias takes courage. I have always loved Charlize because she is a badass and this story just confirms that.

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Photos via Instagram and credit: Avalon.red

Categories
hair health Khloe Kardashian

Khloe Kardashian had post-covid hair loss: ‘it was really a struggle’



Female baldness has been a very important topic of conversation this last year. Christina Milian opened up about her postpartum hair loss. Jada Pinkett-Smith recently shaved off her hair because she has been suffering from alopecia the last few years. Gabrielle Union started her own haircare line as she battled tension alopecia from weaves and wigs. Many people have suffered from hair loss due to another culprit, COVID. One of the symptoms of long haul COVID is hair and teeth loss. Khloe Kardashian can attest to this. Khloe contracted COVID back in March 2020 and although she recovered, she experienced hair loss. Khloe opened up her post-COVID hair loss in a Twitter Space chat where she plugged a new brand she’s representing. Below are a few more highlights via People:

“My hair really fell out with COVID,” Kardashian shared, before noting that her bout with the virus happened around March 2020. “So after, it was really a struggle for a minute.”

The conversation came up while Kardashian was discussing New Zealand-based brand Dose & Co, for which she’s a global spokesperson. According to the Good American designer, taking collagen powder has “helped me so, so much” in stimulating hair growth.

“I do the powder, just because that’s what we had for so long,” she said, “and I take so many vitamins a day, it’s just so easy for me.”

Later in the chat, Kardashian said that her sense of taste and smell was “the only thing that I didn’t lose” when she had COVID.

“But I had everything else — like anything else you can imagine,” she added.

Temporary hair loss is a possible side effect of COVID-19, and a pre-print study from Indiana University found that around 33 percent of patients they surveyed noticed it as a symptom. Hair loss frequently happens due to stress, an effect called telogen effluvium, and severe illnesses like COVID-19 can stress out the body.

[From People]

As someone whose hair started thinning in the front when I was under a crap ton of stress a few years ago, I know how devastating hair loss is. I ended up shaving mine off and felt empowered, but I understand that it is one of the smallest privileges as a Black woman and not everyone would be comfortable to do that. I feel for Khloe. We have watched Khloe struggle with how she looks so I can only imagine how losing her hair has affected her self-esteem. A daily dose of collagen does help strengthen nails and hair. I began using it during my hair loss journey. I then added Jamaican and Haitian castor oils and Chebe oil. My hair is still thin in the front compared to the rest but it is not as bad as it once was. I am also having my hormonal levels checked to see if that is a factor.

I am assuming Khloe was initially using clip ins or wigs so that you couldn’t tell she was losing her hair. I am happy that Khloe is opening up about her hair loss journey. Conversations around female hair loss need to be normalized. I felt so alone in my struggle but now realize how common it is. COVID is brutal and it is not like we need anything else to make us hate this virus, but the fact that hair loss is a possible side effect makes it that much worse. I hope that Khloe is able to to heal her hair and body. I also hope that as we learn more about COVID and its side effects we are able to combat it better.

Categories
hair Tiffany Haddish

Tiffany Haddish on shaving her head: ‘I started to fall in love with myself’

Tiffany Haddish posing on a hotel balcony, via Instagram

Several high profile Black women, including Between Christina Milian and Jada Pinkett Smith have been discussing hair loss. Last summer, Tiffany Haddish posted a video on Instagram of her shaving her head. At the time, Tiffany didn’t explain why she did it. Tiffany is finally opening up about why she made such a drastic move last year. Tiffany said that she has damaged her hair multiple times because she was trying to conform to what the men in her life thought was beautiful. Appearing on Red Table Talk, Tiffany said that she had gotten a weave and permed her hair because her lovers at the time asked her to. Tiffany also said that she started to fall in love with herself after shaving her hair off and finally being able to see her features. Below are a few more highlights via Yahoo!:

The Night School actress, who recently shaved her head, joined fellow bald and beautiful ladies Jada Pinkett Smith, Willow Smith and Adrienne Banfield-Norris to talk about how she’s more confident than ever now that she’s no longer sporting long locks.

“I started to fall in love with myself,” Haddish explained. “That wasn’t even the intention. But I see all my features. My eyes, my nose, my cheeks. I was like, ‘God did a good job at putting me together.’”

The Emmy winner, who worked with Pinkett Smith in the movie Girls Trip, revealed that while her current partner, rapper and actor Common, appreciated her “meat head,” she’s dealt with exes who wanted her to style her hair in a certain way.

“I had this boyfriend, and he used to be like ‘Tiffany, are so pretty, but you would look so much better if your hair went to your breast,’” Haddish shared. “So me and my auntie got together and we tried to put a weave in my head and it did not work out. I would look crazy.”

She added that her ex-husband, William Stewart, also had ideas about how she should do her hair. Haddish said, “When I got married I was trying to decide how to do my hair. My ex-husband said ‘I ain’t never been with a woman who ain’t got no perm. I don’t know how I’m going to be married to you without no perm.’ So I permed my hair, and maybe three weeks into the marriage, my hair broke off.”

Haddish declared, “That’s the last time I listen to a man I’m laying down with about my hair.”

[From Yahoo!]

I am loving how Black women including Gabrielle Union, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kerry Washington, and Candice Patton have been talking openly about Black hair care. I give even bigger props to those women who have been open about suffering from alopecia and taking better care of their hair. We should be having more of the hair conversations as Black women. I have to agree with Tiffany, the first time I shaved my hair off, I never felt so beautiful. Many people that it looked masculine and asked me why I would do that to my hair. My response as always was “it’s just hair.” At the time I was suffering from stress alopecia and was losing my hair in clumps. I felt that I needed to free myself from the trauma of balding. I never felt as sexy or feminine as I did with that shaved head. also like how Tiffany talks about damaging her hair for the sole purpose of pleasing the men in her life. I know a lot of Black women stuck in that cycle of pain. I do hope that Tiffany is doing what is necessary to care for her tresses.

Although I have my beef with Tiffany and how she has handled some things recently, I will definitely watch this episode of Red Table Talk. There is definitely something empowering about Black women doing whatever the hell they want to with their hair. Men be damned.

Tiffany Haddish at the Laugh Factory in a long gown, via Instagram

Photos via Instagram and credit: Avalon.red

Categories
christina milian hair

Christina Milian on her postpartum hair loss: ‘I was so embarrassed by it’

Christina Milian selfie taken from the side


Several high profile women have opened up about suffering from hair loss. Gabrielle Union stated that her hair started falling out due to the use of wigs and extensions. Jada Pinkett Smith said that her hair fell out in clumps. And now singer Christina Milian is opening about her postpartum hair loss. Speaking to People, Christina said that she noticed that her hair starting falling out last year about 3-6 months after she gave birth to her son. Christina said that it happened after her daughter, now 11, was born as well. She was so embarrassed that she hid her hair loss from her boyfriend, Matt. Christina said she was so desperate for solutions that she would look for billboards advertising hair loss solutions. Now Christina is partnering with hair care line Nioxin. Below are a few more highlights from People:

“I have always taken pride in not being the girl that leaves hair in the shower. Like, you’re not going to find my hair all over the soap,” she tells PEOPLE, laughing. “Well, I became that girl.”

Milian says that at first, she tried to keep it from boyfriend Matt Pokora. “I’m cleaning up before he gets in the shower because I just didn’t want him to see it,” she admits. “Eventually I had to tell him: I’m losing my hair. I was so embarrassed by it. There was hair everywhere.”

The “Dip It Low” singer, 39, is speaking out about dealing with the common condition, which can affect a new mom’s self-esteem. “Emotionally, there is a huge drop in confidence,” she says, recalling how it felt to experience hair loss while also being overwhelmed with a newborn and dealing with postpartum hormones.

Milian started noticing her hair thinning and falling out around 3 to 6 months postpartum with Isaiah, as well as with her 11-year-old daughter Violet Madison, whom she shares with ex-husband The Dream. “It’s a really disheartening experience,” she says. “I had times where I wanted to cry because I wasn’t sure if I’d ever have my hair grow back again.”

She recalls feeling desperate for a solution. “I would drive and actually look for billboards about hair loss. I’d look for doctor billboards and infomercials. I was checking everything out. It was a panic within me.”

[From People]

As a woman hair loss is definitely humiliating. I know men have this struggle too and it can be very hard for them. Let’s talk about how going bald is particularly devastating for Black women. Black women specifically have an unhealthy attachment to the way our hair is supposed to look. Perhaps its due to all of the Sunday sermons where we hear that a woman’s hair is her glory and crown. When my hair began to fall out, I was horrified. My self esteem took a hit and I tried everything I could to salvage it. When I finally shaved it all off, I felt so free. I understand the frustration and the terror that Christina, Gabrielle, and Jada have felt. I am glad that Christina has figured out the cause of her hair loss and has found products that help. I love that Jada shaved her head and that Gabrielle stared wearing her hair natural and finding ways to protect her hair.

Conversations around hair loss need to happen, especially in the Black hair space. We need to have open conversations about solutions and cultural mindsets around hair to help free us from the shackles of what our hair is supposed to look like. I am glad Christina is talking about her journey. I hope that in sharing, Christina’s story will help other women going through the same thing.

Christina Milian standing in front of a pool in a formfitting mauve dress which is slightly see through

Christina Milian with her boyfriend, Matt, she is smiling at the camera and he is looking at her adoringly

photos via Instagram

Categories
Disney hair Marvel Scarlett Johansson

Demand for red hair dye has increased 163% since Black Widow came out

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Hollywood has been inspiring fashion and beauty for decades. From Mia Farrow’s pixie cut to Rachel from Friends’ bob, women follow style and beauty trends set by celebrities. Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow has started a hair trend. According to UK beauty retailer JustMyLook, since Black Widow was released two weeks ago, there has been a 163% increase in demand for red hair dye. Below are a few more details about the summer color trend:

According to the website Justmylook, there has been a 163% spike in demand for the colour since the release of Black Widow, presumably because lots of people sat through two hours and 14 minutes of a film about a woman grappling with the psychological torment of knowing she was part of a Soviet military programme that brainwashed, sterilised and murdered hundreds of abandoned girls, only to think: “Ooh, I bet I’d look lovely with her hair.”

There’s a great compilation video on YouTube in which Scarlett Johansson suffers through question after insulting question posed to her by journalists about Black Widow’s appearance. Her co-stars are asked about stunts and character motivation, and she is asked what food she had to eat to get in shape. How does it feel to be a sex symbol? What are Black Widow’s key fashion elements? Does she wear knickers under her jumpsuit? Perhaps this latest news, that the main thing audiences are taking from Black Widow is her lovely shiny hair, is an extension of that same trend.

Maybe we need to explore this further. Have people tracked down the brand of makeup Johansson wore in the scene where she falls off a roof and bashes her body into an agonising state of disrepair? Have sales of photogenic yet utterly impractical leather jumpsuits shot up as well, along with a corresponding surge in talcum powder? Are more and more women having their necks surgically dislocated so they can pose for photos while simultaneously displaying their bum, boobs and face like Black Widow did in that first Avengers poster?

[From The Guardian]

The hairstyles in Black Widow were also practical, unlike what we usually see on superhero women. One of my favorite parts of Black Widow was when Yelena, played by Florence Pugh, was teasing Natasha about her hair flip and super hero pose. It really was ridiculous. Hollywood doesn’t know how to have a strong female lead without sexualizing her and making her into a love-besotted damsel like Wonder Woman. The Natasha in Black Widow had definitely matured and gotten over herself. She wasn’t hyper intent on proving a point or being sexy while kicking ass. Natasha just was. This is why I am excited that women are just now catching “scarlet fever” and wanting to dye their hair red. This says something about what women find not only attractive but inspiring. I feel Hollywood and in particular Marvel should take note.

I am so happy to see the gingers getting some love. Red hair is one of my favorite hair colors. Especially the deep rich auburn kind. It looks good on many different skin tones and I wish more people would opt for scarlet over blonde. It is awesome to see that red hair is trending in the UK as well. In the meantime, I look forward to seeing all the red heads coming out this summer. I don’t care that probably 90% of them will be bottled gingers.

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Photos via Instagram

Categories
hair Willow Smith

Willow Smith shaved her head in a performance: I want to promote expression

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Last week, Jada Pinkett Smith credited her daughter Willow for encouraging her to shave off her hair after years of dealing with hair loss. Now, Willow has decided to upgrade her own hair game. During a live stream of her new album release concert on Facebook Watch, Willow remixed her 2011 hit, “Whip My Hair,” into a punk rock sensation. During the performance, Willow had what looks like a band member shave her hair off on stage while she played a guitar rift. Let’s just say, we now see where Willow inherited her beauty. Below are more details on Willow’s hair transformation via Today:

On Friday, the 20-year-old singer released her new album, “lately I feel EVERYTHING,” and in tandem with the release, she also produced a concert with Facebook Watch. She ended the almost hour-long set with a new punk rock version of the song that made her famous in 2010, “Whip My Hair.”

“My favorite song in the set right now just because of how it feels to sing would probably have to be ‘Whip My Hair,” Smith, who is the daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, said during a behind-the-scenes interview.

“I am thinking about shaving my head during the ‘Whip My Hair’ performance,” she later added. “This is gonna be my third time in my life shaving my head. I’m always shaving my head at monumental times in my life when things are really changing and this is definitely one of those moments.”

Near the end of her energetic performance, Willow sits down in a chair as someone shaves her head while she continues to play the guitar.

[From Today]

I love how Willow says that she has shaved her hair off three times in her young life and that she does that when she in the middle of a life change. If this isn’t the story of most Black women, then I don’t know what to tell you. Every time I am going through some sort of life change I either cut all my hair off or shave it off, so I can relate. I also love how Willow made the connection between her “Whip My Hair” anthem to her desire to spread self love, acceptance and positivity. Like I said before, I used to play “Whip My Hair” for my Korean students back in 2012. My students loved that song. It really has been a delight watching Willow grow up into the beautiful confident woman she is. I know a lot of people used to side-eye the Smith kids but they really turned out to be quite grounded adults. As for Willow entering into punk rock, I love how she wishes to represent Black women, despite seeing the racist abuse her mother received when touring with her band. The pink genre is typically quite white and male. As talented and determined Willow is, I am sure she will continue to inspire Black hair trends and Gen Z to do things they were told they couldn’t.

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— v (@ViralMaterial) July 17, 2021

The moment when Willow gets her head shaved is a the very end, at minute 47.

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