While many black women still believe that relaxers, weaves and wigs are the best way to go, more and more celebrities are embracing the natural texture of their hair, showing up on the red carpet proud about their gorgeous natural look.
Find out which celebrities with natural hair are leaving behind wigs and showing off their natural tresses. From actresses like Viola Davis and Uzo Aduba to singer like Solange and Esperanza Spalding, here are the women who are proud of their natural hair.
While she’s mostly stuck in a wig on “How to Get Away with Murder”, Viola Davis made headlines when she showed off her natural hair on the show. The actress has been showing off her afro on the red carpet for a long time now, and even wears it on magazine covers.
The actress also battled alopecia after wearing wigs for too long in her 20s. “I never showed my natural hair. It was a crutch, not an enhancement… I was so desperate for people to think that I was beautiful. I had to be liberated from that to a certain extent,” David told Vulture.
Beyoncé’s younger sister has her own big achievements, in music and fashion, but being one of the celebrities with natural hair has also made her an inspiration for many black women. “Just because you’re natural doesn’t mean you’ll be able to wash, shake and go. It’s a lot of work. If it’s something you truly feel strongly about and it’s going to represent you in lifestyle, hair care and health, then it’s a worthwhile journey to take. I stand for people who are firm in their journey,” Solange Knowles told Essence magazine.
The first jazz artist to win a Grammy Award for Best New Artist, Esperanza Spalding has also embraced her natural hair as the right choice. “I’ve been natural my entire life! My mother didn’t believe in relaxers, and vowed never to put lye on her child’s scalp. Lye is very toxic and your scalp is among the thinnest skin that you have on your body. The harm this stuff can do should not be taken lightly. I’ve never had a relaxer, and I never will,” Spaling told CurlyNikki.com.
The award season red carpet sweetheart of 2014, Lupita Nyong’o got only high marks for her looks, despite sticking to her TWA. She’s one of the celebrities with natural hair who’s proud of it and doesn’t plan on getting it chemically relaxed anytime soon. “Our hair is like clay. You can mold it into whatever you want it to be!” she explained at the Essence Black Women in Hollywood red carpet event.
The “Orange Is the New Black” actress has also impressed with her natural hair looks on the red carpet, even if she also uses relaxers for a more sleek hairstyle.
The singer-songwriter developed her iconic pompadour once she stopped using relaxers. She’s one of the celebrities with natural hair who had to learn to love her natural hair texture, but she now fully embraces it. “Growing up, my mom put relaxer on it. When I was 18, I grew it out and wore it natural, and I haven’t turned back. Then I figured out my style by experimenting. I wanted a look I could walk into a dinner party with and also wear to rock out onstage,” Janelle Monáe told Glamour.
When she’s not keeping her hair braided, Erykah Badu loves to wear a gorgeous afro. “To me it’s healthier to, I guess, be as natural as you can in your most natural state. At the same time, how you wear your hair is a political statement as well. Pretty much everything you do as a black woman is a political statement,” she told KnottyAndNice.org.
Few celebrities with natural hair experimented with it as much as Kelis, and the singer remains an inspiration for black women everywhere, whether she’s rocking a pink or green hairstyle.
Corinne Bailey Rae
The British singer-songwriter is also one of the celebrities with natural hair, even though sometimes that means more work. “If you get the ends cut solid so they don’t split they’re not going to break and your hair’s going to grow. People who think their hair doesn’t grow, it’s not true, everyone’s hair grows,” she told BET.com.