Lupita Nyong’o Isn’t Impressed With a Magazine Photoshopping Her Hair

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Last night, Lupita Nyong’o tweeted out an image of her Grazia UK cover, unhappy that the final product decided to edit out her hair.

The Black Panther star wrote, “Disappointed that @GraziaUK edited out & smoothed my hair to fit a more Eurocentric notion of what beautiful hair looks like #dtmh” in reference to Solange Knowles’ song “Don’t Touch My Hair” from “A Seat at the Table”. The singer-songwriter dealt with a similar case of photoshop in her cover of the Evening Standard, where the magazine edited out her braided crown for “layout purposes”.

While Grazia might offer a similar justification, considering they might not have wanted Nyong’o’s hair to overlap with the black text, erasing the texture of Nyong’o’s hair sends out an extremely damaging message about what beautiful hair looks like whether intentional or not. This was not an inevitable, unavoidable situation. This was a huge editorial oversight, which demonstrates a need for a diverse team and more awareness about representation.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with straightening or changing hair, but we need to fight against the societal pressure and demand that black women change their hair for the sake of professionalism, beauty, and the comfort of others. For instance, last month Kerry Washington graced the cover of Allure with unlaid edges, saying, “I want [my children] to know that their hair is perfect as it is. They don’t have to change it or straighten it.”

(image: Grazia)

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