Speaking to Ellen DeGeneres at the Warner Theatre in Washington DC, promoting her new book, The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times, Michelle Obama revealed her hair worries when first residing in the White House. The former First Lady said she decided to straighten her hair while the populace was “getting adjusted” to the first Black first family. Although she said that styling her hair in braids would have been easier, Mrs. Obama thought the public was not ready for her to wear her hair naturally.
As previously reported in one of our early blogs about a wholly different story, the US House of Representatives passed the Crown Act in March. This legislative measure prohibits discrimination based on hairstyles. The Senate has yet to pass the measure, but several states and municipalities have passed local versions. Still, personally, Mrs. Obama surely felt some of what the Crown Act tries to combat.
As Mrs. Obama makes clear, and surely from a specific weighty concern on her behalf, the hairstyle we wear does influence perception. In a perfect world, we’d be taken by the measure of our actions and words first and foremost, but this is hardly how we humans act. Instead, we make judgments about others based on the clothes somebody might wear, the color of their skin, and, yes, their hairstyle.
And we won’t soon be changing our ways.
Guci Image customers are well aware of the judgment that comes from the culture at large over long luscious locks, thick curls, and men and women who have what seems to be thick hair. And while plenty of people cultivate a sexy and stylish look while sporting a bald head or a closely cropped cut to dimmish their thinning hair, our northern New Jersey clients wear the hair they do as much for their confidence as a perception they wish to influence.