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[Pics] Kerry Washington Wearing Her Real Hair in Allure is a Big Deal Because It Wasn’t Treated Like a Big Deal

• Oct 30, 2017

You can tell when a magazine is featuring a black actress with her real hair. Usually it’s in a special issue dedicated to “real” (i.e. not thin and white) women, or it has a headline like, “Such-and-such actress gets real.” Basically the word “real” is thrown around a lot and it’s code for “we’re not really going to do this all the time because we have a eurocentric standard of beauty to uphold, but here’s this.”

One of the most annoying things about all this, to me, is the idea that you can’t do a high caliber beauty editorial without the use of significant hair alterations. And if you try, you have to use the word “real” to kind of lower expectations.

Kerry Washington is the covergirl for the November issue of Allure. The article is mostly about her transition away from her iconic role as Olivia Pope in Scandal (the show is in its last season) and her hair isn’t referenced until the fifth paragraph (and even then only in passing.)

Meanwhile several shots in the accompanying editorial are done with Washington’s real hair.

Allure Magazine

Allure Magazine

Allure Magazine

Allure Magazine

I’m here for the normalization of black hair.

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7 Comments on "[Pics] Kerry Washington Wearing Her Real Hair in Allure is a Big Deal Because It Wasn’t Treated Like a Big Deal"

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those rope braids are soooo editorial! .…jk, she looks amazing <3


She looks beautiful. I love the hair, the styling, the makeup — it’s all wonderful! Just like we don’t often see black women’s natural hair in editorial spreads, we also don’t see a lot of this really soft, beautiful makeup. We’re always done up diva style, which is fine. But some of us don’t want the YouTube beauty tutorial as an everyday look.


Did they really have to let a good part of the front of her hair stick out? It’s not baby hair, just some awkward long strings… I guess it’s the ”real” look


Wow! Beautiful! I DON’T they wear their REAL hair more OFTEN…they should.


The narrative is random and uninformative. The pic shows her hair in braids and somewhat disarray. I m sure she does not wear braids all the time

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