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Her hair and the red carpet: Lupita Nyong’O makes a political statement

Last Saturday, Kenyan-Mexican actress literally stormed the red carpet at the world premiere of Star Wars: The Last Jedi with her stunning emerald and sequinned slashed-to-the-thigh Halpern dress; and mini afro.

That mini afro, styled in Nyong O’s natural hair texture, is a refreshing change from the usual (artificially) sleek and shiny locks of black women in the entertainmant spotlight. (Think Naomi Campbell, Nicki Minaj, Tyra Banks, Kerry Washington.)

Clearly, Nyong O’s preferred hairstyle is a political statement (which applies to everything else in Trump’s America these days), and a nod to her belief in propogating diverse definitions of beauty.

She had made her stand clear in an Instagram post in November, when she flamed Grazia UK for putting her on the cover but cropping out the kinky frizzy curls.

In her post, she wrote: “As I have made clear so often in the past with every fiber of my being, I embrace my natural heritage and despite having grown up thinking light skin, and straight, silky hair were the standards of beauty, I now know that my dark skin and kinky, coily hair are beautiful too. Being featured on the cover of a magazine fulfills me as it is an opportunity to show other dark, kinky-haired people, and particularly our children, that they are beautiful just the way they are. I am disappointed that @graziauk invited me to be on their cover and then edited out and smoothed my hair to fit their notion of what beautiful hair looks like. Had I been consulted, I would have explained that I cannot support or condone the omission of what is my native heritage with the intention that they appreciate that there is still a very long way to go to combat the unconscious prejudice against black women’s complexion, hair style, and texture. #dtmh”

The post has been liked by more than 270,000 on Instagram.

This is the typical I’m standing-up-for-myself Nyong’O style.

She rose to fame for her starring role in the 2013 political drama 12 Years A Slave. She is the first Kenyan-Mexican actress to bag the Academy Award, and has since been on a mission to dispel the stereotypes of beauty. Her immaculate sense of style – she has been dressed by everyone from Prada to Calvin Klein Collection, and the face of Lancome – has given her the advantage of being a true influence on Millennials who demand to be accepted as they are.

Here are more snaps of Lupita wearing her natural hair texture on the red carpet and fashion shoots to full effect.

Photos: W Magazine; Lupita Nyong’O Instagram @lupitanyongo

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