Photoshopped Natural Hair As Experienced by Lupita Nyong'o And Solange Knowles

Photoshopped Natural Hair As Experienced by Lupita Nyong'o And Solange Knowles

Reminding the media not to touch girls' hair.
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The latest Grazia UK cover features Lupita Nyong’o, but on Friday, November 10th, the Oscar-winning actress took to Instagram to reveal that the cover wasn’t what she thought it might be. While she was originally photographed with her natural, textured hair in a low and clearly visible ponytail, the cover displayed a photoshopped version, sans ponytail, and with a smoother texture.

In a lengthy caption, Nyong'o writes: “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... 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.” The caption continues to detail that she hadn’t been contacted by Grazia or consulted with regards to the editing process. She expresses that had she known of their plans, she would have been unable to “support or condone the omission of what is [her] native heritage.”

Just two weeks prior, Solange Knowles endured a similar experience. Her cover shoot for Britain’s Evening Standard Magazine was conducted with her hair styled in an elaborate, braided crown, but when the feature was published, the hairstyle was removed altogether. Her Instagrammed response was brief, but shared Nyong’o’s sentiment: #dtmh. This hashtag abbreviates the phrase “Don’t Touch My Hair,”

and is also the name of one of the songs on Knowles’ new album, "A Seat at the Table."

Almost ironically, the interview Knowles conducted with the magazine details her value for braided hair, where she calls it an "act of beauty, an act of convenience and an act of tradition" — it is "its own art form." She describes salons as a place of refuge, a place where black women could progress through their individual hair journeys. To photoshop her braids out of her cover photo is to seemingly disregard her larger standpoint.

Both magazine platforms have released statements with regards to their editorial decisions. The journalist who conducted the ES interview, Angelica Jade, tweeted after its release, asking that her name be removed from the byline, as she claimed the editors of the magazine had distorted both her reporting and the overall presentation of the piece. Grazia claimed no knowledge of the photographer’s editing process, and of having never requested that her hair be retouched. They expressed regret over not having been aware of the alterations being made and claimed a want for accurate representations of diversity in their publications.

The messages that Knowles and Nyong’o put forth, and the editing that they encounter in these magazine publications are implicative of much larger issues that they both attempt to explain. In an interview last year with Saint Heron, Knowles described the song “Don’t Touch My Hair” with greater depth, providing that “the song is as much as what it feels like to have your whole identity challenged on a daily basis, although physically touching the hair is extremely problematic!” In her statement concerning Grazia, Nyong’o also stresses her personal need “to show other dark, kinky-haired people, and particularly our children, that they are beautiful just the way they are.”

The value they share of having natural hair represented in media is owed to the fact that historically, it is rarely represented. The Natural Hair Movement is a remarkably modern one. As women with public platforms, they demonstrate an understanding of their personal responsibility to use their platforms to encourage self-acceptance.

Cover Image Credit: @lupitanyongo / Instagram

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20 Small Tattoos With Big Meanings

Tattoos with meaning you can't deny.
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It's tough to find perfect tattoos with meaning.

You probably want something permanent on your body to mean something deeply, but how do you choose a tattoo that will still be significant in 5, 10, 15, or 50 years? Over time, tattoos have lost much of their stigma and many people consider them a form of art, but it's still possible to get a tattoo you regret.

So here are 20 tattoos you can't go wrong with. Each tattoo has its own unique meaning, but don't blame me if you still have to deal with questions that everyone with a tattoo is tired of hearing!

SEE RELATED: "Please Stop Asking What My Tattoos Mean"

1. A semi-colon indicates a pause in a sentence but does not end. Sometimes it seems like you may have stopped, but you choose to continue on.


2. "A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor."


3. Top symbol: unclosed delta symbol which represents open to change. Bottom symbol: strategy.


4. "There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls."


5. Viking symbol meaning "create your own reality."


6.Greek symbol of Inguz: where there's a will, there's a way.

7. Psalm 18:33 "He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights."


8. 'Ohm' tattoo that represents 4 different states of consciousness and a world of illusion: waking (jagrat), dreaming (swapna), deep sleep (sushupti), transcendental state (turiya) and world of illusion (maya)


9. Alchemy: symbolizes copper, means love, balance, feminine beauty and artistic creativity.


10. The Greek word “Meraki" means to do something with soul, passion, love and creativity or to put yourself in to whatever you do.


11. Malin (Skövde, Sweden) – you have to face setbacks to be able to go forward.

12. Symbol meaning "thief" from the Hobbit. It was the rune Gandalf etched into Bilbo's door so the dwarves could find his house.


13. “Lux in tenebris" means “light in darkness."

14. Anchor Tattoo: symbolizing strength & stability, something (or someone) who holds you in place, and provides you the strength to hold on no matter how rough things get.

15."Ad Maiora" is translated literally as “Towards greater things." It is a formula of greeting used to wish more success in life, career or love.


16. A glyphs means “explore." It was meant as a reminder for me to never stop exploring.

17. "Aut inveniam viam aut faciam," meaning roughly, "Either I shall find a way, or I will make one."


18. Lotus Flower. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives forth the flower's first and most literal meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment.

19. The zen (or ensō) circle to me represents enlightenment, the universe & the strength we all have inside of us.

20. Two meanings. The moon affirms life. It looks as if it is constantly changing. Can reminds us of the inconsistency of life. It is also symbolizes the continuous circular nature of time and even karma.


SEE ALSO: Sorry That You're Offended, But I Won't Apologize For My Tattoos


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18 Drugstore Items Girls Buy That We Didn't Even Think We Needed In Our Lives Until We Saw Them

Call us shopaholics but us females always will need these 18 things whether we know it before we enter the store, or not.

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Being a girl is hard; whenever I go to Target, Rite Aid or the mall for just one thing, I realize as I browse the aisles that I need much more than what I originally came for. Here are 18 things you may be forgetting you need next time you go shopping.

1. Makeup remover

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3. Hair ties 

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4. Nail polish & nail polish remover

Because why not try out a new color?

5. Deodorant

6. Shampoo & conditioner

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7. Chapstick / lipgloss

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8. A new brush

Because hopefully I'm not the only one who looses mine all the time

9. Tampons / pads

Remind me again why these are so expensive?

10. Razors

11. Spanx or tights

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12. Face wash

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13. Perfumes & lotions

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14. Foundation

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15. Hairspray 

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16. New toothpaste & toothbrush

17. Boby pins/hairclips

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18. Socks

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Because come on who doesn't need more socks

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