J.Crew Doesn’t Believe in Hairstylists for Its Black Models


Many are up in arms about a photo making the rounds in social media, showing a black model in a recent J.Crew ad campaign who looks as if she ain’t seen nary a brush or some grease in days.


Now, there’s nothing wrong with our beautiful, natural, grows-out-of-my-head-like-dis coils, but the photo apparently shows an attempt to put the model’s hair into a ponytail that has failed miserably. Her hair looks like mine used to after I spent a whole day outside in the summer when I was 7.

Where was the black hairstylist? And who approved this look to be printed in a catalog? Is natural and “unkempt” still acceptable?

Of course, this being black hair, there was some debate over whether folks were making a mountain out of a bird’s nest:


But in my eyes, J.Crew could’ve done better. I’ve been on many photo shoots, and there are always hair and makeup artists on call for each shot. J.Crew—which offered an apology after a light draggin’—needs more people.

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About the author

Angela Helm

Ms. Bronner Helm is a Contributing Editor at The Root. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.