Lupita Nyong’o Reveals Who Inspired Her to Shave Her Head
No hair? Don’t care. Lupita Nyong’o doesn’t have time to care if you think she’s beautiful or not.
In the October 2016 issue of Vogue, where she graces the cover clad in a Chanel dress and Cathy Waterman earrings, the Oscar-winning actress shares her thoughts on beauty. As someone who was previously dubbed People’s Most Beautiful Person, Nyong’o reveals it was her dad who inspired her to chop off all her hair and rock a shaved head.
“I wanted to know what my head looked like,” she tells the magazine, explaining that she was tired of going to the salon to get her hair styled weekly. At 19, she decided to shave her head. “My father doesn’t know this, but it was at his prompting. He was funding my hairdos, and at one point he said, ‘Ah, why don’t you just cut it all off?'”
Nyong’o also understands how many will not be able to look past her dark skin, saying, “I cannot run away from who I am and my complexion or the larger society and how they may view that.”
“The European sense of beauty affects us all,” she continues. “I came home from college in the early two-thousands and saw ads on TV with a girl who can’t get a job. She uses this product. She gets her skin lighter. She gets the job. The lording of lighter skin is a common thing growing up in Nairobi. Being called ‘black mamba.’ The slow burn of recognizing something else is better than you.”
Though she admittedly used to pray for lighter skin, Nyong’o now accepts herself for who she is — and her confidence has made her become one of Hollywood’s most sought-after actress today.
“I’ve never had so many people call me beautiful until you showed up,” she says. “I get called to auditions I never would have been called to before. And I know it’s because you exist.”