“Dying” To Be White: Gabby Union Says She Got Negative Backlash For Blonde Hair Color

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downloadBy: Krystle Crossman

Actress Gabrielle Union revealed in a recent beauty panel discussion with Essence Magazine that she was heavily criticized for dying her hair blonde for a new movie role. She said that people questioned her “blackness” and her character because of her new hair color.

She said that she felt strongly that it was her choice but that she had only done it for a role in the movie. She stated in a blog,

“It feels like my choice – or what they thought was my choice – to be closer to white somehow reflected on everybody.”

The way that everyone has reacted has shown the true way that people perceive black women who have blonde hair. It seems to them that the women are less black because they do not have their natural hair color. Shouldn’t black women be able to express themselves through popular styles just like everyone else without criticism?

Does a black woman dying her hair blonde really mean that she is ashamed of her roots, or that she is trying to be more white, or does it just mean that she likes that hair color and wants a new style?

A few years ago Beyonce was criticized for the same thing. She dyed her hair an almost platinum blonde and it had people asking if she was betraying her roots. A writer for Daily Mail said that Beyonce’s ignorance to her heritage was damaging to people of all color. Many said that she should have stuck to her roots and stayed with her natural hair color. Beyonce has also been criticized for appearing to have had her skin color lightened for magazine covers.

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14 Comments

    • Cortez McLaughlin on

      You are perfectly correct Rick, but you know what the real deal is. Some of our black women hate their natural hair, it is what it is.

  1. venita hampton on

    black women that dye their hair or lighten their skin are trying to b the looking that they can with clear skin not changing the color of their skin . we all just want o look our best not dying to be white they tan their skin so they can be like us they follow the way we dress we started the trend first. They just follow so get it right.

  2. I really don’t see what the big deal is, If a person chooses to change their hair color or lighten their skin, It still doesn’t take away from the person. What another person choose to do with themselves should not reflect on anyone but themselves. And it’s not a betrayal if someone choose to do something different with themselves.

  3. Cortez McLaughlin on

    Gabby Union in deed has the right to color her hair blond or any color. However, she must be ready to take the heat because black women are not naturally born with blond colored, white textured hair. I am just saying!!!!

    • And while we are discussing black women’s hair, I’d like to add that most black women who dye their hair “blonde” look foolish; not to mention the “weaves” or “extensions” in their hair. Most of their weaves look like straw/a bird’s nest. If you cannot afford to get a “good” weave, you should accept your own hair and work with it. It’s not a good look on everyone. I’m just saying…

  4. There are black people that are born with blonde hair and blue eyes(research it). If people start dying there hair orange then who are they trying to be like then? People only want something to talk about to feel better about themselves. It’s nothing wrong with dying your hair any color you like or for whatever reason you like. Get a life of your own and shit will go smoother instead of adding others “problems” to yours.

  5. Stupidest story yet,who the hell cares if she dies her hair?I didnt know it was race related,lmao..
    I think it looks great,but then again I am white so what do I know..
    Sometimes black people read waaaay to much into stupid shit,Know wonder they cant get passed things.
    This ” supposed” magazine ALWAYS focuses on the negative

  6. What does it mean when a brunette white woman dyes her dark hair blonde? What does it mean when a straight haired white woman uses a perm to curl her hair? It’s not that serious. Women like change and there are many black women born with sandy blonde and red hair. As long as it compliments your skintone and isn’t over the top I think it’s all about preference and change

  7. I have colored my hair nearly every color. Right now, it does happen to be blonde. If this is all it takes to promote such delusions, as a change in hair color…. Then you were not sane initially. Its really no more than a fashion choice.

  8. I’m a hairstylist and I totally disagree with some of these responses. Being versatile is an options. I love the fact that we (black women) can display our fashion sense any way we choose and it doesn’t necessary mean we want to be white. Let’s stop being so judgemental of each other and try lifting each other up.

  9. I think people are making this too big of a deal not to start any mess but if it was A lighter skinned girl who died her hair no one would even notice but since she’s darker skin people want to assume she’s trying to be white but does it really matter who cares it’s her hair let her do what she please:-)

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