Lupita Nyong’o Calls Out Magazine for Photoshopping Natural Hair

Lupita Nyong’o Calls Out Magazine for Photoshopping Natural Hair

“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."

Lupita Nyong’o Calls Out Magazine for Photoshopping Natural Hair

Mainstream magazines have always been considered influential when it comes to the standard of beauty many cultures adapt, which is why representation is so important. Actress Lupita Nyong’o understands this more than anyone, and is calling out one publication for photoshopping her naturally kinky coils into a smoothed-out style she didn’t recognize.

In a lengthy Instagram post, the Oscar-winner spoke on embracing her natural hair and skin complexion, despite being taught to believe she was less-than beautiful in her youth.



“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, coiled hair are beautiful too.”

She continued, “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.

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

A post shared by Lupita Nyong’o (@lupitanyongo) on

The Black Panther star went on, “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.”

Photographer An Le has responded to the call out, apologizing profusely for the insensitive edit.

“I’ve had some time to reflect on my part in the incident involving Grazia and Ms. Nyong’o. I realize now what an incredibly monumental mistake I have made and I would like to take this time to apologize to Ms. Nyong’o and everyone else that I did offend. Though it was not my intention to hurt anyone, I can see now that altering the image of her hair was an unbelievably damaging and hurtful act. As an immigrant myself, it is my duty to be an advocate for the representation of diversity of beauty in this industry. I will demonstrate this in my work even more going forward. My altering of her image was not born out of any hate but instead out of my own ignorance and insensitivity to the constant slighting of women of color throughout the different media platforms. There is no excuse for my actions. I deeply regret the pain I’ve caused Ms. Nyong’o, a woman I’ve admired for quite some time now. Again, I would like to say I’m deeply sorry to everyone I did offend. I want to thank Lupita for addressing this important issue.”





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