Teen Vogue drew the ire of #BlackTwitter again, after running an editorial about Senegalese Twists that featured mostly White and light skinned women. This all began when Elaine Welteroth, the magazine’s beauty editor, documented her trip to Rwanda, which ran online (with only Welteroth’s personal photos) and in print (with models). The central theme of the story was how her “Zoe Kravitz-inspired” Senegalese Twists taught her that hair can be a form of activism, or something. I started zoning out.
““Adopting this hairstyle became an integral aspect of drinking in the cultural experience as a first-time visitor to East Africa—women sported braids and twists everywhere. But I wasn’t sure how people would react back home in New York City,” wrote Welteroth in the piece.
See why I started zoning out? Have people in New York City really not seen Black women rocking braids?
Patra, anyone? Solange? Beyonce?
The print version of Welteroth’s feature had photos of various women rocking braids, or extensions as Black girls call them, like I said. However, aside from Zoe Kravitz and Zendaya (who was actually rocking faux locs, and not braids), the rest of the women were White women. There was not a Caramel Sundae, Chocolate Deluxe or Butter Pecan Rican in site. Really though? REALLY? In a story about a woman who went to the Motherland, where braids were invented, and how braids can be a form of activism (she actually wrote this), not one brown girl showcasing the range of our complexions. No diversity whatsoever. And once again, we’re being trolled by high fashion.
Peep some of the tweets:
There’s a lot more, but you get the point. Even more frustrating is that Welteroth, a Black woman, didn’t represent. There are already not enough editors of color at these magazines in the first place, and it seems that the ones who are there don’t get it either, or they don’t speak up. Smh.