The entertainment industry has the tendency of white-washing Black talent so they fit the mold of how an acceptable Black should look. Most times, entertainers have to compromise things like their hair, weight, and style to be noticed or taken seriously. This grueling initiation process is usually over once the artist reaches a level of success in their career that allows them to make their own decisions as far as their image goes.
Before singers Chloe X Halle became the mega stars we know to day, they were young women heading to auditions in side ponytails and knitted hats. Both filled with tremendous talent, they’d be turned away from their auditions because casting directors didn’t care for their natural look. In an interview with Tina Knowles, the sisters recall a time in their career where they had to cover up their loccs to land roles.
“We would go on auditions for these different roles and so a lot of the feedback it would be, ‘Oh we like you guys but we don’t want to see the locs,’” Chloe said. “So the solution was to you know, get a wig to go on these auditions with.”
Succumbing to the pressures of the industry, Chloe X Halle took the advice and wore the wigs. “We got played okay!” Halle said. “Some lady put Troll wigs on us. She was telling us it was the right hair. ‘This is what everybody wears. This is the real deal.’ We look back at the pictures? We looked like Trolls.”
Now years into their careers, Chloe X Halle have left their wigged past behind them. Both sisters rock their natural hair proudly. They’ve stepped into their own in a way that is inspiring to women of all ages. I am so happy Chloe X Halle told the story of how they had to change distinct parts of themselves to be viewed as acceptable in tHollywood’s eyes. As the world makes an attempt to be more inclusive, we’re also seeing a small shift in societal beauty standards. Don’t get me wrong, white-washing still happens, the only difference is now Black people are speaking up against it, forcing diversity to happen.