Tracee Ellis Ross plays Dr. Rainbow Johnson on ABC’s hit show Black-ish and her delightfully hippy character allows her to channel her more down-to-earth temperament. This gives her the ability to wear her curly hair in its natural state – a characteristic that Ross is quite content about especially since it helps to prove that natural hair can be beautiful in its most basic form.
Ross spoke to Entertainment Weekly about how liberating it has been to not have to style her tresses in a way that befits the labeled standard of beauty. “I think it’s huge that I’m wearing my natural hair texture on ABC in primetime. As Dr. Rainbow Johnson on Black-ish, I think my hair is part of the reality of this woman’s life. She has four children and is an anesthesiologist and a wife. She doesn’t have time to fuss with beauty, so her look is pretty simple. I’m very conscious of how I wear my hair on the show, and yet it’s the way I wear my hair as Tracee. You hire me, you hire my hair and you hire my ass. It’s all coming with me’.
I’m very conscious of how I wear my hair on the show, and yet it’s the way I wear my hair as Tracee. You hire me, you hire my hair and you hire my ass. It’s all coming with me.
Ross also recalls her mother [Diana Ross] who is famously rocked dramatically big hair every time she graced the stage. – “My mom is known for her big hair”.
Of course there was no way to avoid touching upon the moment Viola Davis took off her wig on How to Get Away with Murder. Ross acknowledges that the episode made an impact ands proves that we are now embodying a time when Black women are unapologetically embracing their natural hair without reservations after years of feeling inadequate and trying to accommodate the status quo.
I think what is important about Viola Davis taking her wig off on How to Get Away With Murder is that it illustrates that there is a mask that women are thought to have to wear. For Black women, it can be a more complex mask. Our culture has created a very limited view of what beauty is and can be. I think right now television is one of the places where women are pushing up against that and saying, “You know what? I don’t need to play this game anymore in order to be considered beautiful.”
Check out our gallery for some of our favorite Tracee Ellis Ross 2014 hair looks.
(Image Credits: Getty Images)