Thandie Newton’s Curly Hair Was Deemed “Ghetto” By Nuns

Thandie-curly_3121557cTo be a mixed-race young girl growing up in England is to be, at times, outcasted because of your differences, according to Thandie Newton’s personal account. The actress and founder of Thandie Kay, a beauty blog that educates a diverse audience, recalls people in her life having difficulty accepting “my skin colour or my hair,” including teachers at school.

“I remember getting ready for class photos when I was six or seven,” she writes. “My mum braided my hair. For her, it was the neatest, prettiest style, the equivalent of having your hair freshly cut and styled. I went to the best school in town, which was run by nuns, and they wouldn’t let me have my photo taken because of my hair. I think they thought it was a bit ‘ghetto’, though we didn’t really know what that meant. It was absolutely not ‘ghetto.’”

Although she details her self-esteem issues attached to these prejudice experiences, which resulted in her chemically relaxing her curly mane, she does explain blossoming into a place of confidence about her overall beauty.


“As for my hair, now I wear it however I want – I can wear it big and curly or blow-dry it straight, if I like.” She adds: “I’m working on a project at the moment and they’re gasping for me to have it curly, because they love me, and what beauty boils down to is people.”

Thandie’s inclusive outlook on beauty is a viewpoint that’s been pushed for years, and what’s awesome is that hers and the many voices who agree with her are finally being heard.

“I never thought, as a girl in the 1970s, that the beauty industry would become as diverse as it is now,” she writes. “But it can still go further. There will be a time when different skin tones won’t even be a discussion point: it will just be beauty, that’s it.”

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About The Author

A New York-based editor who's currently transitioning her hair to natural. Protective styles have now replaced all of her best friends...