This Is The Inspiring Reason Behind Taraji P. Henson's Big Chop

Hairstylist Tym Wallace says her hope is that Black girls won't feel "defined by what society paints as beautiful when it comes to a Black woman and her hair."

Taraji P. Henson is fearless when it comes to experimenting with cut and color.  Although the actress has been busy since the end of awards season, she's making headlines for her latest haircut: a short, honey blonde pixie with tapered sides. The Proud Mary star eventually took to Instagram, debuting the new style herself:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVp86NNjZct/

It's been a minute. She's been busy AF!!! 👀💇🏾💋💋💋

A post shared by taraji p henson (@tarajiphenson) on Jun 22, 2017 at 1:36pm PDT

RELATED: Taraji P. Henson's Senior Picture is What Throwback Thursday is All About

In an interview with Refinery29, Henson’s hairstylist Tym Wallace opened up about the redefining hair journey Taraji has been on these past few months. While she opted for an undercut a while back, the actress decided to keep going shorter with the cut and let her natural curls flow free.

Henson, whose natural hair at one point reached down past her shoulders, only rocked short styles in the form of weaves and wigs. Tym says that this time around, she decided to try something new. 

RELATED: Subscribe to our daily newsletter for the latest in hair, beauty, style and celebrity news.

"It's great to see a woman of her stature embrace her hair, and [cut] it so short," he said. "There's a difference between wearing a natural textured wig or weave, and actually wearing your natural hair. She's showing that she's all for the Black girl magic — showing these young Black girls that you are not defined by what society paints as beautiful when it comes to a Black woman and her hair. That was the main force for me."  

Tym says she’s opted to go even shorter since posting a video thanking fans for her BET 'Best Actress' Award.

RELATED: You Have To See Taraji P. Henson's New Hairstyle

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVzZVCOjGE3/

Thank you is NOT enough!!!! @bet @iamdebralee #TheCookieMonsters ❤️💋💋💋

A post shared by taraji p henson (@tarajiphenson) on Jun 26, 2017 at 5:38am PDT

“Trust and believe, we will definitely be throwing wigs on with this," Tym emphasized. "Some looks will require a different feel. But right now, we're gonna rock this out."  We can’t wait to see what she'll do next! 

SHOW TRANSCRIPT

Blair and today on Essence Live, we're talking to Megan Good about being a Hollywood sex symbol and a Christian. Plus our editors are giving us all the tea on the new edition story. But right now, these are the biggest stories you're buzzing about today. [MUSIC] What's really good Melania Trump? First we heard almost nothing from her during the presidential campaign, then news surfaced that her stepdaughter Ivanka may be assuming the real duties of a first lady, and now this. Watch this clip from the inauguration where Melania's facial expression quickly changes after her husband turns around. And that was that. Okay. You should at least be happy you're now the first lady. No? But, of course, Twitter has a couple of theories. At Juice216 tweeted, "trump beating Melania **** bruh." Mmm. At Jtrathgeber posts, "Blink twice if you need help Melania." And one more from at Bpearson3031 tweeted I feel you Melania girl. I feel the same way and I don't have to sleep with him. [MUSIC] Okay. So I guess it's real now. Barack and Michelle Obama are now officially private citizens. But if you're already missing them as much as we are and want to keep their legacy going you can now get involve with the Obama Foundation. The Obamas are asking all American to contribute ideas to the upcoming Obama Center in Chicago. You can visit obama.org now to get a full biography and timeline for the family, details on Obama's biggest accomplishments as president, and to donate funds to the building of the Obama Presidential Library But our favorite part of the website all the beautiful photos on their eight years in the office. It was all good a week ago, I tell you. [MUSIC] What a difference a year makes. The Oscar nominations are out and black people got recognized in just about all the major categories. There's Mahershala Ali and Naomie Harris for their amazing acting performances both Denzel and Viola for Fences, Ruth Negga for Loving and Moonlight, and Hidden Figures for Best Picture. But wait a minute. Where's Taraji? Do you think it's strange that her film Hidden Figures and costar Octavio Spencer were nominated but the star of the film was not? Let us know now using #EssenceLive because we're talking all about it and Slade or Shade next. It's Tuesday, January 24th and Essence Live starts now. [MUSIC] Welcome to To Essence live, the best live show on the Internet if we must say so ourselves. I'm your host Dana Blair and today's show is going to be pooping as always so you can always talk to us using #essencelive or email us if you don't want to come onto the show to sound off on topics like Excuse me, the sound of on topics on Essence Live at essence.com. All right, we're gonna kick things off with a little Slayed or Shade. Joining me today, we have media personality and digital host for Hot 97, Scotty B. Hi. Comedian host of Black **** Podcast, Dia Robinson. Hey. And Essence's senior manager for integrative marketing and founder of Society 101, Rondell Holder. What up. All right everyone, we're gonna get on to it. There's a lot of personality sitting on this sofa. All right, solve the equation, bomb movie about black girl magic plus a stellar performance by [UNKNOWN], should equal and Oscar nom, right? Wrong, as I mentioned in today's hotlist despite Taraji doing her thing and hitting figures, she was overlooked for an oscar nomination. Alright panelists what are your thoughts did Oscars get it right? Slayed or shade? One, two, three. Shade,shade we have our first full list shade of the 2017. Why were you hesitant about that shade? Well, it was shady. Of course I think it was shady. But I also feel like I don't think she was, she deserved it. Okay. I mean, I've seen all the movies, I've seen all the movies, I love Hidden Figures, but I just felt like Out of the nominations that I did see, it was, she could have, it was good. It was a good movie. I love Taraji. It doesn't take away from the film by having fresh air about your opinion. It was good. I just. Okay. Hadiyah? I think is way shade, because you know, it's just one of those things. It's so many black people getting awards. It's like all right We can't give them all. So somebody's gonna have to take this [INAUDIBLE]. It's just going to have to be what it's going to have to be. Chose the right [INAUDIBLE] They was just like that, she know how to take it, and be supportive, they knew that she wasn't going to flip over no tables, start no fights, they was like you know well she can take it. But she's had a nomination before. For [INAUDIBLE] in Burton. So She should've won that. She should've won that. yes. That was gonna be my point, i mean the movie is Epic, it's a great movie. Mm-hm. I don't think that particular role was the role to win. Right. But I would have just enjoyed seeing another speech because she give me a life. Yes. When you get that speech, you'd be like, you feel a spirit to go on like to be more days as you get that. That's what I want to do. Looking forward. Don't worry. [UNKNOWN] You had a definite Taraji crush over- [LAUGH] Yeah. You have a definite crush. Kayla, what does the folks saying about the Oscar noms on Facebook? Hey, all. So the votes are coming in. And no sun, all shade. Uh-oh. So Tommy says she She was snubbed. Theresa Beauchamps says, we aren't always going to get the awards. That's why we create our own award shows. Victoria Warner says, yes, she made me believe that story. So shade, shade, shade coming down the road. Okay, nothing but the shade, all right. Story number two. All right. Chrisette Michelle has been getting dragged all up and down the social media streets for her participation in Donald Trump's inauguration. In response to the backlash, she released No Political Genius, which addresses the controversy surrounding her performance, and Spike Lee's decision not to use her music in any of his coming Netflix series. So Let's take a listen. [MUSIC] Everyone's mouth is on the floor. [LAUGH] So, panelist, on the count of three. Girls. I can't look at you. [LAUGH] Should be slay or shade Chrisette? One, two, three. Rodell didn't waste no time. I ain't got the time, man. I ain't got the time. Shade! So shade, Come on. Please, first of all, you're not about to give us one just lost one poem like you do something and say no ma'am, you knew you was wrong, you just shouldn't have did it, period. So you can't come back now and be like well, ha ha ha But, Snap, snap. I'm loving it. Go lay down. Lay down. Take yourself a nice little nap. Rhonda [LAUGH] You know what my issue is? Uh-oh, tell me. You know when you love an artist and you feel like you know them personally because you know their music and then who they are, it just totally does not match up. That's what that is to me. Like Chrisette Michele, I'm like, she gotta be deep, she gotta be about something, have some substance and you out here singing for Donald Trump? Of all people. Donald Trump is not worth any coin. Your career's a wrap b. [LAUGH]. Like it. Done. Feel like he got bamboozled? Got it. I'm trying, it's been a wrap though. [LAUGH] So this is what I'm gonna say, to do all this for a check, because that's all it was for, a check and you turned in your dignity for a check, that's what I don't really like and respect. On top of that, she's always been a rat, so- Wow. I mean, not always. She had Rick Ross joined, she was on the National Martin Luther King. Shout out to, so that was probably it but I read in a source that she said that she didn't want people protesting, she didn't want protests, she wanted us to focus on, on pushing our sons to be lawyers that we don't have, she's just full of s and I'm not Not the s. Full of ish, and I'm just not for it. I'm not for it girl, go ahead and make your coin. In another way. Kayla, [LAUGH] I'm ready for social this time. Before mixed, so Maya Edwards says shade, shady, shady. Gloria Sykes says do what you gotta do to get paid Karen Russ says, she shouldn't get any shade. I would have won $150,000 too, it wasn't like she had a stellar career. Ooh. Fact! [LAUGH] She could have brought it back, though. I feel like she could have brought it back. If she would have went up there and been like F Donald Trump and just dropped the mic. Everybody would have bought whatever she came out with. We would have bought that porn. That's a fact. We would have bought that porn. I wouldn't have bought that porn. [CROSSTALK] We would have GoFundMe her a whole new career. I'm telling you right now. Do you think it's all just a big distraction? Because Kanye also met with Trump, Steve Harvey. Do you feel like they're all on the same playing field? Yes. Because she actually Follow through and went through to inauguration, she's getting more criticism. No, they're all, they're all, it just wasn't invited. I feel like, They're not traditionally American. American. They're not traditional, in the brackets. They're not in the bracket. Yeah. Alright, moving right along. My good old home state of Louisiana is now officially the first state, I know, caress me slow, to enact the Blue Lives Matter law, which has made resisting an arrest considered a felony hate crime. The new law is intended to make cops, firefighters, and EMS personnel protected classes under the state's hate crime statute, but does this law do more harm than good? Panelists, is it a Slay or shade for Louisiana Blue Lives Matter law? Shade, shade, shade. Rondel, let me start with you. We'll start with me as a black man because here's what I'm trying to say the issue is and we've had this conversation Around everything. People saying black doesn't matter and they are concerned about all these other issues,is just an issue when police officers and other government official are being attacked. But the main issue that's even the stem of that issue is that you are killing us. So that's where it stems like police officer are protected by many other laws,you gonna add another reason for a corrupt police officer to feel like they can do whatever they wanna do. Mm-hm. That's not positive. It's just do another It's just another. It's a level on to an already existing issue. You're not fixing anything. Mm-hm Mm. Hadiyah? The thing is, is that we've watch the video at the video police we're like stop resisting arrest. And I do this like I'm not resisting arrest So- My hands are up, I'm standing still. The hands are up, standing still, or they knocked down. I mean, they've shot people and said, Stop resisting arrest. Like bro, I'm shot right now. How am I resisting arrest? So this just proves that, this is just like he said, another opportunity. For them to just be like I know we're gonna do some mess of stuff, so let's go ahead and further protect ourselves and I'll give you an opportunity to have anything to say, but meanwhile we once getting [UNKNOWN]. Right. Scotty. I don't even think this is to protect the lives matter thing. I think it's honestly to slight And disrespect Black Lives Matter. And that's what I think this is all about. This is petty and this is definitely shady. Because this is them trying to take a stand and trying to put their foot down and say yeah you still don't matter, for Blue Lives Matter. From the name on down to the law. Absolutely. And who's trying to fight the firemen when they come to the house? That's what I'm wondering, why are the firemen under this. I've never seen anybody fight a fireman. Please get in here. >.What? You better not put that Oxygen in me. [LAUGH] I'm never saying that. [LAUGH] I'm never saying that. I don't want it. I don't want it. [LAUGH] Kayla what's going on in social media? Manet Champagne says, LA throwing shade as always. Debra Trina says, shade only in the black community where we worry about this. Crystal Wood says, whose interpretation of resisting arrest are we gonna use? This is the problem with the new law. Sad. And I think that's the biggest issue. Cuz we were talking about it of course before the show, and it's like that's a blanket statement, resisting arrest and it's very hard and everything's left open to interpretation. It seems like it might make things a little bit worse. Thank you all for joining us And always keeping it real, each of them one of these crazy kids on the sofa. Keep those comments coming. Use #ESSENCELIVE and we'll shout you out a little bit later on this show. Coming up, I sit down with Meagan Good to talk relationships, marriage and her new lifetime film. But recently, we caught up with attendees at the Women's March on Washington to find out how they're keeping their black girl magic alive in the new era of Trump. Take a look. [BLANK_AUDIO] [NOISE] I plan to continue my Black Girl Magic by setting goals especially my New Year's resolutions that I have set for myself. And I feel as though the presidency doesn't affect how I'm going to prosper and how I'm gonna push on and how I'm gonna continue. I plan to graduate within the next year and I already think that that's an accomplishment as a black female. And from there, I plan to move forward with my career. Preserving myself, making sure that I advocate, making sure that I reach out and Really a person that I normally wouldn't speak to, I'm gonna speak to them. If I see something positive, or if I see something that might be funny, I'm gonna choose to engage more and really just kind of advocate for what I represent visually, and spiritually, and personally, so that people will know that I can be approached too at the same time. I plan to continue my black girl magic by always remembering my foundation and that I come from a family of strong, incredible black woman and I'm continuing to inspire other black women and women of color. I think it's important, with the black girls magic, that with God all things are possible And it separates the lines of division. So I'm just happy to see all colors, all shapes. Women from all diverse backgrounds, occupations, coming together as one. Cuz that's the only way we're gonna survive is that we unify. And step on this division. So that's what makes the magic. You're watching Essence Live, I'm your host Dana Blair and in studio with us right now is the star of the new Lifetime movie, Love by the 10th Date. Please welcome Megan Goode back to Essence Live. Family, hello, hello. Hello, hello. We're Essence, so we're always talking about dating especially here in the office, okay? And so this a great romantic film. I had a chance to preview it. What made this particular role stand out for you and you're like yes I have to do this.>> Man, when I first read the scripts. I instantly fell in love with Gabby. Ant it's funny because I have seen some people who have seen the trailer and they are like I feel like you played this character and think like a man. And I'm like no this is a movie like she is Really quirky, really offbeat, really a little delusional. Mm-hm. And a little bit crazy. And I think, she does, everybody in the cast, they all have those qualities where you know each one of those girls. Gabby is a dreamer and a hoper and completely optimistic about life. She's still got this childlike quality that hasn't allowed anything to Crushes vary you know. So, i just fell in love with her character. I fell in love with the other character story lines. I fell in love with the idea of not assuming that you're in a relationship with a man, just because you've gone on a few dates. Or you think he's your boyfriend but you have another conservation or you guys have already slept together or whatever is. And you just don't know. So the idea of waiting To ten dates to see, you know. If you can get the ten dates to go, that actually means you actually enjoy spending time together. It actually means that you should be working towards something. Did you ever envision in your single girl days that relationships becomes such a large part of your brand between you and your husband's book and being such an authority, if you will, of this space? Did you ever envision that that would be- No. In the future for you? I didn't. I went to my Early 20s I was in three serious relationships for years. And even when I was single I had the mentality I think a lot of young women have which is they kind of think their a boy. They want to be like, I make the choices, it wasn't him it was me and I'm in control and I can do it. Right. And it took me a long time to learn even when I was in a relationship, I was very, I had a lot of control of myself. I didn't fully a 100% give myself over to love because I had seen my parents split up and people that I look to like Hallie Berry whoever it was and I could see issues and I'm like she's once to be a [UNKNOWN] in the world. So in my mind I was like well a man is either always gonna cheat Or he's gonna leave and you have to be able to protect yourself and you have to be able to pick up the pieces. And so, I lived a lot of my 20s that way and it took me until my late 20s before I actually realized that I was kind of a coward and that my mentality and the reason for doing it was all based on On fear and all based on not being willing to take any chances and do not open myself up to anything a 100%- Uh-huh. In the first time that I kind of really really did I was disappointed you know. Right and so that was chased you the more fearful to try it again. Right. But then I have this like, I have to. Uh-huh. Cuz I've already been the other way you know I just kinda try again. The next time I try it again I been married for almost five years And congratulations. Thank you. We've watched you and your husband grow and your career grow. And we feel like you're family here at Essence. And I have to tell you that we saw, there's a video in a recent gospel event. Well, not recent, maybe a year ago, where some of the audience, it's like they ridiculed you. I can't think of the proper way to say it. And your husband came to your defenses. And it really upset myself and some of the other Essence staff members, I have to be honest with you To see the way you were targeted in that way. How did you feel in that moment, that it feels like sometimes folks won't let you grow. Especially when [INAUDIBLE] as a child actress, and now you're a woman. It seems as though people will not let you evolve or grow. How do you take that criticism. In that moment,it was hurtful,you know,because I have no doubt that she was saying what she honestly felt. I don't know if she was trying to hurt me ,I don't think that she was honestly but I do think that she tried to. You know, make an example in that moment, in front of everyone by humiliating me, in essence. And I just had to, if you watch the rest of that video, I just say to her, God bless you, if you really believe that I'm doing something wrong, pray for me. And also I think She said that God led her there, but God gives you wisdom to speak to people. And that was not using wisdom. But that's what it was in that moment. At the moment, it was hurtful. And there have been things over the years, whether it was the blue dress or- [LAUGH] Right, it was always something. A girl, rather a Halloween costume, it's Pretty much I know now at this point Im like, all right people are gonna come for me and I just have to live in my authenticity. Uh-huh. I have to live in my truth because when people come up to me on the street, and it's this girl who was like. You know, I've been told that I don't look like a follower of Christ. Or, I've been told that I'm not going to get into Heaven. I'm going to tell them that God thinks that I'm you know, what's the word, an abomination. Or whatever it is. Or, I've been bullied or whatever. Those are the people that I relate to. Those are the people that God made me for. Right. He didn't make me for everybody. Not everybody has to agree with me and not everybody. They has to like me, but we'll say to you is, if you really a child of god, you will love me, and i love you regardless to any stones you may thrown. Rather it's to me some of it, it could be very self righteous, and other times people just coming from their heart that's truly what they believe, and they feel that they're looking out for me and so. At the end of the day I just love the person. I love the stone thrower. I pray for everybody. It has given me an opportunity to build my character because it's easier to love people when they're kind to you. Do you feel that having been, a classified or type cast or sometimes as a sex symbol or as the pretty sexy girl, has that effected some of the roles that you've chosen or some of the roles that come across your desk? Yeah, yeah I mean, I think it's Gotten a lot better now, and I think all of it I attest to, even the celibacy at the time that I did it, brought transformation in my entire life, because I believe God honours sacrifice and he honors obedience. And I saw my career change, Change after that as well. And, I started off as a child actor, so coming into being 23, playing 16, kissing 16 year old Bow Wow. Right. It was like for me at that time was like, I need to show people that I'm a woman. I need them to understand I am grown. And then doing the "21 Questions" video I think was a real pivotal thing for me because it was a national commercial saying Right. she's grown. Right, right. You know, and So that was a strategic move. Yeah. Mm-hm. Yeah, and it's funny because my manager at the time was like no, I don't think you should do it, and I was like no I'm gonna do it because I need something to help push me over the edge and I had Biker Boys coming out, and- Mm-hm. But, long story short. What happened was it pushed me so far over the edge that they were like she's grown. And by the grace of God, thank you for thinking that I'm sexy, or whatever, but It hurt me by the time I was 26, 27 because I'm like I'm capable of so much more and they're like well we want to see you play sexy girl blah blah blah. Im like but I'm like what about Eve's Bayou? And What about all the things I've done in the past that I've shown that I'm capable of just being something besides the girlfriend of the love interest of whatever. Mh-imm. So I had to fight hard to get out of that show But the same token I'm thankful for it. I'm thankful for that season in life. And then I think that deception was really kind of the turning point. And then from that I haven't been stuck in that spot anymore, which is a blessing. And things are starting to really expand and open up and. Right now my main focus is action. So, I'm excited. I'm Developing Foxy Brown with Hulu as a TV show. Yes, I saw that. And she's another sexy character if you will. She's very strong. Yeah. What is it about Foxy Brown that you're like yeah it's time for this to come back and make a stand? Is it the political climate we're in? Yeah, yeah it is. Yeah? Because I keep, I say to my self I can post all day long. About Black Lives Matter, I composed all day long about who was the next hashtag and it makes me really sad. I composed anything, but what else can I do as an artist? How else can I use my platform, other than just speaking? And for me, Foxy Brown is an opportunity to give people To create a wish fulfillment. To have someone who is a vigilante for the people who are taken advantage of, who are struggling. Who have nobody to have their back or just shield it for them. That to me is what this character, this version of Auxie Brown in 2017 will represent. Do you have a conversation with your husband before you take a particular role? If it was like a love scene or maybe he wants you to do something A little nude. Well I'm not gonna do nude. Now would I do something that's it's where my top is off but my back is to camera. That's a difference. And I'm chest with another person I'm in the scene with, that's fine. But I'm not gonna do nudity, I'm not gonna show my breast. I'm not gonna show anything else so there will be no back shots. And the thing is, we don't really have to have conversations like that because we know, we respect each other's opinion. And I for the most part have the same comfort level that he does. I mean I let him know about it just so he knows when the scene comes up or when I shoot it that day. But we don't, he's very secure and very He knows who he married, and he knows that my job as an actress a lot of times is gonna entail me having scenes with the opposite sex. So, he's just cool about it. And it's awesome. Thank you so much for joining us here on Essence Live. Everyone out there in Essence Live land, you have to see this film. It's hilarious. Call all your girlfriends together, put on your pj's, pour some wine make a night out of it. Thank you so much Meagan, Yeah come back anytime. Don't go anywhere we have more Essence Live coming up next. Thanks for having me. [SOUND] So this bio pic is on BET and it is a very good BET production. I have to give them their kodus, round of applause. The quality is way up. It is so good. This is not some cheapy cheap lifetime. Like they through it together and like blah, blah, blah, blah. It's like. It's like, really good. I think everyone is gonna be really shocked by the betrayal of the actors too. Cuz you get to see a little bit of Bobby Brown story and some of the decisions that he made. ->> Yeah. In going solo. And then we also, we don't just go to see the group. We also get to see them in their solo endeavours. And how that ->> That needle back stories that we don't know anything about. The champ is here. You ready to do this? Do what Bob? Is Whitney Houston going to show up. I'm pretty sure she's going to show up. [CROSSTALK] I'm pretty sure that's like in the thing, like I've read somewhere that she was cast. She has to come. She has to. She has to pop up. She has to. At least for a background, I don't need whole another Whitney story. Yeah. Because we've saw the first one and that one was bad. I'm excited to see them delve into the whole messiness of the group. Yeah. I love anything messy. Just send me your drama, your messiness. Blow up her mentions, y'all. I just wanna hear Can You Stand the Rain. My god. When those, the birds start chirping. My god. [LAUGH] Your heart start beating all fast because you know what's about to come. And then they start doing the dance moves. Can You Stand the Rain is like, beautiful. Okay. [LAUGH] That's Sydney for you guys. Unemotional. Waiting for drama. Messy boobs. Find me on Twitter. [LAUGH] [MUSIC] You're watching Essence Live, I'm your host Dana Blair. Before we wrap, I wanna check in with you one last time on social media. Our girl Kayla's manning all of your comments right now. Hey KayKay. Hey. So, a lot of Megan Good fans are showing love. They love our interview with her. And a lot of comments still coming in for the Chrisette Michele performance. All right, Karen says, her career is a wrap for African Americans but overseas maybe she'll get paid. [UNKNOWN] says That she doesn't have to do what other back people tell her to do. So she's got some sympathy there. As far as Louisiana's bloom [UNKNOWN] Rebecca White says police need protection through a mental health policy, support and training if you really care about the work place safety. And Tanya Bowley says, you should buy your car a camera, too. If they got them, we need them, too. I thought that was funny. All right. Lots and lots of opinions. Thank you so much to everyone who commented on social. Thank you to Megan Goode, and of course all of our guests for coming through. And all of you for watching. If you missed any of today's show you can catch the replay shortly on essence.com and see all of our videos on our YouTube page. I'm Dana Blair. See you next week. Bye.
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