“Before I moved to LA, I was very deliberate about growing my hair out. I had my doobie goin’,” she shared during the most recent episode of ESSENCE Live.
“I had a full relaxer. When I looked at television. When I looked at film, those are the images that I saw in abundance, so I thought I had to be that.”
Watch the above clip to find out what changed her mind and how a haircut helped transform her career.
[BLANK_AUDIO] But we gotta talk about this style that you have. [LAUGH] First of all, I'm obsessed with you as an actress. [LAUGH] Your work is phenomenal, but your style? It's like on a whole another level. How do you describe your style? I feel like it's just an extension of me as an artist. All things, I sort of view the world in T-shirts and t-shirts rolled up in a t-shirt joined, it just never happens, you know? You don't strike me as a T-shirt and Adidas. I just, yeah because, it's like, if I'm wearing a T-shirt, I'm wearing nothing. It's not happening. [LAUGH] Nothing. [LAUGH] Right, so do you use a Stylist, or is it all you? I haven't used a Stylist yet, no. Wow. So this is you, you came up with? Yeah, this is all- Wow, incredible. Yeah, this is all me. I think because when you have such a A strong point of view, I think, about your own sense of style. You just don't know how to integrate. And I don't know how to articulate to someone else. Like, all right, can you pick out stuff that's, what? Right. [LAUGH] I don't, it's just something that's intrinsic. I go, I shop, and I just kind of buy things that speak to me. And I love that your fashion sense incorporates a lot of activism. I've seen you with Trayvon shirts or a Rosa Parks shirt and that's like, keep going. So, we have to talk about this bald head, which I love. [LAUGH] How do you think that influences the roles that you have selected or the roles that you actually take up in Hollywood? You know, I think it sets me apart, one. And I know there a lot of women who have bald head but I think every person sought of experiences there own beauty in a very unique and individual way for myself before I moved to LA. Shebang, and I did that because when I looked at television, when I looked on film, those are the images that I saw in abundance. And so I thought I had to be that in order to go to California and be accepted and be seen as somebody that is castable. And so I moved there, and there were no $20 doobies. That was not happening in California. It's like triple that. Yeah. And I couldn't afford that. And so essentially, it was out of me not being able to afford the upkeep of my hair that I was just like, I'm gonna cut this hair off. And I did it at a time where I thought I'd be down for a season. I was like, you know what? Maybe they won't be hiring or casting during the summer. So, I'm gonna cut my hair for the summer. And I cut my hair for the summer and what it did was two things. It made me experience myself. I saw my features for the first time. I saw my cheekbones. I saw my nose. Beautiful. I saw my eyes and That made me have a different relationship with myself, which then sent me into the rooms with a different sensibility about myself, like my spine was straight, and I sort of identified with myself in a much stronger way. I wasn't depending on the straightness of my bob. I just All I had was myself, and so I went into that room and gave them the fullness of myself. And it sort of started to change their minds, I think. What they had written on the page in terms of the description of the character. Once I walked into the room, I think they sort of did a head tilt. Right. And it was like Maybe this actually might work, you know, and so it began to fling open doors Which is sad because it was the real you, the authentic- Because it was the authentic me and I think at the time it was a thing that they hadn't seen a whole bunch of and I think they just wanted, you know, a Something that was refreshing and new. And so I was happy to- That is incredible. That is a lesson in itself. I mean, you're dropping so many jewels and gems. That is a lesson in itself. [BLANK_AUDIO]