Halle Berry had to shave her 12-year-old daughter’s hair it got so matted

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Halle Berry was on The Tonight Show, which is a joy to watch lately. She is promoting her new fitness and wellness app called respin, we talked about it yesterday in the post about her at-home fitness recommendations. She gave a lot of excellent quotes to Fallon, I think people are really opening up now that we’re all stuck at home. Halle said things are going pretty well at home, but that her son, Maceo, 6, has a lot of energy and her daughter Nahla, 12, needs help with grooming.

Who are you with?
I’m quarantined with my two children, my two dogs. My daughter is fine, she hopes quarantine never ends. She’s a loner, she loves being nestled in. My son who is six is a madman right now, he’s bouncing off the wall. We almost needed a couple trips to the hospital, but I’m like ‘we ain’t going to the hospital!’

What happened with your daughter?
We are swimming every day, we are so fortunate that we do have a pool. It’s one of the only ways we get exercise. My daughter is 12 so every time I go to comb her hair she’s like ‘no don’t touch me, I can handle it.’ Two nights ago we’re doing homework together [Fallon’s youngest daughter Winnie, 6, interrupts and Halle bonds with her over their dresses] she goes ‘mom, I’m scared to tell me this. Touch the back of my head.’ All her hair, which is past her shoulders, has shrunken up into a tight ball that feels like matted fur. I can’t get my finger in it, I’m pulling it. [Conditioner didn’t work.] I had to shave it off. She was not cool with that, but it was our only option. Now she gets it. She’s bald in the back.

[From Jimmy Fallon on YouTube]

They talked about DNice’s club quarantine, which Halle called “amazing” and said feels real. It does! I have been watching him on TV as background. (Get the IG Stories extension for Chrome and you can cast live Instagram events.) She said it teaches her kids old school music. Halle also told a story about Pierce Brosnan doing the Heimlich on her when they filmed Die Another Day. Apparently she choked on a fig when they were filming. She’s promoting her directorial debut, Bruised, which she also stars in. She’s playing a disgraced MMA fighter. It was supposed to come out this fall. Her charity is the Janesse house, which she’s worked with for years.

As for her daughter’s hair, I remember my kid thinking he didn’t need me at that age either, but the lessons he learned were not that hard. I feel bad for Nahla! That’s got to be so hard to have to get your head shaved at that age.

Here’s Halle’s interview!

Halle and her kids in August:
Halle Berry enjoys the Malibu Chili Cook-Off With her family

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27 Responses to “Halle Berry had to shave her 12-year-old daughter’s hair it got so matted”

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  1. Sarah says:

    My mum was fed up with fights and tears over brushing my (quite fine, easily tangled) hair when I was a maybe 10/11 so said fine, you do it. Anyway, a couple of weeks later we had to cut out two big matted patches behind each ear!

  2. JanetDR says:

    I well recall a hair trauma when I was 12. I grew up at the base of a ski area and that year Christmas vacation was especially great. I would ski all day and at late as the slopes were open. I remember falling into bed the first night not even taking my hat off. The next morning there was nothing to be done except put my hat back on and go! What a rat’s nest it was in after a few days! I worked it out eventually. I think my sister helped, but I only recall the horror I went through when my crush playfully pulled my hat off as he went by 😱!

  3. Audrey says:

    Yep, 11 years old, had a rat’s nest at the starting at the crown of my head and had to chop it off. Must be a right of passage for girls! LOL!

  4. Christina says:

    My daughter and Nahla have the same hair type. I remember those days. Bless you, Halle!! Kids at 12 are insufferable because it’s developmentally time for them to separate from you emotionally, to be more independent, and you can’t make anybody do anything.

    Grooming is something they have to be shamed into by their peers if they refuse to listen to you, or you can try taking away something they like, but that doesn’t work with a kid who is determined to make you look like an idiot.

    For my kid, it was showering and deodorant at the age. Hitting and screaming at kids just leaves them worse off emotionally. Better to let peers and shame do the work for you: “You stink.” “Why do you smell like that all the time?” “Mom, I have this big ball at the back of my head”. That sticks the lesson in their brains and you don’t have to repeat yourself over and over, not about that, anyway, lol!

  5. Lisa says:

    Yeah that is why my mom never let me do my hair at that age. You live you kearn.

  6. GreenBunny says:

    The good thing is that the lesson is learned while in isolation so she doesn’t have to go to school or even go out and will have time to grow some of it back.

  7. Fleur says:

    Awww! Nahla is dressed EXACTLY the way I dresses at 12! Girl, I get it. I was also a lone wolf kid, reading and swimming. I remember twelve with painful clarity. I didn’t really get comfortable with myself again until 18. I also had incredibly good looking parents and a handsome older brother—- I felt like such an awkward duckling for years.

    It’s a hard age. I’d tell any 12 year old to keep reading books, keep swimming, while other tweens are messing around, you’re becoming exactly who you’re meant to be.

    Also I shaved part of my head once. If you’re healthy, it grows back really really quickly

  8. Amelie says:

    Omg this reminds me of how I got a brush stuck in my hair as a kid hahaha! Ugh it took me forever how to deal with my hair because as a preteen when puberty hit all of a sudden my slightly wavy hair became SUPER wavy. It took forever to brush out all the tangles as a kid, it sounds pathetic but I couldn’t even do a ponytail on my own until well into middle school because I was so overwhelmed by my crazy hair.

    Anyways sometime in elementary school I guess I wandered into my mom’s bathroom or she left a brush in our bathroom, some purple round bristle brush (the kind they use in hair salons). I had the bright idea to use it on my dry hair to brush my hair out and of course I had no idea how to use it. It got stuck in my hair right away and of course I went crying to my mom who couldn’t get it out either. Before using the scissors, my mom put me in the bathtub, wet my hair, and put probably an entire bottle’s worth of conditioner in my hair to work the brush out of my hair. It worked and I was able to escape with no shaved bald spot or awkward haircut. I’m sorry Nahla was not so fortunate!

    • BeanieBean says:

      I got one of those round brushes stuck in my hair, too, only I was a little older. I was trying to do the fancy hair salon type thing with a blow dryer & that round brush, and got the darned thing stuck in my hair. Took forever, and a lot of hair loss, to get that brush out.

    • manda says:

      I got a round brush stuck in the front of my head, but was able to cut it to bangs. Literal bangs trauma

      Also, my hair never got matted, but my mother cut it off when I was like 9 because she said I didn’t take care of it and I have never forgiven her for that. My hair is now down to my waist, but I take care of it

  9. Seraphina says:

    I literally am there with my long haired cat who LOVES being outside.

  10. Chelly says:

    Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope. To let a kids hair get this bad is crazy. Nope. Idc, nope.

    • manda says:


    • Ellie says:

      Yes, hold your 12 year old down and forcibly brush their hair after they’ve asked for some independence. That is a brilliant plan. Nahla will learn a lesson this way.

  11. Annaloo. says:

    Nahla is TWELVE now???!

    Omg, where did the time go

  12. lucy2 says:

    Oh my goodness, I still think of her daughter as a toddler! Cool to see Halle is directing now.
    I have straight, fine hair (always wanted curly, sob) and multiple times as a kid would comb the top only, leaving a tangled mess underneath. Ouch.
    It may happen again, give how infrequently I’ve combed my hair during quarantine! But it’s been a great time to train my hair for less shampooing.

  13. TheOriginalMia says:

    Wow! I haven’t seen Nahla in years. She’s gotten so big.

  14. Carmen says:

    Wow, that child got so tall! He mom needs to show her how to take care of her hair. Brush it out every night. Don’t do it for her, show her how to do it herself. The only way her hair could get that matted up is if she wasn’t taking care of it over a long period of time.

  15. mimi says:

    So much I could say about her probably not teaching her daughter the proper way to care for her hair. Swimming unprotected is a definite no-no with Nahla’s hair texture and Nahla should know that at her age. I remember Halle claiming Gabriel abused Nahla and mentioned something about her hair being damaged, so I am sensing a pattern here even though the girl is older now. Interesting that she paints it as Nahla being independent and hard-headed (which I’m sure is true) rather than neglect when she’s the parent in charge. I have a 13-yr old daughter and I’ve made sure she understands what she needs to do to keep her hair healthy, so I am coming from a place of experience.

    • AMM says:

      As a mother of a preteen I’m torn on this. I did just shave my oldest boys head during quarantine because he wasnt properly caring for his newly long hair. As a parents it’s our job to make sure they are taking care of themselves ,obviously, but grooming is oddly tough for some kids. Hes been brushing his teeth for his whole life and wearing deodorant for over a year, and yet I still have to remind him every single day to do those things. Sometimes you gotta let them learn the hard way. Her daughter insisted she could handle her own grooming and then didnt do it. Lessons learned.

    • osito says:

      I think swimming in chlorinated water unprotected should be a no for all hair textures, unless you want green-tinged, straw-like hair that breaks easily.

      My mom really tried to teach me how to do my hair “properly” as a kid and teen, but some things just never stuck: I *never* figured out how to work with my relaxed hair texture, and it wasn’t until I got to wash-and-go natural in my late teens that I started to get a handle on it. I’m in my 30s and still can’t do an at-home blowout, though, and my super-fine baby hairs like to start dreading up by the end of every day. For as much as my mom worked with me on my hair, it wasn’t until I was in total control of it that I learned what it needs to stay beautiful and healthy. Maybe Nahla will be the same way.

    • Tanya says:

      Eh. My kids swim. It’s not great for their hair, but they love it. I’m honestly glad that they’ve decided that it’s worth giving up “good” hair to do something that’s good for them and that they enjoy so much.

    • Carmen says:

      My hair is like Nahla’s, very fine and very curly, but it never matted up in the water to the point where I couldn’t get a comb through it. The only way that could happen is if her hair was badly matted before she went into the water. Her mom should have showed her how to care for it. Comb it thoroughly and put a good conditioner on it before you dive in. It helps a lot.

  16. Meg says:

    I remember at a sleepover around nahlas age with friends commenting as I brushed my hair how much of a pain it was to get out the tangles and they pointed out starting from the bottom and working my way up. My mom had always started from the top so I did too. It was a huge relief how much easier it was and my friends looked at me like I was crazy that my mom hadn’t heard of it before.

  17. Anna says:

    Yup! lol! Same hair and situation at that exact age. It was four days in summer at my aunt’s and they had a pool. Ended up having to get it chopped all off. Three decades later and I’m sitting here with hair matted in the back of my head again. 😉 lol!

  18. Natasha says:

    Swim cap?

  19. Holly hobby says:

    Wow her daughter is so tall now. I still remember her as a little girl.