Gabrielle Union talks wearing natural hair for the first time in a photoshoot


Gabrielle Union has been a hair acceptance advocate for quite some time. She recently did a PSA for the Crown Act, spoke about having black hair care and makeup professionals on sets and about teaching her daughters black hair love. She has even rebooted her hair care line for coily, kinky, and curly hair textures.

Union covers the Women’s Health October issue and she recently took to her Instagram sharing a video clip of herself behind the scenes at the photo shoot sans makeup or a wig. She says that it was a freeing experience to shoot a cover for the first time with her *gasp* natural hair. Here are a few quotes via People:

“These are #bts pics from my @womenshealthmag shoot. It was the 1st time feeling truly like myself in front of the camera. The me that my loved ones see everyday,” Union captioned the photos.

“The me that fights daily for my peace and the peace of others. The imperfect warrior thats lost more battles than I’ve won, but still keeps on fighting. At this grown ass age, I feel like I’m finally ME,” she continued. “And I can breathe. And as long as I have breath, my ass can keep fighting. @flawlessbygu got me rocking my own curls and feeling like a #flawlessbeauties 🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤🖤.”

Fans couldn’t be happier to see Union proudly showing off her natural, textured coils. “Being your true authentic self is where true beauty lies! #Truebeauty 🔥💯,” one person commented.

[From People]

I am here for how Gabrielle has been embracing herself fully. This can be such an inspiration for those on the fence about their natural hair. There are women who want to embrace their hair, but have years of ‘bad hair’ messaging to deprogram. Let’s face it BIPOC have been told for centuries that our hair is bad and unacceptable.

Granted, Gabrielle is stunning no matter what she does, but being labeled the beautiful one means it would take just as much courage to take the mask completely off. I have been following her on social media and enjoy how candid she has been not only about racism in Hollywood but anti-blackness in all its forms. I truly enjoy how real she is about her struggles with radical self acceptance and self-love. For someone who seemingly has it all, she is not afraid to be vulnerable and authentic and I’ll always celebrate that.

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22 Responses to “Gabrielle Union talks wearing natural hair for the first time in a photoshoot”

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  1. FHMom says:

    She is awesome. Her family is lucky to have her.

  2. Edna says:

    Love her natural hair. And their daughter is so Dwayne’s mini me.

  3. Eleonor says:

    Probably it’s offtopic, but I recently read an article about how all the skin treatments cosmetics and medical are tought for white people: as a latina I have always been told my skin doesn’t need too much protection, because you know “you are not white you are stronger”, but now I see how even doctors are not trained to treat my kind of skin correctly.
    And natural hair is beautiful!

    • StephB says:

      @ Eleanor, we need to talk about it!! Our skin is skin and can burn and be negatively affected by the sun! I had a dermatologist in Omaha, NE tell me she didn’t know how to address my skin needs because I’m black. I left with nothing, no recommendations, no products, no hope. Clearly white skin is all they study in school.

      • Eleonor says:

        I think it was Naomi Campbell that once said people were amazed by the fact that she can sunbathe like everyone else…and become darker.
        I have been adopted by an Italian family, and when I was a kid my mum wanted to protect my skin (it was the 80′s) and tried all the “normal” sunscreen, but I had bad reactions all the time, she took me to a doctor who told her my skin was more resistant (seriously? WTH?) and I DIDN’T NEED any protection!!!!

      • Eppy says:

        Yes, this is a problem – medical textbooks are heavily skewed towards white skin examples. Things have improved a little in very recent years, and a British medical student is writing/publishing a resource addressing this called “Mind the Gap”. Anyone who qualified a few years ago would likely not have covered many skin types in their education.

    • Geeena says:

      THIS. Also, skin cancer is rarer with darker complexions, but when diagnosed it’s almost always more advanced and more fatal than with lighter complexions. Moles and freckles aren’t noticed as often as changing and with all the misconceptions about who is susceptible to skin cancer, malignancies aren’t being looked for or monitored.

  4. Nanea says:

    It took me a long time to accept my hair as is.

    Now, whenever people think they need to comment – without me asking them for their opinion on anything, I just say “I can’t change the way my hair grows out of my head”.

    • Alana says:

      Nanea, I love this and I’m going to use it. I have curly, coarse, frizzy hair that was a constant source of stress when I was growing up and that even as an adult I try to “tame.”

      I’ve come a long way toward accepting my hair and treat it better these days–less heat styling! more moisture!–but I LOVE the idea of telling people (or telling myself) “I can’t change the way my hair grows out of my head.” Thanks. :)

  5. Roo says:

    I’ve always thought she was a beautiful woman, but the more I read about her and her family, the more I realize that beauty also comes from within. I think she’s an amazing wife, mother and activist and I am here for it!

  6. Snowslow says:

    Stunning!!!! What a force.

  7. Stacy Dresden says:

    Her hair in that header photo is just beautiful

  8. anp says:

    Gabby is beautiful!

  9. Betty says:

    I was in Sally’s last week picking up an order and saw her hair care line on display if anyone was looking for it.

  10. Melissai says:

    I love how Gabrielle is constantly evolving and share her journey. She and her family are beautiful! I’d like to see Hollywood take attention and cast her in more roles. Breaking In had a weak plot, but she was so good in that role!

  11. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I love love love natural hair. On everyone! She’s beautiful, and she exudes both inner and outer excellence now. Not that she never did, but looking at her and hearing her messages have given her this spectacular light… She’s glowing.

  12. emu says:

    she looks great!

  13. Yup, Me says:

    I’ve been loving her short cut. I also love how Gabrielle has, for so many years, spoken about things that have previously been taboo or hush hush – from her sharing her experiences being a survivor of rape, to how she speaks honestly about racism behind the scenes of many of these big name (stupid) shows, to lack of solidarity from white actresses to her own past as a hater. I’ve liked her for years and I really appreciate seeing her contiuously come into her own. She’s ever evolving.

    I wonder what ingredients are in her hair care line? Off to research…

  14. Detnow says:

    I’m a naturalista and it wasn’t by choice. I developed scalp problems that prevented me from continuing to use relaxers. That was seven years and honestly it too me half of that to get used to my natural hair and feeling comfortable with it. There’s so much baggage that black women unknowingly have on us about our hair. While there’s a lot more naturalistas than even a few years ago, there remains a lot of bashlash from those who make other hair choices.

    As for Gabrielle I would feel different if she wasn’t relaunching a natural hair care line. She admitted she didn’t roll it out correctly last time so all of this natural coils love just feels like a PR strategy to me. I work in marketing and PR so I recognize strategy when I see it.. A few years back she was pushing her hair extension line so it feels like she is going whichever way the wind blows her.

  15. Busyann says:

    As a black, young woman, I can tell you natural hair is a hard, painful journey. In middle school I was bullied for my natural hair, and in high school I started wearing micro braids. Then something happened, I dont know what exactly, but one day when I was 18 going on 19, I just said enough is enough and stopped with microbraids. I would relax my hair every six weeks or so, and did that for 3 years until one day. Ugh, I’ll never forget.

    I had a morning yoga session and called my black hair stylist to tell her, hey, my pores might be open, should I postpone, but she said no, come in. Bad idea. My entire scalp scabbed over and I lost half of my hair. That was the last relaxer I ever, will ever get. Years later, another stylist told me she suspected the black stylist told me to come in with my pores open on purpose. She thought that the stylist wanted my hair so short that I would have no choice but to get a weave because there was more money for her in that.

    Now its shampoo, conditioner, the flat iron. That’s it. I pin curl my hair every night and wrap it in silk. I’m 100% natural and my hair is gorgeous. It’s a lot like Ms. Union’s, but longer. Cute, curly, and sexy af and I love it. It’s not just white society that puts these expectations on women of color. We do it to each other. Im thrilled for this journey Gabrielle is on and the positivity she is bringing to other ladies out there.

  16. matkinson says:

    I love her hair.