Every so often, celebrities share a throwback photo and give a little peek into what their beauty routines looked like before all the fame. Sometimes, these photos elicit a laugh over how similar their styles still are — like Ariana Grande, who has seemingly always worn her signature high ponytail. There’s even the occasional surprise when stars reveal their natural hair colors or a texture that’s much different from what their hair looks like now. That’s how Tracee Ellis Ross shocked fans when she shared a vintage photo of herself with a straight style instead of her signature ringlets.
On July 15, the actor posted the photo on Instagram with the caption, “Remember when I said I used to beat my hair into submission? To try to make it be something that it wasn’t? I present to you Exhibit A. That little piece in the back is like, ‘I don’t know what you want me to do, but it’s a no from me regardless’ 😂.” Ross stares right at the camera while wearing a dark sweater and cream-colored scarf.
Her straight hair falls a little bit below her cheek with the signature James Brown-bump that so many Black girls dread. (Please don’t bump the ends, Mom!) Her bob is mostly brushed to the back with a few tufts of her bangs sticking out in the very front. Clearly, a lot has changed — except for Ross’s dark brown hue, which looks exactly the same as it does today.
There have been a select few times where Ross has worn straighter textures, mainly due to her acting roles and with the help of wigs. In early May, she shared a selfie wearing a bone-straight brunette wig for her leading role in the film The High Note, and even before that, in March, she shared another photo where she is wearing a long, chocolate-brown wig with bangs for Black-ish.
For many young Black girls like Ross, straightening your hair was a right of passage. Many of us can sadly relate to the burns, hisses, and smells from the hot combs or flat irons we used to get the slickest style. But while the natural movement has helped so many women see the beauty in their natural hair, it also doesn’t hurt to reminisce about the old days.
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