Johnny Wright

Johnny Wright is a celebrity hairstylist with over 30 years of experience in the industry. He was personal stylist to Michelle Obama during the Obama administration. Since 2016, he is a personal stylist to Tamron Hall, and says he owes his success to the early memory of watching his grandmother curl hair on their front porch.

Articles From Johnny Wright

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2 results
Smashing the Stigma Around Natural and Curly Hair

Article / Updated 10-17-2022

There are so many reasons we can feel negatively about our hair. People with natural, curly hair have not been seen as a thing of beauty for so long. Black women, especially, have been conditioned and treated like they are unattractive for having natural hair, and some women have internalized this hatred and adjusted their hair accordingly. A client of mine recently pointed out how she and her close friends often feel great pressure to process and straighten their hair due to their experience with men and dating and other negative influences within the community. So many men have been conditioned to want and be attracted to a particular representation of beauty because of the relentless standards set by the media. We have seen straight hair put out as the normal, acceptable standard for so long that it’s shaped entire generations. This, too, is trauma. Time to heal and embrace your natural beauty Unhealthy beauty standards have been ingrained in Western culture by systems underpinned by totally toxic ideas. But the time has come to heal. You need to reclaim your power and your beauty, and move beyond self-hatred. Refuse to buy into the toxicity. Refuse the negativity and trauma. I encourage you to be honest about who you are and only surround yourself with people who see you, support you, and celebrate you. This is your moment. This is the natural and curly haired community’s moment to step into the spotlight. Okay, look — I don’t want to spend time and energy on what the natural and curly hair community has or doesn’t have. I’m here to focus on building our community up, to help lift us up. That’s how we celebrate ourselves. Discrimination and misunderstandings about textured hair But the truth is the truth. Those of us who have natural hair already know it. But maybe you’re someone who doesn’t have textured hair and you’re reading this to understand a loved one. If you don’t already know, people who have natural and curly hair regularly face discrimination, misunderstandings, and misconceptions about their hair, all based in centuries-old racism that plays out in media, workplaces, and schools, among other institutions. Unfortunately, you can find so many examples of the systemic discrimination that Black and Afro-Latinidad people who have natural hair face. One national news story that absolutely enraged me when I saw it back in 2019 still stays with me today. Before his wrestling match, a 16-year-old high school student in New Jersey was told by officials that his hair covering didn’t meet “regulation standards.” They presented him with an ultimatum: cut his dreads or forfeit the match. Without so much as a word from his coach, the athletic director, or any other staff member from his school, he faced the decision alone. And there, in front of a whole gymnasium of his peers and members of the community, an official cut off his dreadlocks. He went on to win the wrestling match that day, but the humiliation of having his hair carelessly cut off due to policies that do not represent everyone equally may never fade. This student’s natural state of being was deemed unacceptable and deserving of immediate destruction. And this scenario, in some form or another, plays out in schools and workplaces across the country, literally every day. How dare they perpetuate this level of hatred and trauma on children — and adults! The natural and curly hair community faces unfair treatment and downright stupidity from some people and systems. Because these prejudices are so deeply ingrained, society, as a whole, can find even recognizing them difficult, let alone combating them. But I’m not going to stop trying. I’m here to do my part to stop the stigma, by building the natural and curly hair community up; by saying enough to the discrimination from others and the way we internalize it ourselves. It’s time to stop. And it’s time to heal. And that means everyone. Parents and guardians of kids with textured hair If you’re a parent of a textured-haired child, you need to know the reality of prejudices and racism, and then smash this stigma for your child (or other loved one). Natural and curly hair is beautiful and glorious. From the moment your child who has textured hair is born (or the moment you become their guardian), celebrate their beautiful hair at every turn. And if you have natural hair — or you want to wear your hair in its natural state but are fighting against these negative forces — then I’m here to tell you something: They might be powerful, but you are more powerful!

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Natural and Curly For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Cheat Sheet / Updated 10-17-2022

Natural and Curly Hair For Dummies gives you great guidance on how to keep your natural and curly hair healthy and looking great — from the ins and outs of washing and conditioning, to styling for fashion or protection, and even taking care of your child’s textured hair. This handy cheat sheet contains quick info that you can use on the fly, whether at home, shopping for natural hair products, or at the salon.

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