Khloe Kardashian is the latest in her famous family to take on a Black hairstyle. The reality television star tweeted and then deleted a photo of herself in Bantu knots with a caption calling herself “Bantu babe.”
She later replaced it with another photo.
I like this one better ☺️ pic.twitter.com/yUJfKjEoQz
— Khloé (@khloekardashian) August 9, 2016
But Kardashian could not escape criticism, and Black Twitter let her have it.
@IGoByAlice expected white YouTube beauty gurus to jump on the look and give Kardashian all the credit.
Cant wait for those white YouTube gurus to make a tutorial on this innovative "Bantu babe" look that khloe started pic.twitter.com/MzXL3WQcjd
— Salone Titi (@IGoByAlice) August 9, 2016
Claire called out the former TV host for her lack of African lineage.
— hoeslay (@hoeslay) August 10, 2016
Many of the criticisms were based on Bantu knots being an “unprofessional” hairstyle on Black women. Yet once the California native tried it on, it became fashionable.
Khloe kardashian can walk around with "bantu knots" and its hip but if a black woman wore it to a job interview, its "unprofessional"
— Claire (@lilmisshaitian) August 10, 2016
@GotThatFaceDoh pointed out the hypocrisy aimed at Rihanna for wearing the hairstyle to the iHeart Radio Music Awards in 2014. She also donned them for a magazine shoot a year later.
Rihanna got dragged for having Bantu knots & now Khloe Kardashian has these "mini twisted buns".. ok
— #ThickLivesMatter ⚢ (@GotThatFaceDoh) August 10, 2016
@caramelcakesx also discussed the double standard between Black and white women wearing the hairstyle. She pointed to Blac Chyna – Kardashian’s soon-to-be sister-in-law – who wore the look in April. The user also disappointingly acknowledged the praise white women get for wearing Black styles but knew African-Americans would be called “ghetto” for wearing them.
Let a black woman wear braids, Bantu knots or dreads they're deemed "ghetto" but a non BW gets praised for having the SAME style… Smh…
— Coconut Oil❤️ (@caramelcakesx) August 9, 2016
Arlett took the time to show what authentic Bantu knots look like.
Tired of yall saying Khloe Kardashian got bantu knots so here are some REAL bantu knots done neatly. pic.twitter.com/yxqhdSRuXr
— arlett (@foreverarlett) August 10, 2016
@WeTheBroadCast advised Kardashian to look to Blac Chyna for style tips.
— The Broad-Cast (@WeTheBroadCast) August 10, 2016
@30bcCleopatra summed it up in an imaginary exchange between Black people and white people, covered in cultural appropriation.
Black People:They're called,"Bantu Knots"
White People: They're called,"Mini Buns"
— AUGUST 12 (@30BCCLEOPATRA) August 9, 2016
@Neo_url called out Kardashian for possibly believing Bantu knots are only a hairstyle. She is alluding to the fact that Bantu is a colonial word used to describe the Zulu people in Africa. Atlanta Black Star reported Bantu is used to distinguish the people who speak the dialect of the same name. The hairstyle named after the group of more than 10 million Africans has been worn by Black women as a protective hairstyle since time began.
Does. She. Even. Know. What. Bantu. Means. Or. Does. She. Think. It's. Just. A. Hairstyle.
— Blocking Champion (@Neo_url) August 9, 2016
This is not the first time a member of the Kardashian clan has come under fire for wearing a Black hairstyle. Earlier this year, Kim Kardashian was credited with “boxer braids” while rocking what are actually called cornrows.