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‘It’s Crazy Thick, Healthy and Beautiful!!’: Sanaa Lathan Shows Off Natural Long Hair Three Years After Shaving her Head

Sanaa Lathan took to Instagram on Thursday, Dec. 3, to show off her naturally long hair just three years after she shaved her head.

The “Nappily Ever After” star went makeup-free for a selfie while she was in a bathrobe, and her long hair was on display.

Sanaa Lathan shows off her hair growth after chopping it off three years ago. @sanaalathan/Instagram

“Good morning. 3 years after shaving it off,” the actress, 49, captioned the post.

She also gave insight into how she was able to get her hair to grow so long. 

“Protective styles, braids and almost no heat. #nappilyeverafter 💇🏾‍♀️❤️,” Lathan said.

Viola Davis commented, “Beautiful♥️.”

Sanaa Lathan. (Photo: @sanaalathan/Instagram)

Several of Lathan’s fans also praised her for her natural hair journey.

“It’s crazy thick, healthy and beautiful!! 😍”

“Now I gotta shave my hair! ❤️”

“Dang! Her hair grows like a weed ♥️😍”

“It’s the natural beauty and hair growth for me😍🤎”

Sanaa Lathan, before and after. (Photos: @sanaalathan/Instagram)

Lathan shaved her head in 2017 while filming “Nappily Ever After,” a 2018 film adaptation of Trisha R. Thomas’ book of the same name. 

In the film, Lathan’s character Violet Jones was forced to stop associating her hair length with beauty. After a disastrous trip to the hair salon, where she had her stylist dye her natural hair blond, ultimately damaging it, the character gave herself a buzz cut in an emotional and drunken state.

The choice to buzz her hair on-camera rather than use a bald cap, also took an emotional toll on the actress offscreen. 

“The change also affected my style. Onscreen, Violet kept wearing her power dresses. But in my personal life, when I’m not going out, I’m very a no-makeup and sweats kind of girl,” Lathan told Glamour Magazine in September 2018. “At first with the bald head, I felt like a boy, so I started to dress more feminine. And when I went out at night, I always felt like I had to go a little sexier than I normally would. I’d wear a little bit more makeup, just to bring out the femininity of it. Not going to lie, I probably did a little more cleavage than usual too.”

She continued, “That’s the crazy thing, even despite all this, I know I’m still conditioned around beauty standards. I’ll still have days when I don’t feel pretty because I don’t have hair. I know it doesn’t make sense.” 

“I’ll start daydreaming about getting a weave, or think about putting on a wig. I actually have a bunch of wigs in my closet. I figured after I shaved my head for the show that I’d be wearing them a lot,” the “Love and Basketball” star admitted. “But it’s been a year, and I haven’t once.”

Lathan added, “Honestly, after 20 years of wearing weaves and wigs, I got tired of them. There’s a kind of a freedom that comes with giving them up — and not just a mental freedom but also a physical freedom. It’s hot and uncomfortable to wear wigs or a weave. That’s not to say that I’ll never do it again because I know I will.” 

Despite her choice to go natural, the actress said she wanted fans to take away the message that “it’s not that you should only have natural hair. It’s that natural hair is beautiful, and it should be an option.”

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