Jada Pinkett Smith and her hair have long been a topic of discussion, from her days of turning heads with her full, long, curly tresses to the complete absence of her mane due to an alopecia diagnosis.
However, Pinkett Smith’s lack of hair became a global spectacle when Chris Rock made an off-the-cuff joke at the 2022 Oscars where he compared her shaved head to a main character in the 1997 film “G.I. Jane.” The joke struck a nerve with Will Smith, who angrily stormed the stage and open-handedly slapped Rock, then returned to his seat and yelled, “Keep my wife’s name out your f—king mouth!”
For the most part, Pinkett Smith has refrained from speaking about the controversial moment, only sharing that she hoped her husband and Rock could one day find healing. But now, in a recent interview with The Guardian, she has opened up about what life and her journey with hair loss has been like in the past 11 months.
“I learned a lot about detachment,” she told the publication. “And I learned a deeper beauty within myself, being able to let my hair go.” She went on to share the lessons that she has learned from the “great teacher” alopecia. “It’s been a hard one, a scary one — because specifically as Black women, we identify so much of ourselves with our hair. And it was scary. I had to really dig deep and see the beauty of myself beyond my aesthetics,” noted the “Girls Trip” actress.
The “Hawthorne” star candidly spoke about her struggle with alopecia multiple times on her Facebook Watch show, “Red Table Talk.” Pinkett Smith, 51, said she had tried every treatment under the sun, from creams promising hair growth to steroids; but, in the end, she was ultimately forced to accept the reality of the disease.
In July 2021, Pinkett Smith debuted a bald head in an Instagram video where she showed off the new look. “Willow made me do it because it was time to let go BUT … my 50’s are bout to be Divinely lit with this shed,” the actress wrote in the caption. Prior to doing the big chop, she tested out various hairstyles, including shaved sides with box braids on top, curly low cuts, straight tresses trimmed into a pixie cut, and, of course, her signature head wraps.
In separate posts, she also showed fans the various bald spots she developed over time as well as a line that seemingly appeared with no clear cause. At times, part of embracing her bald head has included adorning it with jewels.