Video Review: Solange & Sampha “Don’t Touch My Hair”

Against a darkened background lit with a single spotlight, Solange swings her beaded braids. Her hair slicked back with Marcel waves, she rests her head on a young man’s shoulder as they stand by a column.

She crosses her arms while dancers walk inside the veranda. On the concrete, she swishes her brushed out curls while people stretch and bend towards one another. Against an emerald green background, four men cross their arms. Three women, with afros, spread butter on their bread.

In a white slip dress, she and another female dancer dance on the concrete. Outside a building, she and Sampha dance. She dances inside a dome. A few women swim in the pool. Solange stands in a white one-piece bathing suit with cut-outs by her lane.

Wearing a blue blouse, she and several women with looped braids stand up in a church pew. She waves her arm while three men stand with white buckets on their heads. Several women and Solange pose in burned orange crop tops and matching shorts against a scarred building. She swirls her hand, wearing a burned orange puffer coat while three men stand next to her.

In a faded orange top and shorts, she dances in the dome by herself.

On the steps of a museum, she dances on the edge while other people sit in the front and stand in the back, wearing white robes.

Rating: 5/5

While at the covenience store, she searches through the hair care aisle for oils. She pushes over boxes of smiling white women with long blonde and brunette tresses and finds a small selection. She sighs, bucking the stares of the women staring at her unstraightened natural hair. As she passed by them, she noticed the chestnut brown roots peeking out from the platinum blonde or gray on their heads.

Cart hanging on her arm, she taps her phone, buying the oil and calls the salon. She wants to put some blonde highlights in her hair. However, she knows she will be judged for it. People will say she’s ashamed of her hair and buying into the accepted standard of mainstream beauty. She likes how the blonde shimmers in the light, though and she needs a change.

Solange learned as a child that her hair style was as political as her education. Natural or dyed, there was an underlying statement being made. She tried to stay within the norms but found it time-consuming. After a while, she started to wear it without product. Her hair, like her skin color, is a part of her and the choosing the style empowers her.

Director: Alan Ferguson Year: 2016

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Pam Avoledo Administrator
Pam Avoledo spends her time binge-watching classic teen dramas and stands firm in her pro-Leyton stance. She also received her journalism degree in 2006 from Oakland University. Her work has been published in the White Wall Review, Sledgehammer Lit ,Greatest City Collective, 45 Magazine ,Fevers of the Mind, Daily Drunk Mag\'s Kirstofia anthology. and forthcoming in Scrawl Place

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