Okay firstly, SQUEE!!!! I finally have Groupthink privileges! I have been trying to figure this out since Kinja 10.bajillion launched, so I'm super excited. Mainly because I want to discuss something that I've been pondering for a few months.
That is: Why do so many successful female black entertainers go (and often stay) blonde?
That's not to say that there's anything wrong with being black and having blonde hair. After I did my big chop 2 years ago, I dyed my baby-fro blonde just because I'd never been brave enough to do it before.
Perhaps it's only because I noticed it so clearly with Beyonce during her promotion period for Pepsi and the Superbowl, but it seems to me that most of the very successful black female entertainers have blonde hair/weaves. Meanwhile, the ones who wear their natural hair never seem to gain as much mainstream success. (Think Erykah Badu, Ledisi, Chrisette Michele, Janelle Monae etc)
When I think of the black women who have become mega stars in the entertainment industry, almost all of them have been blonde at some point, or have been blonde for extended periods of time. I actually remember wondering what Beyonce's natural hair colour was. Rihanna, who has pretty much new hair each album, tends to be blonde between promotion cycles.
Even Nicki Minaj, who is nearly always in wigs, started gravitated away from black wigs and more to blonde wigs as she became more famous. It's rare to see her with black hair anymore.
Now Ciara, who is coming back from the lackluster performance of Basic Instinct in 2010, is back with some serious traction (in my estimation) for her new self-titled album... and blonde hair.
Even veteran entertainers like Mary J. Blige and Eve have been blonde for positively AGES.
And again, this isn't that there's anything wrong with being black and having blonde hair. It isn't even that they look bad. Personally I'm quite partial to Ciara's new hair and I think she looks GORGEOUS. But I find it interesting that SO MANY black female entertainers choose to go this route fashion wise.
I can't say that there's any correlation between success and blonde hair because I have no proof to that effect, (and it would probably prove me wrong even if it existed), but considering the fact that blonde hair does not generally occur naturally in the black gene pool, it means that black women with blonde hair are making a conscious choice to be blonde. Even slightly less mainstream black stars are or have been blonde: Keri Hilson, Keke Palmer, Keyshia Cole, Rita Ora, and Eva Marcelle, just to name a few.
Considering how political black hair is in the US, and the resurgence of the natural hair community, do you think it matters that so many black women choose to not only wear their hair naturally, but to wear weave and pieces in colours that don't match their natural colours? (Discounting unnatural colours a la Nicki Minaj of course)