Gabrielle Union Admitted That She Struggled to Love Her Natural Hair Growing Up

Noella Williams
·2-min read
Gabrielle Union
Gabrielle Union

Slaven Vlasic, Getty Images

Gabrielle Union opened up about her love for her natural hair after years of having a battle with admiring it.

In a recent interview with Elle, the 48-year-old actress said, "I don't think I fell back in love with myself until relatively recently, and some of that self-love has come from learning to embrace my natural beauty, especially my hair texture."

The Being Mary Jane star shared that she received a relaxer in her hair as an 8-year-old and did not go natural until her 30s. She continued by saying that she didn't wear braids to professional events until her 2016 holiday comedy Almost Christmas.

"Something happened around my 40s where I just fell in love with myself," Union said. "I emptied my basket of fucks. And that's the attitude I hope to pass onto my daughters—shameless self-love."

Union shared that she didn't see much representation in television, magazines, and film for Black women, specifically Black women with natural hair.

"I marvel at my hair's strength and all of the diversity of looks and styles that I can achieve. I can literally transform into anything," Union said in an interview with People. "I can do it without a lot of heat. I'm doing it without relaxers. I'm doing it without having FOMO! I used to think you had to have a certain hair texture in order to be seen as beautiful or dynamic. I don't have that anymore. I love my own hair. Everything I want to achieve, everything I can dream of, I know I can do it with my own hair."

In 2017, Union and celebrity hair stylist Larry Sims created Flawless, their hair care line designed to celebrate style versatility. Their texture-specific products include a repairing edge control, restoring conditioner, defining curl cream, and more. Union's affordable, high-quality line is recommended for those with natural, relaxed, or color-treated hair, and it's available to purchase at Sally Beauty or their site.

Sims and Union are hosting a live DIY University class with Sally Beauty on February 24th at 6 p.m. EST to share their tips on protective styles and textured hair care. We'll be tuning in—will you?