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Recent years have seen significant shifts in the representation of women in the media. Now, no-makeup selfies are the norm for celebs like Salma Hayek and Adele, while speaking out about eyelash enhancements and lip fillers isn’t at all unusual. However, as Hollywood’s quickly coming to realise, there’s still one aspect of female beauty that’s for some reason sneaking under the radar, and it comes in the form of hair extensions.
Even though stylists predict that as many as 97% of female stars wear extensions, only big names like Mindy Kaling, Selena Gomez, and Lucy Hale have fessed up to the fact. This omission seems strange, perhaps, when you consider that things like beauty enhancements are certainly more extreme in terms of appearance dishonesty, but there we have it – you can tell us about your boob job, but maybe keep mum about those extensions?
However, things are changing, with increasing pressure on stars to remove unrealistic appearances slowly bringing extensions out in the open. Particularly, the women who have spoken out about using this beauty enhancement have facilitated an age of awareness that’s seen celebs like Beyonce (who starred in L’Oreal ads with suspected extensions) called out for their secrets. The question is, why is it so important to make extension usage known in the mainstream anyway?
Setting more realistic ideas of female beauty
No makeup drives and beyond have all attempted to set more realistic expectations of female beauty, especially for easily influenced young girls. Admittedly, hair extension omissions may seem like a small issue in light of the significant changes that these drives have already seen across Hollywood representation, but this ongoing secrecy is still at risk of undermining progress so far if it isn’t addressed.
Removing the shame
Whether women want extensions due to hair loss or appearance concerns, silence about this addition has facilitated a real sense of shame that makes it difficult for women to seek the same. But, if more celebs followed in the footsteps of stars like Mindy Kaling, it would empower way more women and girls to take the plunge and find the best hair extensions without doubting themselves or feeling embarrassed. The empowerment that this simple step could take may, therefore, change lives and, hopefully society.
Taking a stand for female autonomy
Finally speaking out about the hair trends that have been holding Hollywood afloat for so long could also work wonders for sending a clear message about female autonomy. After all, no matter how much we stand up for our right to wear makeup or short skirts if we want to, we’re still sending a negative image by remaining quiet in some areas. By being open about extensions and continuing to enjoy them anyway, celebs will be far better poised to own their autonomy and encourage even young girls to do the same.
The extension issues may seem like a sideline, but with so much at stake, this could certainly be the cherry on the cake of female perceptions if more women were to simply speak out at long last.