Gabby Douglas is having the time of her life at the Olympics, so why are people focusing on her hair? Her mom, Natalie Hawkins, addresses the haters.
Gabby Douglas flipped into our hearts last week when she won two gold medals — one with her “Fab Five” teammates and the other individually. We thought she looked totally adorable. Apparently, not everyone thought so: Soon after her win, Twitter users started writing snarky comments about her hair.
“…gabby douglas gotta do something with this hair! these clips and this brown gel residue aint it!” @doscentavos wrote.
“In Olympic news, why hasn’t anyone tried to fix Gabby Douglas’ hair?” user @EbonyKeira added. You get the idea.
Seriously: What is wrong with her hair? No one (with a brain) gets it — including Gabby and her mother, Natalie Hawkins.
“How ignorant is it of people to comment on her hair and she still has more competitions to go. Are you trying to ruin her self-confidence?” Hawkins mused to Fashionista.com. “She has to go out there and feel good about herself, and if she feels good about herself on that floor, who are you to criticize her? What have you done to help contribute to her dream, that you felt it necessary to put it out there so that she could see it.”
So what that her hair isn’t “perfect,” according to some. She spends most of her time practicing, after all.
“She has to keep her hair in a ponytail 28-30 hours a week,” Hawkins added. “In gymnastics you’re tumbling around on your hair. You’re falling backwards on it. You’re doing ‘timers’ and your hair is constantly snagging on the mat, and for our hair that’s very detrimental. You’re going into foam pits—and any hair stylist will tell you that foam on African American hair is destructive.”
Plus, who cares? She’d be just as awesome with an afro or bald. Luckily, Gabby isn’t letting it get to her.
“I’m not going to make her cut her hair just to please someone else,” Hawkins added.