Hair Musing: Solange

Solange has long been on our radar as a trendsetter and general inspiration - her effortless style and determination to be herself are two traits we appreciate at Glasshouse, and we’re constantly impressed by the unique ways in which she expresses herself through fashion, music and writing.

Image: Rika Magazine
Image: Rika Magazine

Although she’s been photographed wearing the world’s most interesting and influential designers and was signed as the face of Armani Jeans in 2008, Solo often goes pleasingly against the grain, both in terms of her playful look and her career choices.

Expected by many to follow in the sparkly footsteps of her big sister Beyoncé, Solange has taken a decidedly more low-key path - though low-key certainly doesn’t mean any less credible. She has worked on her brand of summery, relaxed pop, influenced by girl groups of the Motown era like The Supremes and Martha and the Vandellas, with some of the indie music world’s most innovative names. These include the producer Devonté Hynes, otherwise known as Glasshouse playlist mainstay Blood Orange, and Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor, whose label Terrible Records released her 2012 EP True.

Image: Bang & Olufsen Magazine
Image: Bang & Olufsen Magazine

Solange’s approach to hair reflects the fun, relaxed style she conveys through both her music and her wardrobe choices, and she constantly changes up her ways of wearing it. From tying it up with colourful, traditional African headscarves to the now-iconic afro she wore at her wedding to the music video director Alan Ferguson in 2014, she’s no stranger to hair experimentation, having also been spotted in braids and loose, 70s style waves.

Most recently, however, Solange has used her hair to amplify her politics. Having spoken out as a critic of racism in the United States, her choice to grow out and wear her natural afro hair in traditional and contemporary styles is a decision which has very much piqued our interest in her luscious locks.

Image: Tumblr.com]
Image: Tumblr.com

At Glasshouse, we’re champions of simple, natural hair, so we think that Solange’s decision to embrace her own is really exciting, especially as natural Black hair is so often looked down upon as unwelcome in the fashion world where she’s so well respected. By combining her laid-back sartorial selections with natural hair looks, Solange brings even more of her easy cool to the table, and, as one of many young Black women making the decision to move back towards natural hair, she proves that an afro is both statement-making and stylish.

Image: Rika Magazine
Image: Rika Magazine

Solange is also an outspoken feminist, so she’s no stranger to supporting other women - she profiled the teenage actress and activist Amandla Stenberg (another vocal natural hair advocate, who gained widespread acclaim for her commentary on the appropriation of Black culture via hairstyles) for the February 2016 edition of Teen Vogue, and is frequently very public in her unabashed support of her megastar older sister, despite media assumptions about jealousy or tension between the two.

Image:
Image: Refinery29.com

Solange’s style, and particularly her natural hair, is a real reflection of who she is, and that’s something we admire at Glasshouse. This multi-talented muse is a breath of fresh air, and we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled for what she and her hair do next.

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