Lena Waithe reveals the meaningful reason why she cut her hair


Lena Waithe reveals why she decided to cut her hair, sharing her feelings of freedom and joy in her new, stylishly short style.

Lena Waithe has opened up about the reason for her much-shorter hairstyle. The actress earned her place in entertainment history last year, becoming the first black woman to take home a comedy writing Emmy. Lena used her experience coming out as a lesbian for the basis of her contribution to the “Thanksgiving” episode of Master of None. And she credits her identity to her decision to cut her hair.

Hair as a “piece of femininity”

Taking her turn on the red carpet at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s yearly grants banquet, Waithe showed her sense of humor in discussing her new hairstyle.

“I’ve gotten gayer, guys,” teased Waithe.

But the actress turned serious in reflecting what went into her decision to cut her hair. Admitting she had considered going shorter for some time, Waithe was vulnerable in confessing her desire to make others accept her for who she is.

"I felt like I was holding onto a piece of femininity that would make the world feel comfortable with who I am. I think I thought for a long time, ‘Oh, if I cut my hair, I’ll be a stud, I’ll be — in the gay world, there’s a lot of categories — I’ll be a stud or I’ll be a butch,’ and I’ve always thought, ‘Well, no, I’m not that, I’m still soft.’"

Finally, however, Waithe said she realized that she had to “put that down ’cause that’s something that’s outside of me.'” She shared her new haircut on Instagram with the caption “new tings.”

For Peanuts comic creator Charles M. Schulz, happiness was a “warm puppy.” For Waithe, happiness is deciding to cut her hair. The act was freeing, declared the actress, describing herself as feeling “so free and so happy and so joyful.”

In cutting her hair, summed up Waithe, she “really stepped into myself.” And as for other people’s opinions, Waithe doesn’t really care.

“If people call me a butch or say ‘she’s stud’ or call me sir out in the world — so what?” she asked. “So be it. I’m here with a suit on, not a stitch of makeup, and a haircut — I feel like, ‘Why can’t I exist in the world in that way?'”

Essence praised Waithe’s decision to cut off her hair on Twitter, tweeting that her liberation is  a “beautiful sight to see.” Waithe’s Twitter and Instagram followers also had praise for her bold new hairstyle. Many of Waithe’s fans wrote that they loved her hair cut, and one person wrote that Waithe made her “proud to be black in a time when honey we need it.”

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What do you think of Lena Waithe’s new hairstyle?