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'Hair Freedom' Mini-Doc Explores The Natural Hair Movement In The UK

'Hair Freedom,' a documentary short by English filmmaker Zindzi Rocque Drayton for BBC Raw, explores the natural hair movement in the UK.


Hair Freedom is a mini-documentary from YouTube content creator Zindzi Rocque Drayton addressing the highs and lows experienced by black women in London who have chosen to wear their hair in its natural state. Developed for the BBC Raw collective, the doc features street interviews with a group of young women who share insightful commentary on 'unnatural hair,' breaking free from Eurocentric beauty ideals and their own personal journeys towards embracing black beauty.

"Natural hair is defined as Afro textured hair that isn't chemically straightened," Rocque Drayton writes on the video's YouTube page. "In our society and throughout the world, straight hair is so normalised that a large number of black women chemically straighten their Afro texture. Touching on topics from rocking an Afro in the workplace to the legacy of slavery, I find out the pressures and joys of women who have embraced their 'natural hair'." Watch Hair-Freedom below.

Interview
Photo: Lex Ash (@thelexash). Courtesy of Simi.

Interview: Simi Is Taking Risks

Nigerian star Simi talks about the successes & risks of this year, her thoughts on the #EndSARS protests, and how her husband, Adekunle Gold, inspired Restless II.

Simi is restless. It has nothing to do with the year she has had, in fact, she reaffirmed her status as one of Nigeria's most successful musicians with a single music drop, "Duduke," which enjoyed widespread appeal as the nation went into lockdown earlier in the year.

The 32-year-old singer's restlessness is a reflection of the organised chaos that has defined her recording process this year as she combined the rigours of being an expectant mother with an examination of her place in the wider world. It, more accurately, reflects her re-negotiation of the parameters of her stardom.

"I've never really been a big fan of the spotlight," she whispers silently early in our Zoom conversation. "I know that it comes with the territory, but when I got my big break and more people started to recognise me, I realised that I had to edit myself, my life, and most of the things that I'd do or say because I wanted to be careful to keep a part of me for myself."

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