On Monday night's Met Gala red carpet, Lupita Nyong'o told Vogue's Andre Leon Talley that her sky-high hairstyle was inspired by "sculptural hairdos from around the continent," as well as the legendary musician Nina Simone. But when a Vogue.com headline asked, "Is Lupita Nyong'o the New Audrey Hepburn?" and made a connection between the look and a conal hairstyle Hepburn modeled in a 1963 Vogue shoot with Bert Stern, Nyong'o was not pleased. She posted a video on Instagram on Wednesday of her Met Gala beauty look alongside images of African women and Simone with caption: "Hair inspiration. Check." She tagged Vogue's Instagram handle.
While Vogue's piece did say that Nyong'o "mentioned references ranging from The Matrix to Nina Simone" (the former related to the Calvin Klein dress), it focused on Hepburn and echoed other publication's references to Dr. Seuss's "Whoville." NPR clarified on Tuesday that the hairstyle is a signifier of wealth in certain African communities: "A towering hairdo has historically signified a person's tribal background, rank in society — or a wife's ability to live a life of leisure because of her husband's wealth."
Nyong'o didn't get that specific in her response to Vogue, but the message is crystal clear.
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