Worn by — you guessed it! — a whole lot of white models at the mens’ Fall 2020 show.
Welcome to our column, “Hey, Quick Question,” where we investigate seemingly random happenings in the fashion and beauty industries. Enjoy!
Remember when Amandla Stenberg went viral in 2015 for her video “Don’t Cash Crop On My Corn Rows” explaining the issues with non-Black people “borrowing” aesthetics from Black culture? Remember in 2016 when Valentino and Marc Jacobs caught flak for putting predominantly white models in Bantu knots and dreadlocks, respectively? Remember all the zillion times before and since that Black people have articulated, over and over, why non-Black people appropriating Black hairstyles is a bad idea?
Us too! But apparently we can’t say the same for the hair team working on the Comme des Garçons Fall 2020 menswear show. In Paris on Friday, the Japanese brand sent a bevy of models down the runway in wigs designed to look like cornrows — the majority of which were worn by white models.
Not only was this in poor taste considering the ongoing conversation about cultural appropriation in fashion, but these wigs also were often not fitted all that well to the models’ heads, taking the look from offensive to offensive and messy-looking, which adds insult to injury with regards to a hairstyle that highlights neatness.
Considering the fact that Comme des Garçons has come under fire in the past for its narrow castings that too often overlook Black models, this is not a good look.