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“It was scary when it started.” Jada Pinkett, the wife of Will Smith, spoke for the first time about her alopecia problem in 2018, on Red Table Talk, the talk show that she was a presenter with her daughter and her mother. For some time now, she has made this ailment a flag.
This Sunday, during the Oscar gala, Will Smith hit Chris Rock after the comedian made a joke about his wife.
“Jada, I can’t wait for GI Jane 2,” Rock said, referring to GI Jane, the 1997 film in which Demi Moore played the lead with a shaved head.
Pinkett, a 51-year-old American actress, shows off her shaved head to visibleilyse the problem of female alopecia that she suffers from and, at the same time, silence rumors about possible illnesses that she may have.
But the road to get there has not been easy.
When she began to suffer from it, the also producer and composer covered his head with turbans. That led many people to question this new look. “I’ve been getting a lot of questions about why I’ve been wearing this turban,” said the American actress in 2018 during the show where she decided to clear up any doubts.
“It was one of the times in my life where I was literally shaking with fear. I was like, ‘Oh my god, am I going bald?’ That’s why I cut my hair and I keep cutting it,” he said then.
He suspected that he suffered from alopecia when he began to see that she lost “handfuls of hair” in the shower.
Doctors have not identified a cause, but Pinkett think it may be related to stress.
Pinkett is known, among other things, for her appearance in several films of the Matrix saga, The Nutty Professor or the Gotham series. Her acting career began with her appearance on the famous American sitcom True Colors.
Alopecia in women
Androgenetic or androgenic alopecia is the most common cause of baldness in both men and women.
It is inherited from one or both parents and can be triggered by hormonal changes at any time after puberty.
Hair loss usually occurs at the “crown”, and on the front and top of the scalp.
Experts point out that there are three main causes of hair loss: age, genes and testosterone.
In the case of women the hormonal changes that are experienced after puberty, pregnancy or menopause can trigger baldness.
When it happens after pregnancy, it’s usually temporary, according to the Institute of Trichologists. Approximately three months after giving birth, hair loss is usually due to shock, hormonal changes and anemia. But a few months later everything usually returns to normal.
In the case of alopecia related to menopause, the hormone that plays the main role in the process is dihydrotestosterone (DHT).
DHT causes a change in the hair follicles on the scalp, according to information from the UK Association of Dermatologists.
The hair follicle is the part of the skin that gives growth to the hair, on which each hair rests.
This change that the hormone DHT causes in the follicles makes the hair smaller in diameter, shorter and lighter in color.
Thus, until the follicles directly stop producing hair.
Pinkett showed her head completely shaved, without a turban, in July 2021. He did it through the Instagram account of his daughter, singer Willow Smith, who had previously shaved her head during one of her concerts. “Willow made me do it because It’s time to let it go”he later posted on his own account.
Since then, in most of his publications on this social network, as well as in his public appearances, he shows off his head without any hair.
Again the questions began about what was wrong with him and why his hair was shaved. So last December she explained it again, this time with some humor.
“Mom will have to shave to zero so no one thinks she’s had brain surgery or something. This alopecia and I are going to be friends… period!”, told in a video.
“I can only laugh”added Jada Pinkett Smith.
a difficult path
Three years passed since he first spoke about his alopecia problem until he decided to show off his shaved head.
In 2018 he admitted that he found it “difficult to talk about her hair loss” as taking care of her hair used to be a “beautiful ritual”.
On his Red Table Talk show, he said the fate of his body rests with a “higher power” and accepting it has helped him find a perspective to deal with the emotional impact of alopecia.
“There are people here with cancer, with sick children… I see the higher power taking over things every day,” he said, adding that his hair loss pales in comparison to other problems.
“When I looked at it from that perspective, I calmed down.”
As a result of the Physical changes, Smith began wearing headscarves, which she says act as an empowering fashion choice: “When my hair is wrapped, I feel like a queen”said.
Just a few days ago he published a publication where he showed his bald head adorned with a sort of golden necklace, proud.
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Jada Pinkett: Will Smith’s wife’s struggle to accept and make female alopecia visible – BBC News Mundo