Nicki Minaj charges people off in many ways: those faux accents when she is rapping, her gorgeous but controversial look. Then there is her ‘is she, or isn’t she’ bisexuality issues.
I have covered Nicki Minaj’s hair before. It is exciting to watch each new video or appearance of hers because her hair is like sugary icing on top of a wedding cake – so bright and sometimes too sweet. It’s also like she has gone to the painters and purchased all the cans of Dulux available, dousing her black Afro hair in all colours.
It’s a look reminiscent of the once mighty Lil Kim, but also injected with a signature Minaj kookiness that would not leave her out of place in Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland. Nicki Minaj is asking, in a subtle way with her hair, she is asking black women if they want to use their hair as a podium to be wild, wanton and almost like a rebellious teenager.
How Nicki Minaj has crafted her hair persona is part of her career and that is a facile point to make. If anything, she is showing that the black hair experience is more than just tired debates about the same old relaxed vs natural, but doing what you want with your hair.
The problem is, is this look aspirational? Most women who would walk into work a pink Minaj-esque wig would look like bell ends. Sometimes her hair looks do look too contrived, but is contrived better than safe?