Gabby Douglas' Hair Sparks Debate: Why?

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American teenager Gabby Douglas has been wowing the world with grace, style, and of course, the women's all-around gymnastics gold medal.

Nevertheless, much of the chatter on social media and online platforms has been about the upkeep of her hair, and not all feedback is positive.

Douglas, one of the few African-American gymnasts ever to compete in the Olympics and the first to win all-around gold, is an inspiring story.

Time and Sports Illustrated have her on their covers. President Barack Obama called to congratulate her. So why do people care about Gabby Douglas' hair?!

Gabby Douglas Hair

“I love how she’s doing her thing and winning,’’ says 22-year-old Latisha Jenkins of Detroit told The Daily Beast. “But I just hate the way her hair looks."

"With all those pins and gel ... I wish someone could have helped her make it look better since she’s being seen all over the world."

"She representing for black women everywhere.’’

According to reports, the 4'11" Douglas appears to have chemically relaxed natural hair, to which she adds a human-hair ponytail for height.

The Olympic champ then apparently slicks it all back with a heavy layer of gel to help it stay in place during her high-energy performances.

Gabby Douglas Ponytail

Hair has always been something of a hot button issue for African-American women culturally, but in the case of Douglas, isn't the criticism a little much?

Douglas’ accomplishments speak for themselves ... for the conversation to turn to a teenager’s physical appearance and upkeep seems a bit unfair.

Do you like her hair? Does it matter? Tell us what you think.


Is it any wonder why we grow up feeling "less than, not tall enough, skinny enough or pretty enough?"When is enough-enough? I am shocked and appalled. Her inner beauty, strength, grace, talent and determination is overlooked because of her hair? No wonder so many young people have eating disorders, substance use issues, or are suicidal. Latisha Jenkins, the one who made the comment, just demonstrated a classic form of "Bullying" in my opinion. That one sentence has or probably will go global and that young lady who has sacrificed her life and energy to represent our county and win a gold medal will have to live with the tagline, "The Olympic Gold Medalist in gymnastics, you know...the one with the bad hair?" Latisha, you self centered, shallow piece of shit! I can't wait for Karma to catch up your sorry ass! And shame on The Daily Beast for printing such a horrible comment!


Well, I do not believe that it is Black females fueling this. Where are the interviews or comments, "tweets" that complained about her hair? The press is raising this as an issue. Here this young lady accomplishes something that most Americans have not and the press belittles it by promoting a stereotype. She's an Olympian, but remember she "flawed." Disrespect towards Black females begins with comments about their hair, but what people do not realize is that not all Black women have the same type of hair. Here begins the destruction of Gabriel Douglas' image. What next?


what is wrong with people??? This is a teenage girl who made our country proud! who cares if she has gel in her hair and clips? People are so stupid some times. She's just a kid who has dedicated herself and has shown disipline. LEAVE HER ALONE! CONGRATULATIONS GABBY! I watched her and she was awesome!


I find it funny how no one is complaining about the other gymnasts whose hair is also done in a messy bun, WITH GEL AND CLIPS...why is it that no one is saying anything about them??? Only Gabby. Her hair is irrelevant. Stop being assholes. Shes there to win medals. This is not Miss America.


Who cares about her hair?! I mean come on people she is an amazing talented person......why do u care about her hair!? Her hair is beautiful the way it is because god made her that way. I hope u win GABBY!!!:)


Who cares about her hair? She could die it rainbow, stick a feather in it and look like a peacock and I would still want a pic made with her. Awesome job. 2 golds


Bless u Gabby for giving God the praise, you were made in his image and God makes no mistakes. Remember u are not ur hair, and those who chose to condemn you are most likely those who conform to what others deem as beu t ful. Rock them medals and keep giving God the praise. Smooches!!


High insecure heels,
Digging into their self esteem
Walking on their self respect
Stomping down in the dirt their dignity
In order to have long weaves
Long nails
Long eyelashes
to their self hatred Ignore your achilles’ heels
Stand on your toes
Golden girl gabby
Your hair is more beautiful than your swing
Your smile is more adorable than your floor exercise
Your dismount cannot be discounted by those who criticize your hair
You are not your hair
And if you were
You would be even more beautiful
If that’s possible


So stupid. Why do people care about what she does with her hair? It's up in a ponytail and out of her face for a reason: So she can perform without anything obstructing her sight.


I doubted some guzzling big empty headed Todd flat wide month wrote shilling stuff about a little girl that is sixteen… what are these people ??!!! New world record to all America, black or white, Gold medals and good for nothing creepy dot com , just commenting about little a girl hair make up.. Representing the super world power and dangling about her hair dressing.. Come on !!! People in America.. What is that call for?? She is a child and has done it … be proud. You guys just have to watch and keep that months shut.. Cousin cricket.. Cricketers and what is a nature … Is it that history telling an African American again and again… She has brought victory to America… Please stood welcome the victory from the victor… She is superb..

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