From Baby Hairs To ‘Sticky Bangs’: 5 Times Whiteness Has Columbus’ed Black Women’s Aesthetics

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Coming up, I always saw Black women around me accessorize with gold from head to toe. The gold chunky earrings, the gold nameplate chains, ankle bracelets and bangles were my personal favorites. During my younger years, wearing a lot of gold jewelry was seen as “ghetto,” but it was a part of my culture so I celebrated it regardless. Fast forward to the 2010s and the “ghetto” thing is glamorous and on-trend.

Every Instagram ad I see for gold jewelry has a white woman donning gold hoop earrings, name plates, name earrings and name rings. In New York City, you could find these pieces only at sights like Jamaica Ave in Queens, 125th Street in Harlem, Fordham Rd in the Bronx, and Fulton Street in Brooklyn. Not on Fifth Ave where the whites went. It’s quite cringy to now see white women wearing something that was so representative of the hood and Blackness. It’s gone from being something synonymous with Black culture to another wearable part of our Blackness.


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