Celebrating the power of choice: 10 beautiful black Brazilian women empowered with straight hair

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Note from BW of Brazil: As with many topics we cover on this, today’s post is on a topic that offer an alternative; the other side of the coin, if you will. As our regular readers know, we absolutely LOVE to cover the rising tide of black Brazilian women opting to accept the hair they were born with and helping to knock down the invisible wall that says that only straight hair is/should be seen as beautiful. Anyone who spends any time in a number of large Brazilian cities will be sure to note the various afro textured hair styles now being proudly worn by Brazilian of visible African descent. Considering that between just one to two decades ago, the vast majority of afro-brasileiras were using every trick in the book to try to hide their natural kinks and curls, the sight of so many of these women proudly rocking what Africa gave them is indeed an inspiring sight! But now for the other side of the coin. 

Although it is clear that countless women are rejecting the often damaging effects that chemicals and processes have had on the health of their hair, the majority of Afro-Brazilian women continue to straighten their hair. And although we will continue to encourage women to accept their natural hair as it is, we don’t want to be in a position in which women feel that wearing their natural hair is an imposition. For one could argue that it was/is an invisible (Eurocentric) imposition that made millions of women begin to straighten their hair in the first place. Women of African descent have and indeed should have the right to explore the various looks that women of other races are free to experiment with. It is and should be all about choices and true freedom is having the option of wearing one’s hair in whatever way one finds pleasing with any sort of dictated standard of beauty. For this reason, today we bring you 10 beautiful black Brazilian women who wear their hair straight. Be sure to chime in with what you think in the comments section!

10 beautiful black Brazilian women empowered with straight hair

By Lari Cunegundes

I’m already tired of hearing that black women that straighten their hair or have straight hair are less black than others! People who believe in this statement are simply ignorant humans. One thing is you HIDING behind straightened hair to be “accepted” by society, and another is you knowing yourself well, making that decision with your own will and being happy with the choice you made. We live in a country where DEMOCRACY speaks louder (yes, at times this system generates doubts), but even so we are free to make our decisions.

Many people judge me for opting to have straightened hair. And you know what I say? “The hair is mine and I do what I want.” I know very well that I have cabelo crespo (kinky/curly hair) and never hid it. I’m not ashamed, I’m very proud. I know my ancestors very well and I’m very proud of them. I’m proud of my color, I am beautiful and I love myself in this way, with straightened hair.

For these reasons, I had the curiosity of searching for mulheres negras brasileiras (black Brazilian women) who use some type of chemical in their hair or have straight hair. I’ve never seen a story valuing these girls by their CHOICE, and like me there are several black who got the game on lock with straightened hair and very well understood with their personality. Straightened hair doesn’t define character and these women will not be less black because of this! Hair is a choice, today I’ve chosen to be straightened, tomorrow if I want I can be bald or have colorful braids.

Then let’s go to the 10 belas negras brasileiras alisadas e empoderadas (beautiful and straightened black Brazilian women) that you need to know!


1 – @anabeauty_

What can you say about this woman? Ana Bela Santos is a model and diva around the world on the catwalks and in fashion editorials. I hope to have the honor of running into this muse some day, beautiful and yes, she has straightened hair. Accept that it hurts less, society!


2 – @sknngns

Maria Caroline Paixão, from São Paulo, a fashion design student at the University of Istanbul and a model. What about this homegirl? This is how we treat each other, like homegirls. If there is love at first sight in friendships, I say that with Caroline that was what in fact happened. We are sisters separated at maternity hahahaha. Talented, intelligent, stylish, wonderful and Miss worldwide: this is the best description that I have for her!

We had a homegirl/homegirl chat about straightened, empowered black women and this was her opinion:

This talk that a straightened black woman is not empowered comes from the completely superficial idea that aesthetics is one of the pillars of empowerment. It’s a part, yes, but not all. Learning to love our features, hair, skin, is necessary because we grow up learning that it’s not something good, it’s ugly, it’s marginal, is synonymous with poverty. But you can’t talk about it without remembering that there are black women who simply can’t afford to take care of her hair naturally because of a lack of money, time, or even patience. There are pretas (black women) that need to straighten in order to work, which is my case and many other models, for example. Does this make our political commitment before a cacheada/crespa (curly/kinky haired woman)? No way. The black woman needs a lot in this world, not capillary rules. We need psychological support, need employment opportunities to enter universities, to travel, to have access to sexual education, and so on. If the movement is more preoccupied with hair than this, there’s something wrong with them, not with the preta who decided to keep her hair straightened – as long as it’s HER decision.


3 – @_linedias

Aline Dias is an actress and is the first black protagonist of (Globo TV series) Malhação. Only after 20 years did the station decide to put a black protagonist on. Laziness, Globo. But congratulations on this achievement, Aline, I’m sure it wasn’t easy to get where you are now. Yes, she is black and has straight hair!


4 – @julhastardust

Ju is in her last year of college studying Design. She’s beautiful, a person’s sweetheart. We’ve been migas (amigas, friends) on Instagram for some time and we had a chat about the relationship she has with her hair. She’s used chemical already a few years, and feels much more beautiful with her straight hair. In her childhood, some pretty cruel children practiced bullying on her, but it didn’t leave her shaken and much less ashamed of her cabelo crespo. “It was a matter of choice and taste to straighten it,” she said. Even today people deal with the most cliché question: “Why don’t you leave it natural?” And she answers, “I like it the way it is.” To complete the chat she said: “I love my straight hair, I feel much more beautiful with it this way and super support women who decide on this choice. A woman needs to feel good about herself, be it with braids, shaved or colored.”


5 – @junaconechni

Júlia Naconechi is the name of this pretty one here. I always see her putting close ups on Instagram, and of course she wouldn’t be off of that list! With her straight hair with bangs, she came here to show why she came into the world. A woman of attitude and personality! Of course, with straight and very well maintained hair.


6 – @mccaroldeniteroioficial

Caramba, I hit up on a goddess in my timeline! MC Carol from Niterói, what is there to say about this woman? The songs made by her reflect her personality and how she sees our society, which is well… nevermind! Beautiful, wonderful and straightened! Bring it all, my love!


7 – @camilanunesmakeup

I didn’t know Cami, I found her by chance on Instagram and thought she was wonderful. She knows these new styles of all the makeup for black skin. Comes here and make me up, beautiful one! Camila Nunes is a makeup artist, blogger, YouTuber and has beautiful, straight hair.


8 – @rafaelalow

Rafa Low: I found this woman’s charming smile through the internets of life. I found her beautiful, black and with cabelos lisos (straight hair). And this bangs? I’m a suspect for talking about bangs. #amo


9 – @laisribeiro

Lais Ribeiro, model and only angel of Victoria’s Secret. This beauty was discovered by a Beleza Mundial (World Beauty) contest and today getting some of the top work in the modeling world. The last job that Lais did and I loved was the new collection of Ricardo Ticci in collaboration with Nikelab.


10 – @by_thamires

I found Thami via the Instagram of @camilanunesmakeup – they are friends. Thami knows and is the word in top makeups brands. Imagine these two together? A makeup diva that has it on lock! Negra baphô (a black banger), beautiful and straight hair.

Afro representation doesn’t depend ONLY hair, but attitudes. To know the history of our ancestors and never forget where we came from is what matters. Let’s ACCEPT and RESPECT black women’s options, be it straightened hair, curly, bald, colorful, braided, whatever. Let’s respect.

SourceLari Cunegundes

About Marques Travae 3747 Articles
Marques Travae. For more on the creator and editor of BLACK WOMEN OF BRAZIL, see the interview here.


  1. “Empowered by Straight Hair”? Oh PLEASE! These women represent the norm and what has always been expected of Black women! There is no real discussion to have about them, because their hair is already deemed acceptable because it looks like the hair that everyone else on the planet has! Some of these girls DEFINITELY need to use higher quality products and get their touchups done more often, if they want to have straight hair, cause dem roots and chemically induced thinning be showin like a mofo!

  2. Throughout the diaspora this conversation has been had. Quite frankly, I think it is a healthy conversation to have. However, to move on in our collective journey of liberating African peoples in the diaspora and our Ancestral homeland, I think we should all come to a consensus despite differing views on this. The root problem for many concerns is one not accepting the natural beauty the creator issued us. And, why are we emulating a different race that would not emulate us. The next central view is this hairstyle is apart of culture. It has been worn by our mothers and grandmothers. It has been the norm that we were born into. It is universally accepted and Sanctioned by Society that we don’t Control.

    Okay. I get both views. My view. As a African American male 65 years of age I have witness in America a period of social revolution for black Americans. During the early 60’s, before, James Brown’s: Say it Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud # 1 record in America; before Malcolm X, Black Panther Party…to be light skinned was a positive; being dark skinned was unattractive. Nappy hair was frowned upon. Many young black girls had to go through the agony of getting those “naps” combed out and have her hair pressed. Having your hair pressed was apart of being fully dressed an acceptable to the public: school, church, grocery store etc. It was even a thing you done to be attractive for the opposite sex.

    After the revolutionary period in the late 68/1973, African Americans, the majority, start wearing their hair naturally. All classes: rich, poor. By the start of the 1980’s black Americans were wearing their hair any way they preferred. By the late 80’s the Hair Industry created many products that relaxed hair for African Americans and it skyrocketed. By the 1990’s the weave, hair extensions, “jerri curl” were popular. And, presently, it is: Wear your Hair Anyway you Please because you are still…Black and Beautiful.

    Many times for us how you wear your hair is a statement that defines: Cultural Self-Identity, recognition of culture; or, it could be just Choice; because however you choose to wear your hair, outsiders are going to try to define who you think your are or who you are trying to represent. My point to all the ladies etc.., is we all must clearly understand that it is not our fault that we were conquered and colonized as a people. Those of us in the diaspora are multi-cultural. While i’m of African descent I’m pretty much a All-American person. In other words, it is or should be Normal, apart of the Social Norm for me to wear my hair with a weave, relaxed, bald, kinky or curly etc. As African peoples who are Brazilians, Americans, Cubans, Columbans, British, etc: Wear your locs, bald heads, relaxed hair, etc. proudly. How you wear it does not include or exclude you from the beauty and greatness that you represent.

    Now, let us all focus on the more important issues of claiming our Civil Rights in the lands we were born in. And, petition our governments for our Liberty under the Laws. And, hope too that our Motherland/Fatherland becomes strong, united and industrialized. Our Freedom and Liberation Abroad depends a great deal on the Continent of African and African countries being Independent, Industrial developed, Militarily strong, Educated, United etc., that goes a long way in ensuring our Respect as we Struggle our battles for Justice.

    • Mr. Smith,

      With all due respect from a younger and much less wiser person, I sincerely disagree we can act this way.

      I am an ignorant in our glorious past and I do believe you when you say that

      ” The next central view is this hairstyle is apart of culture. It has been worn by our mothers and grandmothers. It has been the norm that we were born into. It is universally accepted and Sanctioned by Society that we don’t Control.”

      But come on! These women are NOT emulating our great past! They are pure and simply spitting in our faces. They are serving the oppressor pure and simple!

      I understand we cannot ask all our brothers to fight – but celebrate “empowering by straight hair”?? I’m really mystified this blog would drop this bomb and even worse that it had not caused like a thousand of furious comments! Really? We really think this is OK?

      OK, we may well kill ourselves.

      • PTR I understand your view, and to a degree-agree. However, people of color, have some major obstacles slowing their full citizenship in countries where they do not control government systems and enforcements; and these, for the most part, determines so many peoples station in life. There are roughly 55 million African Americans in America, and if you ever get our news you will find that collectively, we are fighting the American government: village, local, city, state, country for access to equal opportunity and to stop limiting our participation in our pursuit of life, and liberty in our own country. That is a monumental task. We need all hands on deck focusing our energies on this major problem.

        In fighting culturally, about how black women wear their hair or what hairstyle is appropriate is arguments that we should resolve collectively and move on to more important issues. If it was up to me personally, all black folks would wear Natural Hairstyles both men and women. However, it is not up to me. And I’m not going to spend wasted energy debating others and their opinion about what boils down to be: Personal Choice.

        Globally, women of African descent are citizens of countries everywhere, including Brazil, Cuba, America, Fuji, India, Britain, etc. Often times it is the case where people adopt the dominant culture in mores, style, culture. A case in point would be women of color relaxing their hair. Again, this is not a novel experience. These women great up thinking this was the norm, a way of life. They grew up seeing their mother’s with relaxed hair. It has been so apart of the culture that it is apart of culture no different than playing the conga drums or doing some cultural dance.

        The major problem I may have with black women and relaxed hair is that they do not own the manufacturing, distribution and creation of the product, and do not share the wealth. They are only spending their money making folks born with a different hair texture Rich. In America, black women spend million of dollars on hair products, weaves, etc., manufactured by Asian countries: India, China, Korea, etc. We buy, they get rich.

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