Amara La Negra Opens Up About Colorism And The Trauma Of Relaxers

MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 01:  Amara La Negra attends the  "Love And Hip Hop" Miami Screening with the cast of Love and Hip Hop at Studid 23 on January 1, 2018 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Thaddaeus McAdams/Getty Images)

Amara La Negra Opens Up About Colorism And The Trauma Of Relaxers

"You need to perm her hair because her hair is unmanageable and we don’t have time for this."

Published January 11, 2018

Since her debut on Love and Hip-Hop Miami earlier this month, Amara La Negra has quickly become a household name.

The Afro-Latina recording artist not only had to defend her “look” to producer Young Hollywood (who recently defended his comment), but also the internet, who accused her of wearing “blackface.”

Despite the drama, the 26-year-old former beauty queen is 100 percent grounded in herself — but admits that wasn't always the case.

This is Me! #AmaraLaNegra Take it or leave it! Thank you to all my #ALNsoldier

A post shared by A M A R A "LA NEGRA" (@amaralanegraaln) on

Amara shared a heartbreaking tale with Yahoo! about the pressure to look a certain way to be successful — hence her strong stance on the industry accepting her as is.

“I remember being four years old, working on this network,” she recalled. “They had a hairstylist, and the hairstylist said to my mom, ‘You need to perm her hair because her hair is unmanageable and we don’t have time for this.’ I will always remember those words, and the look that my mom gave me."

"I looked at her like, ‘I don’t know what to do. Like what? It’s not my fault. What am I supposed to do?’ After that day, I remember my mom perming my hair," she explains. 

Part of Amara's mission is to make sure other young girls don't succumb to the pressures she did at an early age — and wants to serve as a role model. She cites both her mother and the late Celia Cruz as her inspirations. 

“My mom is everything,” she explains. “She built me the way that I am and made sure that I always knew that my color was beautiful. She always would tell me, ‘Because of your color, you’re always going to have to work twice as hard to be recognized for your work.’ I never understood it until years later — and she was right.”

“In the Latin community, she was the only Afro-Latino who made it worldwide, and she was like our Michael Jackson,” Amara shared about Celia Cruz. “Celia Cruz was the only Afro-Latino that looked like myself and made me think, ‘Oh my God. You know, when I grow up, I can be like her.'” 

Her advice? “Don’t ever feel as if you need to change who you are in order to be accepted or in order to be beautiful,” she stated. “That’s my true issue. Not so much about a specific race. It’s just in general.”

Amara added, “Not everyone is meant to be skinny or tall or have a big butt or big boobs. Just take you as you are. If you want to change a little bit because it’s going to make you feel better, do it. But don’t do it because you feel pressured that you have to.”

Solid words from the shining star who recently signed a multi-million-dollar record deal with BMG and Fast Life Entertainment and already has plans to release her first single in the first quarter of 2018. Looks like even the haters couldn't keep her down.   

Written by Janell M. Hickman

(Photo: Thaddaeus McAdams/Getty Images)


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