Guiliana Rancic of E! network’s “Fashion Police” enraged urban America and fellow costar Kelly Osbourne when she parted that hole in the middle of her face and said Zendaya looked like “she probably smells like patchouli oil” because Zendaya was flossing dreadlocks to the Oscars this past Sunday.
Zendaya, 18, was actually the classy one where she clapped back at Rancic in a real sophisticated way. Zendaya schooled Rancic and anyone else who didn’t see how the racially-tinged comment could be disrespectful:
“There is a fine line between what is funny and disrespectful,” Zendaya wrote on Instagram. “Someone said something about my hair at the Oscars that left me in awe. Not because I was relishing in rave outfit reviews, but because I was hit with ignorant slurs and pure disrespect. To say that an 18-year-old young woman with locs must smell of patchouli oil or ‘weed’ is not only a large stereotype but outrageously offensive.
“There is already harsh criticism of African American hair in society without the help of ignorant people who choose to judge others based on the curl of their hair.”
Just weeks before Zendaya walked down the red carpet with a mane full of beautiful locs, Kylie Jenner posted a picture rocking a loc’d up-do that many, including Rancic, deemed “edgy.” Sadly, for black women, rocking a traditional hairstyle garnered more scrutiny and required more explanation — a symptom of the narrow beauty standards forced on women of color for centuries.
Despite the fact that Rancic dribbled out the perfunctory mea culpa, the damage was already done and her comments sparked a social media inferno.
Besides, several Twitter users noticed Rancic’s hypocrisy and contradictions — the glaring difference between how Rancic commented on Kylie Jenner wearing dreads and Zendaya sporting the same look:
Check out what other Zendaya defenders had to say: