Natural hair is making its way into the mainstream more and more. You can see it everywhere from commercials, runways, on the pages of magazines, and more! At the forefront of this movement is model and actor Tomiko Fraser Hines. Having served as the face of Maybelline New York for eight years — a first for an African-American model — Tomiko has been featured on countless billboards, magazine ads and commercials on behalf of the cosmetics brand. In addition to Maybelline New York, Tomiko appeared in print and television campaigns for brands like Tommy Hilfiger, Alfani, The Gap, Old Navy, Lee Jeans & Target. She has also graced the pages of magazines around the world, including German Vogue, Glamour, British Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, Essence, and Elle.
Shortly after landing the job with Maybelline, Tomiko started her natural hair journey. I had an opportunity to speak to Tomiko, and we talked about why she started her journey and her thoughts on textured hair in the fashion industry. Tomiko shared that she decided to stop relaxing her hair because of some hair and scalp issues she was experiencing. While it took her some time to embrace it, she’s so glad that she did! She is excited to see that women feel empowered to also embrace their natural hair and feels that this is the reason we are seeing an increase in models rocking their textured tresses. Tomiko is currently rocking a TWA, and she absolutely loves that she can wash and go, being that she is a busy wife and mother of twin sons.
Does Tomiko feel that natural hair in the fashion industry is a trend? What are her thoughts on natural hair bloggers being featured in hair care brand campaign instead of professional models? Is there camaraderie amongst black models in the fashion world? Watch the full interview here!