If you’re a working actress or model of colour, past experience has taught you to arrive on-set with a makeup kit in tow. Despite the raised awareness of ethnic beauty, hairstylist Ryan Reed and makeup artist Shauna Llewellyn still hear far too many stories of burnt hair and the wrong shade of red lipstick.
“Hair’s the big one,” says Reed ruefully. “You hear things like hairdressers going to touch people up with water bottles and you just don’t do that. Don’t wet the hair! It’s just been freshly relaxed.”
“Or people making the big key-rate money, and sending these actors to black salons on the weekend, [for hairstyles] that they basically maintain during the shoot week,” cuts in Llewellyn. “We hear it all the time: ‘We’re so glad to see you, we didn’t know who we’d get.’”