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If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Zendaya through her roles, red-carpet appearances, and photoshoots, it’s that she has a chameleon-like knack for transformation. We saw it most recently in the Netflix film Malcolm & Marie, where she takes on the role of Marie, the stunning yet sullen girlfriend of Malcolm (played by John David Washington). The two graced a new W Magazine spread to discuss their recent project and respective careers, and to showcase their undeniable on-screen chemistry in a new format.
For the shoot, Zendaya and her team brought to life a series of stunning looks inspired by the 1950s and Slim Aaron’s iconic image of C.Z. Guest, a wealthy socialite. The star’s longtime stylist Law Roach discussed the many pieces that went into bringing the shoot to life in extraordinary detail, from her dresses to her blonde hair. Roach told W that Zendaya’s blonde wig was a “very important” part of bringing this persona to life for the images.
According to Roach, Zendaya’s teased blonde updo, styled by Kim Kimble, was designed to directly reference traditional white-women stereotypes. “The entire outfit—the jewels, the gorgeous gown, the stilettos—they don’t make the same statement without the blonde hair,” he told the publication.
It isn’t unusual for Zendaya and her team to utilize beauty to create stunning looks and make statements. She recently attended the Critics Choice Awards with a half-braided updo to honor the late Cicely Tyson, and in November 2020, she donned a pearl headwrap and graphic eyeliner to channel Donyale Luna, the first Black woman to cover Vogue. Like a true artist, Zendaya embraces every opportunity to play dress-up to tell stories, and she’s creating her own history of stunning — and meaningful — beauty moments in the process.
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