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"OITNB" Actress Dascha Polanco Gets Real About Her Hair

Dascha Polanco sets the record straight about her new do, and why we should expect more surprises from her in the future. "As I'm speaking to you, my 6-year-old has my wig on. He's a superhero right now. It's so cute!"

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Orange Is The New Black's Dascha Polanco debuted a new look in the midst of New York Fashion Week via an instagram post.

Getty Images Frederick M. Brown

Long gone was her usual dark brown hair with honey highlights, and in its place was a gorgeous gray-to-lavender ombrè. It was an instant hit during fashion week. Polanco spoke to BuzzFeed about why she decided to get bold with her look, and what's next.

She worked with one of the best celebrity hairstylists.

"I worked with Cynthia Alvarez. I said, "Let me try out one of your grays and let's play with it." So, she made a wig for me. She's amazing. It's the perfect blend, beautiful ombrè. Usually my hair looks kind of chic when I'm at a public event, but I wanted to play. She's working on other things for me as well. You might see me a lot in the changing hair."

She's always loved having bright colors in her hair.

"I've always been creative with my hair. I was born with a lot of hair, and it's gotten thinner throughout the years. Culturally hair is very important in the Dominican Republic. Growing up I've always played around with dyed streaks, magenta streaks, bleach blonde, short, long, straight. I love it."

From her aunt to her 6-year-old son, Polanco's family loves to play with hair.

"I grew up with my aunt working at a salon, and my mom was a cosmetologist. I've seen their pieces growing up, wash and sets, roller sets, doobies. I loved watching all of that. It's important for a woman I think, with her hair. When it's clean and when it's done it uplifts you and makes you feel good. As I'm speaking to you, my 6 year-old has my wig on. He's a superhero right now. It's so cute!"


She's out here representing for the curvy girls.

"I'm not going to lie and say I wasn't nervous. I thought this could be a huge hit or a total disaster. But I just went with my gut. People don't expect curvy women, plus-size women, or Latinas to be chic, be in fashion, or take risks. It's only my opinion, but I feel like we're expected to taper ourselves a little, or be more conservative. I wanted to change that."

She's sick of wearing all black.

"When I'm having a fitting, I tell [my publicist] Alyssa, "Really? They had to do all black? They couldn't throw in a little red?" I don't want to wear black. I want to wear white. Let my body show. These are things I'm taking the risk for because it helps me to love myself."

She's learning to accept her body as it is.


"I got tired of being insecure. Tired of feeling like, Why can't I do that because of my shape? We have one life to live. You have to make yourself happy. You have to feel comfortable in your own skin. When I talk about those insecurities and about loving yourself, it's because I'm working on it at the same time. I'm still in that process of learning how to accept and embrace my imperfections."

She reads your comments and they help her.

"There are a lot of people who send me nice comments about how I help them feel good, or they thought they could never wear that, or, "You make me love myself," and it's hard because I'm still working on that. With as little as I've done, if I can help people who are in need of that, that's what I'll continue to do even when I'm at a bigger step in my life."

Everybody has permission to play with their hair in 2014.

Getty Images Mark Sagliocco

"It's 2014, baby. And you know what? We have to play. It's time to play. There's so much available to provide, share, and motivate each other. If something as simple as changing your hair makes you feel good, go for it. Why not?"