There are some women so flawless that it makes me want to say, "Okay, might as well go live in the woods because I will never be that cool." Lupita Nyong'o is one of these women. She's talented as hell, stunning as hell, stylish as hell... oh yeah, and she's great at braiding hair. Nyong'o revealed in a video for Vogue.com that she learned to braid hair hair while in college after a bad experience at a NYC braiding salon.
In the video, Nyong'o braids six of her closest friends' hair (I'm not even mad that I only have about six closest friends total) while telling an adorable story about how she learned to braid hair like a pro and intended to use this skill as her "side-hustle" while attending drama school. I share this with great bitterness because I, at 23 years old, still don't know how to braid hair period, let alone for cash. But alas, because Nyong'o is amazing, she didn't have the heart to actually charge money and so she's been braiding her friends' hair for free ever since.
What braiding did become was an unlikely asset for acting training — she credits the skill with keeping her awake during hours long classes at Hampshire and, later the Yale School of Drama, and for forging lasting, intimate relationships with the “genuine,” “honest,” “creative” friends who continue to “challenge me and require me to grow as a human being.”
Nyong'o has a deep personal connection with the braiding process, which she feels is akin to telling a story. She also reveals that she loves the texture of her hair because "you can do all sorts of interesting angular shapes with it." That's cool Lupita, you do that. I'll just be over here, practicing my French braid on a Barbie doll.