Earlier this month, Representative Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) shared that she had developed alopecia. In a memorable (and instantly viral) video, she shared her hair history with The Root, and revealed her bald head for the first time.
“The reality is that I’m black, I’m a black woman, and I’m a black woman in politics, and everything I do is political. You might overly intellectualize a bit and say ‘it’s just hair’ …and that’s true, but I still want it,” she said in the video. “I’m trying to find my way here, and I believe going public will help.”
On January 30, two weeks after her official announcement, Pressley stood on the House floor wig-free for the first time. The beautiful moment is a testament to Pressley’s strength in the face of the diagnosis. Her ability to advocate for her constituents with her (gorgeous) bald head also shows how much Pressley’s confidence has grown since she learned she had alopecia. As she explained to The Root, the first time she had to wear a wig to cover her baldness was on the House floor, to vote on impeachment, after which she “hid in a bathroom stall.” Now she’s proud and glowing, without a hair on her head. (But with, we’ll note, fabulous red lipstick and long, beautiful eyelashes.)
Pressley returned to the House to speak in favor of the Comprehensive Credit Reporting Enhancement, Disclosure, Innovation, and Transparency (CREDIT) Act, her bill that would protect consumers from predatory credit reporting practices, says the Boston Globe. The bill passed in the House, and will now move on to the Senate.