If there’s one thing that is generally true of Cara Delevingne, it’s that she is not afraid to push boundaries. She has regularly tried to alter perceptions of beauty and normality, and now she is making her biggest stand yet.
In preparation for an upcoming film role, Cara has fully shaved her head and embraced the buzzcut look. While necessary for her part in Life in a Year opposite Jaden Smith, who himself is no stranger to questioning the status quo, Cara has also embraced the look as a sign that she is tired of conforming to expectations.
She made the initial splash with her new look at the Met Gala this week, as she arrived sporting a painted silver head in lieu of her normal flowing hair, and followed it up with a soul-searching Instagram message in which she admitted that “it is exhausting to be told what beauty should look like”.
There is no doubt that Cara has made a massive impression with the new look and her genuine belief in her universal message, and it is fair to say that it will surely inspire others to follow her lead and change their definitions and expectations of beauty. When that happens, it will only benefit wider society, as we delve further into an age where accepting the differences in people is front and centre in everyone’s minds.
Cara is not the only woman who has rocked the clean-shaven look. Let’s take a look at the others who, as she did, removed the hair for film roles and came up trumps with the results.
Charlize Theron took the shears to her head for her role in 2015’s blockbuster Mad Max: Fury Road and received rightful plaudits both for her performance in the movie and for the way in which she pulled off the style.
Natalie Portman lost her curls in rather more dramatic fashion for a central set-piece in the film V for Vendetta, and braved the cut being done on camera to lend authenticity to the film, continuing with genuinely shaved hair from that point on.
After the film was completed, Portman continued to rock the buzzcut for a little while, which shows a proper commitment to the style.
While not the most memorable film, what always sticks in the mind when one thinks about the film G.I. Jane is Demi Moore’s transformation into the shaven-headed military figure, Jordan O’Neil.
Her tough-as-nails approach to the loss of her hair for the role speaks not so much about perceptions of beauty as it does about perceptions of toughness in women, which her performance did a great deal to assist.
While most of the women mentioned here have undertaken their transformations to fulfil film roles, it would be remiss not to quickly mention a woman who undertook the style out of choice and has made it her own ever since. Since the early ’90s, Sinéad O’Connor has worn the cut hair with superb grace and to tremendous success.
It is rumoured she tried to grow it out once, but gave up on the attempt after being mistaken for Enya. Good call, Sinéad – stick to your style.
So Cara Delevingne has been the latest celebrity to prove that people can rock any look they choose. Let’s hope that this attitude prevails further in the future and people can rid themselves of the burden of society’s expectations.