Stylist Gives Gabby Douglas A Hair Makeover: Helping Or Hurting Her?

Celebrity and What Not to Wear hairstylist Ted Gibson, like many of us, was probably one of many Americans who watched a 16 year old Gabby Douglas make history in the 2012 Olympics in London. Like many of us, he also heard about much of the criticism Gabby was getting over her slicked back ponytail. 

“I couldn’t believe it and still can’t,” Gibson, who has worked on the tresses of Anne HathawayAngelina JolieKate Gosselin and Ashley Greene, told The Daily Beast on Wednesday about the criticism Douglas received over her slicked-back ponytail. “You have this young girl doing amazing things, and the conversation becomes about her hair? It was ridiculous and shameful.”

I totally agree, Ted but here is where you lose me. If you felt it was shameful, why did you feel the need to change her? According to US Magazine, Ted Gibson lend Gabby his services giving her a hair makeover. Was he doing it for publicity? To help her self esteem? What was the true motive? 

So on Tuesday, Gibson, who also lends his talents on What Not to Wear, worked his mane magic on the Virginia Beach native and gave her a hair makeover that the teen couldn’t stop gushing about: frizz-free, center-parted waves that fall a few inches below her shoulders.

“Ted Gibson Is AWESOME!!! LOVE HIM SOO MUCH!!!” the 4-foot-11 tweeted on Tuesday. “A special thank you to my Gold Medal Celebrity Hair Stylist!”

Gibson shared Douglas’ electrifying energy by responding, “It’s 3am, just left Ted Gibson NYC. Love you [Gabrielle Douglas]. What an amazing young lady you are. #award winner #gibsongirlsruletheworld.”


And even though the 2012 London Olympics have wrapped for Douglas and her Fierce Five teammates — Aly Raisman, Jordyn Wieber, Kyla Ross and Mckayla Maroney — the wild ride has really just begun.

“I’m excited because she’s so young and I have a chance for input in the brand of Gabby,” the hair pro mused to The Daily Beast. “There are so many opportunities for someone like her to shine, and I get to be part of that on the ground floor. It’s pretty cool.

So this is where parts of the whole thing seem “wrong” to me. As an adult, an African American adult at that, shouldn’t you be defending Gabby? Shouldn’t you stand by your words and protect her rather than making her feel like “they” were right? Don’t get me wrong, he did a great job at whatever he did to her hair, but is it functional gymnast hair? No. So really what was the point. If Gabby was confused over the fuss of her hair, I can only imagine the confusion now. What is even more disappointing is that this grown man said ‘I have a chance for input in the brand of Gabby’ which leads me to believe that he definitely did this for a little extra shine. Sir, that is shameful. I can’t wait until we can stop uplifting our young women only when it seems like the cool thing to do and really practice what we preach. What he should have done as a professional who defended her hair was stick by what he said and tell her how people out here would die for what she has growing out of her scalp. Instead, he went for a photo-op. Well played.


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