Chris Rock's Oscars joke about Jada Pinkett Smith puts alopecia, hair loss in spotlight

About a third of all women will experience some form of hair loss. While many choose to hide the condition, others are living out loud and proud.

News 12 Staff

Mar 28, 2022, 10:26 PM

Updated 842 days ago

Share:

In the wake of comedian Chris Rock's Oscars joke about actress Jada Pinkett Smith, many social media users are talking about hair loss and the stigmas that people who have the condition face every day.
About a third of all women will experience some form of hair loss. While many choose to hide the condition, others are living out loud and proud.
"Being bald, more often than you realize is the butt to so many people's jokes," says Sanah Jivani, of the Love Your Natural Self Foundation.
Jivani has alopecia, a condition that causes partial or complete baldness. It's the same condition Pinkett Smith has publicly struggled with. Jivani, like Pinkett Smith, has learned to embrace it.
"One day I started looking in the mirror and started saying, 'Hey, I'm bald and I'm beautiful. I am strong, I'm courageous, I'm brave,'" Jivani says, but adds that it took her years to build that confidence.
Some forms of alopecia can be treated. Kimberly Pryslak helps women experiencing hair loss in the Hudson Valley at Medi Tresse in Scarsdale. She says it can be devastating and have profound impacts on every aspect of life.
"I see women who don't want to socialize, they don't want to go out, they don't want to be a part of society because they feel they don't fit in," Pryslak explains.
Incidents like the one at the Oscars ceremony on Sunday shed light on why so many women choose to keep their condition private.
Jivani says she can relate to being publicly shamed for her baldness, which is why she started the nonprofit "Love Your Natural Self Foundation."
"People said mean things to me, but the things I said to myself were so much worse," she says.
The organization works with kids K-12 to promote self-love and acceptance. Jivani hopes that Sunday's incident serves as a teaching moment.
"I hope it starts a conversation about the courage it requires to show up as all of who you are," Jivani says.
Alopecia is also common among men and is known as male-pattern baldness.
Approximately 25% of men who inherit the condition start losing hair by the age of 21.


More from News 12
1:00
MUST SEE VIDEO: Lightning bolt almost hits New City man

MUST SEE VIDEO: Lightning bolt almost hits New City man

2:31
RELIEF ARRIVES! Sun and clouds with lower humidity today, great weather weekend ahead

RELIEF ARRIVES! Sun and clouds with lower humidity today, great weather weekend ahead

1:47
Thunderbolt 12: Thunderstorms and gusty winds cause damage throughout the Hudson Valley

Thunderbolt 12: Thunderstorms and gusty winds cause damage throughout the Hudson Valley

1:13
Headlines: Teen killed in crash only had learner's permit, nursing home assault, man arrested for threating to blow up social services

Headlines: Teen killed in crash only had learner's permit, nursing home assault, man arrested for threating to blow up social services

1:21
Over 1,200 Hudson Valley homes without power after storms

Over 1,200 Hudson Valley homes without power after storms

0:20
SPCA seeks help finding those who dumped 3 Collie mixes

SPCA seeks help finding those who dumped 3 Collie mixes

1:50
Live the lake life for a day on Lake Mahopac

Live the lake life for a day on Lake Mahopac

0:47
Pedal Your Way to Fun: New Hudson River boat offers unique social experience

Pedal Your Way to Fun: New Hudson River boat offers unique social experience

Hudson Valley Weather Photos

Hudson Valley Weather Photos

0:22
82-year-old man dies after possible drowning at Canopus Lake

82-year-old man dies after possible drowning at Canopus Lake

0:33
Orange County man faces life in prison for hiring hitman to kill neighbor

Orange County man faces life in prison for hiring hitman to kill neighbor

1:25
Police: Death of 2-year-old left in hot car in Monticello under investigation

Police: Death of 2-year-old left in hot car in Monticello under investigation

0:20
President Joe Biden tests positive for COVID-19 while campaigning in Las Vegas

President Joe Biden tests positive for COVID-19 while campaigning in Las Vegas

1:51
Toddler rescued from hot car in Nanuet parking lot after father accidentally leaves keys inside, according to police

Toddler rescued from hot car in Nanuet parking lot after father accidentally leaves keys inside, according to police

1:50
Jury finds Metro-North primarily responsible for 2015 fatal crash in Mount Pleasant that killed 6

Jury finds Metro-North primarily responsible for 2015 fatal crash in Mount Pleasant that killed 6

1:28
News 12 checks in with O& R to see how utility is handling heat, storm

News 12 checks in with O& R to see how utility is handling heat, storm

1:49
New Arts: Westchester CEO gives News 12 sneak peek of new exhibit

New Arts: Westchester CEO gives News 12 sneak peek of new exhibit

1:39
‘I thought it looked horrible.’ Ardsley residents criticize design of new village logo

‘I thought it looked horrible.’ Ardsley residents criticize design of new village logo

1:44
Newburgh school board meeting descends into chaos, board and community divided

Newburgh school board meeting descends into chaos, board and community divided

0:22
Spring Valley first responders rescue baby deer from drowning

Spring Valley first responders rescue baby deer from drowning