Gwen Stefani's 'Dreadlocks' Are Dividing The Internet & She's Accused Of Cultural 'Dress Up'

It's giving us Adele vibes.

Senior Global Editor
Gwen Stefani shows off her hair. Right: Gwen Stefani with Sean Paul in 'Light My Fire.'

Gwen Stefani shows off her hair. Right: Gwen Stefani with Sean Paul in 'Light My Fire.'

It’s the year 2022 and Gwen Stefani is once again being accused of ripping off another culture with her look — and this time, it’s all about dreadlocks.

Internet users have been putting Stefani on blast for the “dreadlocks” she seems to be wearing in Light My Fire, her latest video with Jamaican singer Sean Paul.

The video shows Stefani in a black, yellow and green outfit — the colours of the Jamaican flag — with her hair done into thick braids and knotted at the top.

"Not Gwen Stefani giving it the full Faye Tozer dreadlocks in a music video in 2022," wrote one critic.

"No one can appropriate a culture the way Gwen Stefani does," wrote another user, citing a few other problematic moments from the last few decades.

Many of Stefani critics pointed out that we've seen her do this sort of thing before. She's worn Indigenous clothes, donned a bindi and put her hair into Bantu knots in the past.

British singer Adele also got ripped for wearing Bantu knots to an event a few years back.

For the record, cultural appropriation means "copying or using the customs and traditions of a particular group or culture," especially when the copier is from a more dominant or powerful group in society, according to the Oxford dictionary.

However, her stylist says she's not actually wearing dreadlocks in the video — and that they talked about cultural appropriation while designing her look.

"It isn't 'locs,' it's fishtail braids and that's a very white side of hair braids," stylist Savannah Baker told World Music Views after the outrage erupted.

She added that she had a "long conversation about cultural appropriation" with Stefani, and that she spoke to "various Jamaicans" about the colours before adding them to Stefani's costume.

Stefani hasn't addressed the outcry, but she's had plenty of people defending her, from fans to some particularly enthusiastic right-wing pundits.

The new video is Sean Paul's most popular on YouTube in the last four months.

Josh Elliott
Senior Global Editor
Josh Elliott is a Senior Editor for Narcity’s Global Desk focused on celebrity interviews and is based in Toronto, Ontario.