Justin Bieber has a controversial new look.
The “Peaches” singer took to Instagram over the weekend to show off his signature blond locks appearing to be in the early stages of dreadlocks. In one pic, a shirtless Justin posted up alongside his wife Hailey Bieber while on vacation and wrote, “Back in action.” The following day, he shared a close-up of his knotty hair.
The look wasn’t well received by fans, some who called him out for cultural appropriation. “Didn’t you say you were educating yourself about black culture so what is this foolery,” wrote one, while another added, “J, please educate yourself on culture appropriation…. You shouldn’t be wearing dreads… With love.”
This is not the first time that Justin has styled his hair into dreadlocks. Back in 2016, he wore his hair that way and again faced accusations of cultural appropriation. He responded by sharing a video mocking his critics. “Being weird is fun’ if u r not weird I don’t like you,” he captioned it.
Following the controversy in 2016, The Guardian published an article addressing Bieber and the history of dreadlocks. “White people wearing dreadlocks has a fraught legacy in the Americas. And to many African Americans, it is a hairstyle that represents a reclamation of black identity,” wrote Syreeta McFadden. “It is a hairstyle of protest and beauty, a restoration of justice and rejection of western European (read: white) beauty standards.”
Bieber has not responded to the latest wave of backlash, but he did post a message after sharing the dreadlock pics. “It’s power in acknowledging our insecurities, WE ALL GOT EM,” he wrote.
Meanwhile, the superstar has collaborated on a song for DJ Khaled’s upcoming album. Last week, he performed for a small group of inmates at California State Prison in L.A. County.