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Curly Nikki

Chaka Khan Talks Natural Hair

By January 27th, 202190 Comments
Reposting ’cause Chaka’s on Piers Morgan… right now! Tune into CNN!

Chaka Khan Talks Natural Hair
Yes, you read right! The queen of BIG hair is On the Couch! The legendary singer/songwriter and 10 time Grammy award winning diva gave me a moment of her time to reflect on her hair story. There aren’t even words to describe how amazing it was to speak with the woman who inspired an entire generation. Her music, her fashion, her hair… all so revolutionary and timeless. When I asked her how it felt to be a natural hair icon, she showed a humility that doesn’t always accompany such greatness, and said she had no idea. She reflects-

My mother used to braid my hair in three braids- – one one each side that she’d pin at the top, and one in the back. There was a lot of duplication… she would use the hot comb and we’d wear the Page Boy. That’s pretty much it. I was wearing a perm when I was 15 or 16, which was also around the time the Afros came out. I remember, I cut all of the perm out and wore a short ‘fro for a long time. I wore it for years before growing it out.

Chaka Khan Talks Natural Hair
When asked how she felt about her TWA (teeny weeny afro), she responded,

I loved it. That’s how I wore it on my first album cover with Rufus. I was actually pregnant at the time. Since then, throughout my career, I’ve experimented with a thousand colors and a thousand styles… everything from microbraids to blow outs. I’ve done it all.

Chaka Khan Talks Natural HairChaka still reps team natural to this day but enjoys experimenting with different looks–

Sometimes I’ll go for a straighter look, but I really don’t like straight hair on me, it’s not my favorite hair at all. I find it… unlikely [laughter]. I like a lot of hair. I’m about the wild things.

Today, Chaka admits, she’s “not really fussy” when it comes to her hair and is a self-proclaimed “wash and wear” girl. Most days, she just spritzes with a conditioner and keeps it moving. Her favorite products are Mixed Chicks and Peter Lamas. She goes on-

For me, it’s the wilder the better. I love big hair! I don’t like the coiffed look. I’m not a coif hair girl. I don’t like to look neat like I just walked out of the beauty shop!

Much to the dismay of her stylist, there have been times that she’s spritzed her freshly straightened and barrel curled hair with water to give it some “umph!”

Chaka Khan Talks Natural Hair
Chaka is just as busy as ever. Last year, she not only got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (’bout damn time), but she and her former band Rufus, were jointly nominated for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame! She continues to tour and is clocking tons of studio hours in prep for her next album. She is humbled that we in the natural hair community tout her as Natural Hair Style and Hair Icon and appreciates our support and love.


Keep up with Chaka and her tour on her website-
and on Facebook-


  • LLe says:

    Great interview. I've been a fan of Chaka Khan since her days with Rufus. I have to admit to not believing all that hair was her hair. Back in the day, the big afro style wig similar to her hair has was popular…

  • watkinsabob says:

    Wait, Wait, Wait!!!! That was always all hers???!!! Wow, hotness!!

    Sooooo, since we in the business of clearing up real and fake…what about the next hair Diva #1…Dianna Ross. I needs to know!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Chaka Khan, chaka khan, ha!!! We feel for you Chaka!!!! Just got finished watching Rufus and Chaka on YT performing "Do you love what you feel" and O Lawd, that woman is and was!! HOTT!

  • marianela says:

    I really love Chaka's hair, it looks so defined and beautiful. I can't wait to see my hair that long.

  • Gatas Negras says:

    LOVE Chaka, her hair and outfits from the 70s/80s! And I appreciate her more for speaking out on what's going on in the music business after Whitney's death!

  • Erica says:

    OMG!!! Nikki, you have outdone yourself girl. I've been in love with Chaka, her voice and her hair my entire life. I'm so happy to read that she is repping team natural. When I wear my hair "big" I'm always channeling Ms. Chaka or Ms. Ross (circa 1983 Central Park). Good interview CN.

  • Hershe_82 says:

    Oh WOW thank you so much for this interview Nikki. I love love love Chaka Khan always have and always will, I grew up off of her music and I've always adored her "Big Hair"! She is one of many influential natural hair ladies who inspired me to step out on faith and love my natural tresses. 2 thumbs up for this one!!

  • Spokenheart says:

    wow!!!!! this is so great! i loved this article, she is so amazing and so is her hair!

  • LBell says:

    How'd I miss this the first time around? I'm old enough to remember Chaka Khan from the Rufus days. Her hair was awesome then and like others I assumed she'd started supplementing with weave as she got older.

    "For me, it's the wilder the better. I love big hair! I don't like the coiffed look. I'm not a coif hair girl. I don't like to look neat like I just walked out of the beauty shop!"

    This is TOTALLY me. πŸ™‚ Thanks for this, Nikki!

  • Anonymous says:

    What a great interview Nik!!! Thank you for the eye opener, because all this time I thought she was rocking super fab wigs. Go Chaka!

  • Samantha Nneamaka says:

    She is phenomenal !!!!! she is still too gorgeous for me to handle . lol

  • Naturalgirl says:

    I have loved Chaka's music from the start, but that is not her real hair. lets be real if we're going to talk about natural hair, back in the day Chaka didn't even wear her own hair then. on the back of one of her albums there is a picture of her in the studio and her real hair is super low. I believe it was the smoking room album.

  • Doris says:

    When I was in high school, the men would have pictures in their room of women. At that time it was Farrah Fawcett the pin up, but in the black community it was Chaka Khan! lol

  • Jillian says:

    Thank you for this great interview.

  • Anonymous says:

    Nikki, now you done did it, you bought us CHAKA KHAN!!!!!! I have always loved her hair, (and Valerie Simpson's braids) and I can't wait to have big hair too!!!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    This interview was off the hook love Chaka, love the hair!!!! this made my day cant wait to have big hair!!!! congrats Nikkie always a great job!!!! thanks Pam

  • Anonymous says:

    yes, i agree get Ms. Diana Ross, the Boss too. And get her daughter, another curly hair icon, Tracy Ellis Ross. puh-leeezzzz. πŸ™‚

    and Stacy Dash has gorgeous curly hair too. πŸ˜‰

  • Anonymous says:

    ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Chaka!!!! Where was I when this interview was posted? This is THE woman! Amazing voice, beauty, and HAIR. I have always wanted my hair to look like Chaka's. Her hair never looks out of style to me. Thank you getting an interview with you.

    you made my year. πŸ™‚

  • Unknown says:

    Love the article. She is a true inspiration, and yes, her big hair is GORGEOUS!!!!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    "For me, it's the wilder the better. I love big hair! I don't like the coiffed look. I'm not a coif hair girl. I don't like to look neat like I just walked out of the beauty shop!" I just had an ah-ha moment reading this interview. What a fantastic role model!!! I am ALWAYS trying to make my hair PERFECT…perhaps I need to stop????

  • LaLaLovely76 says:

    I loooove Chaka!!! Hair and all!!

  • Karin says:

    This interview was such a blessing. Hearing Chaka's velvety voice on the video brought back such great feelings from back in the day. Thank you for that.

  • MelMelBee says:

    Nik…I just keep coming back and rereading this interview…..and singing still……"I'm every woman…It's only Me"……Ok……I'm done! Please post this on the "popular posts" list……..

  • Unknown says:

    I just fainted! This is the interview I have been waiting on. Nikki you rock!!!

  • socialitedreams says:

    loooooove it!

  • MommieDearest says:

    Nikki, you are the BOMB!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Yea, Nikki commented on my statement thank you–I knew I wasn't alone! πŸ™‚ Anon 92/1/12 9:40 AM

  • KC says:

    Yesssss!!! Chaka is my hair/fashion inspiration! Great interview πŸ™‚

  • The Amazing Baby says:

    screaminglike a 12 yr old!!! is this the interview that had you doing the tootsie roll???
    she is my hair idol, all my life!
    She glows… woah.

  • Anonymous says:

    OMGosh!:-O I had to do a double take with this one so when you said, "Yes you read right" at the beginning of the article, it definitely applied to me! LOL! Great job Nikki on landing an interview with Chaka Khan! Go Nikki, go Nikki, go Nikki! (Cabbage patching right along with you!)

    -Curly Swan

  • Anonymous says:

    Brilliant! Let's get Diana Ross on the couch next!

  • Anonymous says:


  • Anonymous says:

    Don't hurt emm Nik! You're killing these interviews! Keep up the good work. CHAKA!!!!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    AHHHHHHHHHH YESSSSS!!!!! ITS ABOUT TIME. I remember noticing her around 1996-[1998?] I was around 4 or 6 at the time and it wa sher hair that I notice first about her. She has always been my hair idol and I am still working on getting my hair like that. Its funny that you posted that song bc everytime i listen to it i see myself singing on stage, that and "Maybe My Baby"

  • Anonymous says:

    Y'all killin a sista today. I was 1st drooling over Malcom Jamal Warner now Chaka Khan. I can't get NO work done today!

  • Anonymous says:

    YYYYEEEEAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! No you didn't get Chaka Khan on the couch!!! All together ladies, "through the fire, to the limit…through the fire, to the limit…" That's the jam!!!

  • Laxmi from says:

    OMG!!! I have goose bumps! Yayyy, Go Nikki! Great interview πŸ™‚

  • Anonymous says:

    CHAKAAAAA!!! This interview made my day!

  • Anonymous says:

    I LOVE it!

  • T Monique says:

    I was giddy when I saw this

  • Anonymous says:

    OMG….CHaka Khan……

    Thanks so much, Nikki for interviewing her….

    OMG….Chaka Khan…..

    Love, Monika

  • Anonymous says:


  • Anonymous says:

    Fantastic interview Nikki. Next up….Diana Ross? I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

  • Aisa of 4UsNaturals says:

    I am so jealous. That is my girl and I love big hair too. She's definitely an icon and her song was just on this morning on my ride home from work. Talking about jamming. Can't wait til my hair is like hers. You won't be able to pay me to hide it.

  • MelMelBee says:

    OMG….I haven't even read it yet, but I have to say "SHUT UP NIK….CHAKA????? I Don't believe it"…..Ok, I do believe it, because it's posted…..but WOW!!!!!!!!

    (singing loudly in my office) I'm every woman…it's only me!!!!!!

  • Candace4life says:

    She is gorgeous and a great singer love ya. Her eye candy boyfriend is yummy as well.

  • Goombagirl says:

    Bows to my phone at the mere mention of my Queen Hair Idol on the first day of Black history month….

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm sooo impressed Nikki…Chaka Kahn !!! Really! Love her..takes me back to the good ol' days..Always loved her hair..Now i will be singing her songs all day.

  • Chicago Chica says:

    OMG! Thank you for this interview! I have always looked Chaka's look, and her hair is on point!

  • Anonymous says:

    Excellent interview CN! I'm definitely a Chaka fan!

  • Allie Well says:

    Enjoyed the interview and you are making big moves Nikki!

  • Anonymous says:

    The only thing I could have wished for this interview post was more pics!!!!! I love her wild hair!

  • Anonymous says:

    I always assumed they were wigs too, but I bet she uses them like everybody else does. Her hair is gorgeous and big.

  • CurlyInTheA says:

    @Anonymous 9:40, Not gonna front, all these years I thought it was a wig, too! Not bad if it is, but now it's even more gorgeous knowing it's her hair!

  • Unknown says:

    Ahhhhhhh! I love you, Chaka!I literally let out a giddy squeal when I saw the post title. This interview turned my crappy morning into a much better one. She's the queen of big hair. Nikki, you've outdone yourself!

  • Anonymous says:

    My ex-boyfriend of years ago, used to date Chaka before the fame. They went to the same high school (she indeed have the TWA, he told me)!

    I love her, I used to be able to hit those notes when I was in chorus (age 15-16) when Sweet Thang came out πŸ™‚

    I always wondered about her hair though, it was always said it was a wig but no wig I know looked that real…hmmmm Great interview, Nikki…girl, we crown you: Queen Interviewer of the Celebrities with Natural Hair

  • Rhonda C says:

    Nik, Major score! I love Cha-ka Khan! Her hair matches her personality!

  • Rhonda C says:

    Nik, Major score! I love Cha-ka Khan! Her hair matches her personality!

  • Jay-Jay says:

    I was just staring at the first pic for a long time before I started reading the interview….lol I've always LOVED Chaka Khan growing up and tried to mimic her hair when my pressed hair would sweat out. I love big hair!!!

  • KJ says:

    Since I was a little girl I have LOVED her style and hair. She is a hair ICON to me!

  • Anonymous says:

    awwwwwww! Look at lil Chaka Khan! This was great CN, thank you both!

  • Rhonda says:

    She's always been my shero. Love you Chaka!

  • Anonymous says:

    OMG *screams* Chaka!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Nikki girl, you're killing it hun! This was a great interview with a great woman. I love that big hair!

  • Kudos says:

    *can't wait til my hair grows out, can't wait til my hair grows out*

  • Anonymous says:

    Wow. Just wow!

  • KimG says:

    I stopped what I was doing at work to read this interview. She was and is my hair idol. OMG!

  • Anonymous says:

    Little Chaka is a cutie! As usual, great interview Nikki!

  • Anonymous says:


  • Pat says:

    Wonder why it took them so long to give her a star. She's one of the best of all time. Her voice is not of this world.

  • Pecancurls says:

    Nik congratulations on a "fantabulous" interview!! I love Ms. Chaka and her big hair and big voice!! I saw her in concert several years ago and she brought it!!

  • Anonymous says:

    This is so huge! Thanks for getting her and thanks for sharing!

  • Pecancurls says:

    Congrats on a "fantabulous" interview Nik!! I love Ms. Chaka and her big hair and big voice. I saw her in concert several years ago and she works it!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Great interview Nikki *whoop whoop two snaps in Z formation* My 14yr old is infatuated with her hair, and calls herself little Chaka.

  • Loren says:

    #WINNING. You scored big this time woman. I'm so proud of you!

  • Anonymous says:

    That's one of my favorite songs too! Great interview. I love the young picture of her, too cute!

  • Anonymous says:


  • Anonymous says:

    Chaka!!!!!!!!!! Excellent interview!

  • CURLYNIKKI says:

    Thanks ladies! Cabbage patching… yes. Tootsie rolling… yes! I've been pressing her people for 2 long years. PERSISTENCE pays y'all!

  • ATWC says:

    Great work Nikki! I know you were cabbage patching all cray…

  • Anonymous says:

    The irony of this post, as I was just preparing to purchase my ticket to see her in concert! I love Chaka and I love her hair!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Great interview!

  • PurpleRain1003 says:

    Oh. Em. Gee! Love, love, LOVE this! I remember being a little kid watching "I Feel For You" and loving that big, wild hair! Thanks Nikki!

  • Tanya says:

    Great interview! I'm a fan from the Rufus days. Her voice is still unmatched.

  • Afropean Queen says:

    ohhhhh man, I am with Gina!!!!!!!!! When I saw that headline, I was like WHAT!!!!!!!!!! Love her hair!!!!!!!! Great interview Nikki!!!!!!

  • aj williams says:

    Omg! How amazing! I bow down to the Queen….

  • Anonymous says:

    I ADORE Chaka! She is ageless & her hair is EVERY.THING!

  • Anonymous says:

    Talk about amazing, what a great thing to wake up to. Chaka is still my favorite artist. Congrats on the star!

  • Anonymous says:

    Damn! Go Nikki! Go Chaka! I'm a fan forever!

  • Unknown says:

    I wish you could hear how loud I just screamed! I LOVE Chaka Khan. Great interview!

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