Nina Simone's 'Feeling Good' Video Is a Love Letter to Black Beauty

Nina Simone’s iconic single, “Feeling Good,’ was released in 1965, and it finally has a music video it deserves. 

Directed by Sara Lacombe, the song’s first-ever music video is a collaboration between Dove, the CROWN Act, Verve Records, UMe and the Nina Simone Charitable Trust. According to The Root, the video aims to continue Simone’s legacy and tell stories that inspire Black female empowerment and oppose societal expectations and beauty standards.

In a press release, a rep from the Nina Simone Charitable Trust explained that “Feeling Good” was the perfect song for the project because Simone was “a tireless champion of individual freedom of expression. She inspired the young, gifted and Black to celebrate their culture, reminding them their souls were intact just the way they were.”

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The video features four generations of Black women “as they live and express their love for their hair through various means of self-expression.” One woman dances, another one finds solace in nature, while the youngest plays in her family home, happily surrounded by her family. Throughout the video, the Black women sport different natural hairstyles, a simple ode to the versatility and beauty of Black hair.

In a statement, the Executive Vice President and COO of Unilever North America — Dove’s Parent Company — Beauty and Personal Care said: “Dove is on a mission to change beauty and redefine narrow beauty standards. It is not acceptable for any of us to change our natural identity to gain employment or access to school. Unfortunately, 80 percent of Black women reported having to change their hair to fit into workplace norms. This is exactly why Dove will continue to champion to end race-based hair discrimination nationwide with The CROWN Act.”

She added: “As a Black woman who has worn textured hairstyles for the past 25 years, and as mother of a 15-year old daughter who also wears a textured hair style, this legislation is deeply personal to me. Now is the time to pass The CROWN Act and eliminate this barrier for children and adults everywhere because we all deserve to FEEL GOOD about the way we wear our hair. This video expresses just that—what it’s like to feel good when you’re free to be you.”

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The CROWN Act — which stands for Create a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair — was conceptualized because Black women are over 80 percent more likely to report being judged more harshly on their looks than other women at work and are 1.5 times more likely to be sent home from work simply because of their hair. As of Monday, June 7, 12 states have passed the Act to make hair-based discrimination illegal. 

You can sign The CROWN Act petition here to help eradicate hair-based discrimination.


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