“I feel like she smells like patchouli oil and weed”. This is the statement that Fashion Police star, Giuliana Rancic, deemed as comical. She was referring to Disney channel star, Zendaya Coleman’s, hairstyle for the Oscars this past Sunday. While each person is justly entitled to their own opinion, did this step over that thinly-veiled line between creative humor and contemptible wickedness?
Let’s first analyze the statements that the Fashion Police correspondent produced. When surveying social media, we noticed that many were not entirely knowledgeable about what “patchouli oil” entailed. We found a possible misconception. However, the direct connotation of this comment is indeed focused on smell. Therefore, we want to give you a complete window into the significance of the description Rancic chose to use when describing the faux (extension) dreadlocks Coleman wore in honor of her family.
Patchouli oil is described as a scent used within insect repellents. It derives from a species of plants called Pogostemon and is native to tropical regions within Asia, although prevalent in China at this time. This is the base definition of the scent description. Let’s delve deeper into the specific correlation or analogical criticism that Rancic had in mind when referencing the oil.
In relation to humans, patchouli oil is an oil worn by dirty hippies in lieu of showering or bathing. It is used to mask the scent of marijuana and body odor, but consequently creates a worse smell, according to the Urban Dictionary online.
With all that said, we get it. These types of shows maintain ratings by producing a level of candor, comedy, and jocose criticisms. Still, when is that line crossed? The biggest debate lies within the faux locs themselves. The same hairstyle was dawned by Kylie Jenner weeks ago for a photo-shoot. Here, they were described by the same correspondent as “chic and edgy”. This is what have many fans in an uproar.
Coleman certainly took offense and expressed her feelings on Instagram, deeming the comments as ignorant and misinformed. She went on to name highly, esteemed members of the African American community that don dreadlocks and to categorize each of them collectively in such a negative way was truly offensive.
Rancic responded to Zendaya’s outrage by apologizing on social media. She stated, “I was referring to a bohemian chic look. Had nothing to do with race and NEVER would”. Some would beg to differ after researching exactly what the oil mentioned previously is and the negative connotation that dreds are a direct correlation with weed.
What are your thoughts on the issue? Let us know in the comments below!