LaToya Harris
Update on Vanessa VanDyke: Student Who was Threatened with Suspension from School for Natural Hair

Vanessa VanDyke and her mother, Sabrina Kent, at The Real. Image from TheReal:

Back in 2013, 12-year-old Vanessa VanDyke was threatened by her school to be suspended for wearing her natural hair. Even though the Florida student and her mother, Sabrina Kent received support from people around the world, Vanessa’s self-esteem began to decline. In addition to her school’s threats, the young girl was  being bullied by her peers about her natural hair. Today, Vanessa VanDyke and her mom are singing a whole new tune!

Imagine if you were Vanessa’s mom. How would you respond? What what you do? You would probably be angry and upset, and you would probably try and get to the bottom of things. Well, Kent (who is also natural) was inspired to start her own natural hair care line called Vanessa’ s Essence Natural Hair Care. “I made this company for her and her benefit and also for the benefit of all the girls in the world with natural hair, “Sabrina told the hosts of “The Real“. Ms. Vandyke’s iconic picture of her with a yellow flower in her hair was the inspiration for the Vanessa’s Essence logo.

In addition to natural hair care, Vanessa and her mother use their hair care website to speak out against bullying. The Vanessa’s Essence website says, “The effects that bullying can have on someone’s self-esteem and their confidence is incredible, and we want to help others know that people are listening.” On the same page, the website lists the names and ages of children who lost their lives as a result of bullying.

Vanessa Vandyke is now 15 years old and still rocking her natural hair! She is a model, violinist, artist, and entrepreneur. Her Instagram account also says that she is an actress. Kudos to her and her mother, Sabrina! Together, they’ve helped to inspire girls and women around the world to keep rocking their natural hair, and that is awesome!


Author: LaToya Harris

Comment on this articleChanging attitudes about natural hair” is what we do at Natural Haircare News. Through informative articles, podcasts and videos, we go beyond just sharing the latest advice and tips on kinky, curly, wavy haircare – We shake things up and focus on the realities of wearing our hair natural. 

3 Responses to Update on Vanessa VanDyke: Student Who was Threatened with Suspension from School for Natural Hair

  1. Michelle Weatherspoon says:

    I apologize for the typos…

  2. Michelle Weatherspoon says:

    Vanessa, you are a beautiful representation of us natural women..I admire your mother for allowing you to .31st your natural beauty flourish and not allowing anyone to push you into u healthy options.

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