Why dancer Oti now loves showing off her real hair
SHE has no problem showing off her sizzling hip action and fancy footwork to millions on the dancefloor.
But Strictly Come Dancing professional Oti Mabuse has admitted that it was not until recently that she felt comfortable enough with her image to reveal her real hair to the public.
South African Miss Mabuse, 30, posted a picture of her natural look on Instagram during lockdown.
Speaking to Red magazine about the decision, the dancer, usually seen in wigs and hairpieces, said: ‘There were so many people saying they’d never seen my real hair, as I had never wanted to show that side of myself before.
‘It was really only close friends and the Strictly pros who had seen me like this. It was a thing, you know?
‘ You need to feel comfortable opening up about what you look like, before you decide whether or not you want to share that with other people.’ Miss Mabuse, who won last year’s competition with former Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher, is currently spending two weeks with the other professionals at a Buckinghamshire hotel. There, they are isolating and practising their group routines for the BBC1 show.
Strictly, which normally runs from September, is expected to begin a pared-down nine-week run in late October. Miss Mabuse, who joined the programme in 2015, also spoke of the recent Black Lives Matter protests across the world.
‘Being the first black South African woman to do things in my industry has been an asset,’ she told the magazine. ‘I have so many opinions about [racism], but they’re personal.
‘I don’t feel I can represent everyone because people have different experiences. What’s great is that now we feel empowered to share how we feel.’
■ Read the full interview with Oti Mabuse in the October issue of Red, on sale today.
‘You need to feel comfortable’