Meghan Markle, Mariah Carey Bond Over Natural Hair Struggles

Mariah Carey, Meghan Markle
Tim Rooke/Shutterstock; Matt Baron/Shutterstock

Hair bonds! Meghan MarkleAnd Mariah CareyThey spoke out about their experiences as biracial females with curly hair and shared their stories.

The “Obsessed” singer, 53, appeared on the Tuesday, August, 30, episode of Markle’s podcast, “Archetypes,” during which they discussed their natural hair struggles. The 41-year-old Duchess of Sussex praised Carey and recalled how Carey had inspired her as a young girl. Markle explained that Carey’s 1993 music video for “Dreamlover” made her feel seen as the Grammy winner showed off her coily texture in the visual.

Carey found the experience a little daunting. “The ‘Dreamlover’ video … people were saying, ‘girl next door,’ because there was also this ambiguity about me, racially, that fed into that, and those curls,” the “Honey” artist said.

She continued: “Here’s the thing — they didn’t know how to do my hair, because if it was a white hairdresser that had never dealt with textured hair, they would tend to do a different thing. And my hair would be like, ‘You’re not doing that!’” Carey added: “And then if somebody that had only dealt with ethnic hair, it would become too much product and too much weight.”

Markle echoed similar sentiments, sharing that she too felt “shellacked” by the “heavy hair grease” often used on her mane.

Carey went on to explain that she was also met with adversity growing up, sharing that “nobody” knew what to do with hair when she was little. (Carey’s mother, Patricia Carey, is white and her father, Alfred Carey — who died in 2002 — was black.)

Meghan Markle Talks Black Hair Struggles With Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey at Radio City Music Hall in New York at the 33rd Grammy Awards, 1991.
Peter Heimsath/Shutterstock

“I think sometimes when it’s the other way around, you get the benefits of someone who’s dealt with textured hair,” the vocalist said, seemingly implying that it may be a bit easier for a biracial child if the mother is Black.

Markle shared her story, recalling a time when Jeanette, her maternal grandmother would wash her hair in her kitchen. “She’d go, ‘Just hold on to the sink,’ and I would grip my little hands on both sides,” the Suits alum said. (Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland, is black and her father, Thomas Markle, is white.)

Carey and Markle also discussed how to reclaim positive meanings of certain words.

After the chat, the GlitterStar called the Bench author a “diva,” which made Markle a little nervous.

Meghan Markle Talks Black Hair Struggles With Mariah Carey

Meghan Markle.
News Licensing/MEGA

“I think it’s both [a compliment and a criticism],” Carey told Markle, adding that the term was initially meant to describe the “grandeur” of an operatic voice and powerhouse woman.

“As things evolved [in] the past, whatever, 20 years, it became, like, a diva means you’re a successful woman, usually, but also … a b-i-t-c-h,” Carey continued. “It’s not OK for you to be a boss. It’s not OK for you to be a strong woman.”

Markle, however, admitted that she believed Carey was dissing Markle at first.

“You couldn’t see me, obviously, but I started to sweat a little bit … I just kept thinking, in that moment, was my girl crush coming to a quick demise? Does she actually not see me?” the California native said.

Markle added: “When she said ‘diva,’ she was talking about the way that I dress, the posture, the clothing, the ‘fabulousness’ as she sees it. She meant diva as a compliment, but I heard it as a dig … In that moment, as she explained to me, she meant it as chic, as aspirational. And how one very charged word can mean something different for each of us, it’s mind-blowing to me.”