Zara Employee Asked To Take Out “Too Extreme” Box Braids

by Danniah Daher


Cree Ballah, 20, went to work on March 23 with ten thick black braids pulled back into two ponytails.

According to City News, Zara management told Cree, “Your hair is too extreme for the Zara store. Please take it down.” Two managers escorted Ballah outside and asked her to “fix” her hair. They informed her that hair color wasn’t the issue, but that the braids were unprofessional. Ballah began to cry. She experimented with different hairstyle options for the management’s approval—a low bun seemed to satisfy their expectations. 

Zara management told Ballah, “We’re not trying to offend you, but we’re going for a clean professional look and the hairstyle you have now is not the look for Zara,” reports CBS news. 

After two days, the university student and Zara employee decided to remove her $200 braids. Ballah told City News, “My hair type is linked to my race, so to me, I felt like it was direct discrimination against my ethnicity in the sense of what comes along with it. My hair type is out of my control, and I try to control it to the best of my ability, which wasn’t up to standard for Zara.”

Ballah has filed a complaint with Zara officials and is considering quitting her job. City News also reported that Zara has stated that the company “has no formal policy regarding employees’ hairstyles: we expect all employees to ensure that they present a professional appearance that enables them to serve our valued customers.”

All I know is that this world still has a very long way to go and that if I had Cree Ballah’s face and braids, I’d never stop looking in the mirror. Stand up for yourself, Cree. You’re beautiful and professional and perfect, and you don’t deserve this shit. 

Image via Facebook / Cree Quirion-Ballah 

More from BUST 

Fuckboys: Who Are They And Why Should Women Stay Away?

To Shave Or Not To Shave? Real Answers From Women And Men About The Hair Down There 

How My Brain Tumor Changed Me 

You may also like

Get the print magazine.

The best of BUST in your inbox!

Subscribe to Our Weekly Newsletter

About Us

Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

©2023 Street Media LLC.  All Right Reserved.