Oprah Lets Hair Go Au Naturel for Cover of 'O' Magazine

O Oprah Magazine September Cover - P 2012

O Oprah Magazine September Cover - P 2012

The media icon's hair is always sleek and shiny, like after a blow dry, but she is letting her hair go frizzy for her September issue. Could a 'fro be the next big thing?

It's hard to imagine it, but Oprah Winfrey says when she's not in front of the cameras, she lets her hair do it's natural thing and go wavy and coarse. Now she's actually gone what she calls "unencumbered" for the cover of her big September issue of O. She is sporting a major, well - you'd have to call it a 'fro. And what better way to sell copies of the biggest and most closely watched issue of the year?

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The theme of the issue (out Aug. 7) is makeovers, so the frizzy hair goes with the theme. Oprah says she's often been tempted to cut off her unruly hair very short like Camille Cosby - but Bill Cosby advised her not to. Turns out, changing her hairstyle for all her O covers has proved very successful.

There are already web mentions that her on-camera hair has been relaxed - or that regularly, she sports a weave, and she took it out for a while. It reminds us of Chris Rock's fabulous documentary about Afro American women and their obsession with their hair. A number of stars actually appeared in it, talking about weaves, which has become an entire industry.

Winfrey actually admitted to a TV audience last year that she went bald at age 23, when she was a tv anchorwoman in Baltimore.

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"I had thick hair, and it messed up the chroma key, which is that blue wall they put behind you," Winfrey said. "And the news director came to me one day and said, 'Your hair's too thick, and you need a complete makeover.' So she put chemical relaxer in it - and a lot of her hair fell out.

Her longtime stylist Andre Walker admits Winfrey does semi-relax her hair for the camera and magazine covers, but keeps the chemicals to a minimal level.

But as Winfrey is such an icon - and a stylish one at that - will this wavy/au naturel style catch on? We haven't seen really natural, non-blown out or set hair since the 1960s and '70s! In any case, this is sure to sell a lot of issues.