A Japanese teen says her school forced her to dye her hair black — and she’s suing

As the end of the year approaches, most teenagers are gearing up for final exams. But one Japanese student is busy suing her school because they allegedly forced her to dye her hair. We’ve heard of sexist dress codes and confusing policies that wrongfully shame young women. And while we know that many schools in Japan have strict guidelines and dress codes for students, this goes beyond a short skirt or too much makeup.

According to The New York Times, the 18-year-old is suing the government of Osaka for 2.2 million yen, or $19,300. When the student first enrolled at Kaifukan School, her mother reportedly alerted the institution to the fact that her daughter’s hair was naturally brown, not black; she knew of their policy against dyed hair. But despite the heads up, the school still didn’t think her natural hair color fit their standards.

The school allegedly forced the teen to repeatedly dye her hair black.

And according to reports, they also threatened that she’d be removed from the institution if she didn’t comply. The teen alleges in her lawsuit that the hair dye caused intense pain and irritation. In fact, she hasn’t attended school since September of last year.

“Don’t touch my hair” is a universal truth heard around the world.

Just last week, Solange reminded the Evening Standard of this when they photoshopped her hair.


Though we know there are cultural differences between the U.S. and Japan, we’re proud of the student for speaking up and taking a stand against those who mistreated her.

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