Jasmine Mathews on Her Role in ‘The Tomorrow War,’ and Why Her Hair Is a Symbol of Self-Love

Texture Diaries is a space for Black people across industries to reflect on their journeys to self-love, and how accepting their hair, in all its glory, played a pivotal role in this process. Each week, they share their favorite hair rituals, products, and the biggest lessons they’ve learned when it comes to affirming their beauty and owning their unique hair texture.

In The Tomorrow War, a sci-fi action film that premiered on Amazon last week, Jasmine Mathews plays Lieutenant Hart, who in her words is “a bad ass, vulnerable yet powerful soldier from the future who is trying to help prevent the extinction of humanity.” For Mathews, whose previous credits were all in TV, her film debut means “all those years of dreaming, hard work and sacrifice are truly beginning to pay off.”

“The vinyl sound just hits the soul differently. You can Anita Baker me any day. #FollowYourJoy.”

Mathews remembers wanting to pursue acting from the age of two, when she started playing dress up and trying on different characters. (Naturally, as a fellow Houston native, “one of my favorite people to play was Beyoncé,” she remembers.) “So the challenge for me wasn’t figuring out what I wanted to do with my life, because I’ve always known,” Mathews says. “It was not allowing other people to project their opinions and fears onto my dreams and pull me away from my destiny.”

Mathews’s love of shapeshifting extends beyond her passion for acting and into her daily hair looks, which range from fierce afros with face-framing twists to one sleek, waist-grazing braid. Mathews sees her hair as a physical symbol of her “self-love journey,” she says. Mathews got her first perm at the age of six. “I was hooked the moment I saw the reveal,” she remembers. “I quickly grew to understand why the women in the salon called it the ‘creamy crack’,” she says with a laugh. Attending a predominantly white private school, Mathews adds that she was “so scared of my hair returning back to its natural state because to me it meant that I wouldn’t be as accepted or as beautiful.”

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