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Dramatic music plays. An actress in a black dress, preparing to go on stage, paces and seems pensive. She turns around to face the camera. But it’s not a poignant #TimesUp Golden Globes moment. As the woman with perfect Old Hollywood waves turns around, we see... Winona Ryder.
Then the words flash onscreen: “Everyone loves a comeback.”
I felt like that moment in A Christmas Story when Ralphie uses his Ovaltine secret decoder pin and realizes it’s “a crummy commercial.” Yes, this was a commercial for L’Oréal Paris’s Elvive line of haircare products, which are meant to “help revive all forms of hair damage,” according to a press release. Winona will be featured in an ongoing campaign for the products, along with actress Aja Naomi King and singer-songwriter Camila Cabello.
Per Women’s Wear Daily, this is part of a massive rebranding for the company’s haircare line, which saw shampoo and conditioner sales sink down about 10 percent in 2016. So it’s a comeback for L’Oréal, hopes the company.
Yet I feel indignation for Winona Ryder, to be honest. I mean, good for her. Get that beauty ambassador money. But a comeback? I guess Stranger Things was a professional comeback for her, but she has been around. Marc Jacobs cast her in one of his beauty campaigns back in 2015. And honestly, she is always sort of at the periphery of my consciousness, as a very influential actress from my youth.
Besides, does Winona Ryder even have damaged hair?! A L’Oréal executive told WWD, “For Winona, we know that from TV sets to the red carpet, her hair has gone through many transformations — her hair is dry and damaged.” It has always seemed thick and shiny and luscious to me! But again, I hope Winona gets the hair of her dreams through this deal.
However, as Wendi Aarons pointed out on Twitter, this was a massive missed opportunity for L’Oréal: