“Despite what the world tells us, all Black hair is beautiful,” Rainbow Johnson (Tracee Ellis Ross) tells her daughter Diane (Marsai Martin) during the “Hair Day” episode of ABC’s “Black-ish,” which follows the teen as she weighs the options of wearing her hair “natural.”

“Black women and our hair have been at the center of economic, social, political and cultural movements in this country, [but] the story of that is not often told,” Ross told Variety Artisans (presented by HBO) in a conversation with the show’s Emmy-nominated hair department head Araxi Lindsey.

Though the team could only “scratch the surface” of the larger conversation about Black hair in just 22 minutes, the episode aligns with the fight against hair discrimination, which has recently gained ground with the Crown Act passing in seven states.

Also, Ross explains, the episode serves as yet another example of the way Lindsey and her expertise have helped the show represent the realities of Black and textured hair care during its six-season run.

“Araxi is really key on not shying away from the beauty and the power of what is unique about our hair,” Ross explains. “I think we’ve been incredibly purposeful from the beginning, to be honest about how we wear our hair.”

“The hair episode was clearly such an intimate look into what it is to be Black woman and a Black teen and dealing with your hair,” Ross adds. “So, I think we all had a lot of feelings moving into it. For me, a lot of feelings around protecting Marsai, and making sure that [she] felt really empowered to speak out about her own experience as a teen going through that journey.”

The episode was relatable for Lindsey too.

“I had a relaxer too, in junior high. I wanted one so bad. I used to wear the braids Cicely Tyson had all throughout the 70s,” Lindsey recalls. “So, I went literally from that [hairstyle] to a relaxer and it just ruined my hair. [For the episode,] I took my journey and many other young girls that I worked with and made it true and made it personal for most people to be familiar with.”

To develop the hairstyles that would illustrate Diane’s hair journey on this episode, Lindsey enlisted a few extra stylists from the Local 706 union (and a few more wigs) for the cast and the extras.

“It’s a lot of work, everybody made sure that it was an honest production and an honest story that was told. We were very careful not to overlook certain things and to be respectful, so we stuck together in sisterhood and tried to express it the best way we can.”

Lindsey’s favorite look of the episode was Diane’s finished hairdo. Explaining how she pulled it off, she says, “I had to find the perfect wig and add texture and hair to it, and cut it, shape it. I literally did a single strand twist and then pulled it out to give it the shape. She has multiple textures in her hair, so I just wanted to make sure that it was blended properly.”

Lindsey also shared secrets of how she pulled off the range of hairstyles featured in the episode, including how she created a camera-friendly version of a relaxer (the product used to chemically straighten kinky curls) using an item that can be found in the grocery aisles.

“It wasn’t relaxer,” she reveals. “It was not [Marsai’s] hair, it was a wig. And I mixed together cream hair dress and corn starch, because realistically, you can’t use relaxer on someone’s hair and do a million takes.”

It’s that kind of ingenuity and expertise in textured hair care that Ross has come to expect from Lindsey over their series-long relationship.

“I’ve been in this business for a descent amount of time now,” Ross says. “Araxi is the one of the first people within the union to do my hair that has a love of, an appreciation for and deep experience in my hair staying in its natural form, ability to braid, ability to style without using heat.”

She continues: “To be, within six seasons and still have hair that is, not only healthier than when we started, but that grows like a weed, is a testament to not only are we doing great styles and telling the truth on camera, but off-camera my hair is also thriving.”

Written by Angelique Jackson.