Jada Pinkett Smith is opening up about her family’s reaction to her son Jaden’s decison not to subscribe to fashion’s gender divide.
“I give Jaden props,” the actress, 46, said of her son’s sartorial risk taking on the latest episode of Red Table Talk alongside Jade, her daughter Willow and mother Adrienne Banfield Norris. In 2016, Jaden famously became the face of Louis Vuitton womenswear.
Pinkett Smith said Jaden’s style choices were especially brave with him “being a black young man –– and the son of like an über masculine hiphop star.”
As for the Independence Day star, Pinkett Smith said, “He has his feelings on that for sure. I remember Will calling me and being like, ‘Have you talked about this Jaden and him wearing a skirt?’ And I said, ‘Yeah I have. He’s pretty happy about it.’ ”
Pinkett Smith also talked about Jaden’s motivations for his style, saying that he “talked about wanting to wear skirts to give kids the freedom, to give other people the freedom to think out of the box for themselves and not feel like in doing that that they would be bullied or be attacked in some way.”
While Jaden admitted that giving other’s confidence “comes along with it,” he admitted there was a deeper motivation. “I wore the skirts to I could look fly,” he said with a laugh. “That’s why I wore the skirts, so everyone would say, ‘He’s an innovator. His head’s in a different place.’ ”
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Over the years, the 19-year-old has been known to push the envelope when it comes to outfit choices, having been photographed wearing skirts, a dress to prom and — most notably — a Batman costume to Kim Kardashian and Kanye West‘s wedding.
Pinkett Smith also spoke on the show about balancing her kid’s childhoods with their ambitious career goals, noting that the subject caused serious conflict between her and her husband. Speaking out Jaden’s breakout movie role in The Karate Kid when he was just 12, she said, “I remember being on set with Will and it was such a struggle between he and I in regards to Jaden.”
She added, “I understand why men take their sons away for like whatever kind of warrior training because it is completely, utterly unfair and unnatural for a woman to have to sit and watch anything like that for her son,” she added, referring to the intense training Jaden went through to prepare for the part.
“Will and I were in constant conflict, to the point where we were warring over Jaden,” she admitted.
After noting that the family went through a similar situation when Willow shot to fame with “Whip My Hair,’ Pinkett Smith told her children how proud she is of their work effort.
“Even in those battles that we’ve had over what’s too much, what’s too little, trying to find the balance in regards to parenting, I’ll tell you one thing about the two of y’all: y’all know how to work, you work hard, and you do it well. And I’m proud of that,” she said.