Frisby before her makeunder. Before you criticize, please bear in mind that this woman is 48 years old.
Just so we're all clear, Mizzou journalism professor Cyndi Frisby
does not actually teach classes in a little black dress. She wears regular work clothes. So it was kind of unfair for Oprah
to ask on yesterday's Oprah Winfrey Show
, "Should she be wearing that to lead our children in the future?"
Nonetheless, Frisby submitted to an on-air "makeunder" at the hands of the Queen of All Media and her fashion minion, Carson Kressley (of Queer Eye
fame). Kressley took away Frisby's hair extensions and acrylic nails and dressed her in a knee-length pencil skirt, flowy blouse and jacket.
Frisby told the Columbia Daily Tribune
she was mostly pleased with the transformation, but the hair extensions are "going back in today."
Frisby on the Oprah set, after her makeunder. A great look for the classroom, not so much for going out.
A former student who now works for Oprah recommended that Frisby make an appearance. Her makeunder was not as drastic as that of some of the other guests, like the woman whose blond hair extensions and bountiful cleavage embarrassed her children.
"African-American women have countless images like that in the media, so they wanted to do something a little different," Frisby told the Tribune
. "[Oprah] has to be careful about what she presents. She didn't want to present African-American women in a negative way."
Frisby's segment was actually so undramatic that the producers considered cutting it.
On Oprah's web page
, Frisby is quoted as saying, ""Some faculty friends would say that the reason I get some conflicts in the classroom might be because I look more like the students," she says.
But Margaret Duffy, chair of Mizzou's strategic communications department, doesn't believe Frisby needed a makeunder in the first place. "She always looks great," Duffy told the Tribune