Say what Now? In a new episode of her web series, “Tia Mowry’s Quick Fix,” Tia Mowry-Hardrict said she and sister Tamera Mowry-Housley often felt frustrated while negotiating their “Sister, Sister” salaries.
Tia Mowry-Hardrict is opening up about the adversity she faced as a biracial child star.
In PEOPLE’s exclusive first look at the new episode of Tia Mowry’s Quick Fix web series, provided by Kin, the actress, 42, explains some of the differences she and her twin sister Tamera Mowry-Housley noticed as children between them and their “counterparts that weren’t of diversity.”
“It was very evident to me when I would walk on sets and see how certain stars or actors would be treated who weren’t of ethnicity — better dressing room, better trailer,” Mowry-Hardrict recalls. “Now I’m like, more aware what that was, which is a budget, but back then I didn’t know what a budget was. It was so clear how you would see one show that didn’t have a diverse cast that just had a bigger budget so everything just seemed bigger and better. But when it came to my projects and what I was doing, you actually really visually saw the less-than.”
The mother of two believes that discrepancy also pertained to pay on Sister, Sister.
“I remember once the show became a hit, it’s very normal for you to ask for a raise. That’s what happens, right? People get raises,” she says. “But it was always so hard for my sister and I to get what we felt like we deserved and our paycheck never equaled our counterparts’ that weren’t of diversity,” she claims, “and that was frustrating. Very, very frustrating.”
She praised the beloved ’90s sitcom, though, for advocating for her and her sister to wear their natural, curly hair on screen, adding that Sister, Sister and her current Netflix show Family Reunion have been the only two projects to give her that encouragement.
“When I was doing Sister, Sister, I had curly hair and what was interesting was once my sister and I got older and we wanted to be viewed as ‘sexy,’ we would straighten our hair,” Mowry-Hardrict shares. “I went on to do so many other television shows and I would always wear my hair straight because I was insecure about my curly hair. These insecurities came because I didn’t see these images, meaning women with curly hair and their natural hair, being portrayed as beautiful.”
There would been no ‘Sister, Sister’ without Tia and Tamera.