Smorgasbord Sundays: Do Redheads Have More Fun?

Anne of Green Gables Anne Shirley & Gilbert Blythe Redhead

I’m going to talk about hair. Don’t worry, it’s not about removing it or anything nasty like that. (I’ve already published that ‘scary’ post on Hallowe’en. ;))

I’m going to gush about my love for redheads and also share with you my struggle to accept my dark hair.

P.S. The redhead in the photograph is Anne Shirley (from Anne of Green Gables). Ever since I read some of the books in the series and watched the movies when I was in elementary school, I fell in love with her spunky, creative, witty, and easily provoked character. She was probably one of my first big feminist role models.

P.P.S. I’m like Gilbert Blythe staring at Anne.

Image Credit: http://officialanneofgreengables.wikia.com


For a long time, I’ve been smitten by those with flaming locks. Whenever I see someone with red hair, I’m always envious. And when it’s natural, heck, I’m awestruck! (I find it absolutely insane how some redheads get teased and called ‘Ginger’!)

Hair colour was a big deal to me when I was in high school. I always wanted red hair and asked God why he gave me dark hair instead. (I hated my dark hair back then. In very much the same way Anne Shirley felt cursed with having red hair and being called Carrots, I felt cursed with having brownish-black hair.)

So I went on a quest to achieve the perfect shade of red. First I tried dying my hair at home. Then, I took to the salon when my attempts weren’t perfect.

Although I loved Anne Shirley’s orangey-red tresses, it didn’t work with my skin tone. But I was determined to find the perfect shade of red.

Anne Shirley Anne of Avonlea Redheads Have More Fun

Here's an older Anne Shirley - still a beautiful redhead! (Image is from the same source as the one above.)

I’ve sported nearly every shade of red at some point – from a dark cherry that’s only noticeable in the sunlight to a flaming fire-engine red. (I still remember going home after getting the latter done. My dad tried to hide his laughter, but couldn’t help asking me if it was fall already. It was summer. :P)

After a lot of frustration and disappointment, I stopped dying my hair in my final year of high school because I got frustrated when I would find the perfect red, but then it would fade really quickly. (I wasn’t keen on having to go for touch-ups often. My wallet also wasn’t keen on it.)

And a peculiar thing happened.

The dark hair I previously hated and tried to change at all costs became a colour I grew to accept.

And then I grew to appreciate it.

I still haven’t dyed my hair again since.

It’s not that I have anything against dyed hair. In fact, I regularly dye my mom’s hair. I’ve become more thankful for what I was born with. :) I no longer feel the need to be a redhead. And I no longer feel like my dark hair is a curse…haha! Actually, when I stopped dying my hair, I got lots of compliments on my natural hair colour. I was surprised!

It was a huge deal to go from loathing a part of myself to actually liking a part of myself.

Even though hair colouring is such a minute part of a person that isn’t nearly as important as things like beliefs and personality, I still consider my little inner transformation to be a proud accomplishment. It’s one step in the right direction toward liking myself more and improving my self-confidence.

These days, when I want to change up my look, I try new clothes, I put on a statement necklace, and I switch my nail polish. Instead of thinking, “What’s wrong with me?” and “I want what someone else has.”, I try to play up my strengths and be proud of who I am as is.

Of course, all this doesn’t mean that I no longer drool over redheads. I still think they’re so lucky. :)

Here are just some women who I think rock red hair beautifully:

Julianne Moore Redheads Have More Fun

Julianne Moore (Image Credit)

Debra Messing Redheads Have More Fun

Debra Messing (Image Credit)

Emma Stone Redheads Have More Fun

Emma Stone (Image Credit)

Lindsay Lohan Redheads Have More Fun

Lindsay Lohan (Image Credit)

Florence Welsh Redheads Have More Fun

Florence Welsh - (Image Credit)

What have you learned to accept and love about yourself? Do you dye your hair? What’s your ideal hair colour?

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32 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Sundays: Do Redheads Have More Fun?

  1. Tegan

    OMG! I love Anne Shirley! She also had huge influence on myself . I love reading, red hair and puff sleeves because of her :) She is an amazing role model. I have also learn to accept my hair in the last year. I normally dye my hair every few months, changing my colour everytime. My favourite being red :p But in the last year i have kept it black as i dont feel the need to dye it all the time anymore. I have become obsessed with nail polish instead, lol!
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Tegan!

      Hehe, when I was in grade school and first fell in love with her, I also was really into puffed sleeves. But the blue dress she wore to the dance had SUPER puffed sleeves…haha, remember? They were bigger than her head! But, still, it was really sweet how Matthew bought it for her, and the way he went about purchasing the dress was hilarious because of his extreme shyness. (Oh, I always bawl my eyes out when ‘that thing’ happens to Matthew. I’m saying ‘that thing’ because I don’t want to spoil anything for people who haven’t watched it.)

      Every time I watch the first or second Anne of Green Gables movies, I always feel happy and uplifted. :) Gonna have to watch it again soon! Hmm…but I didn’t care for the 3rd movie, did you? I felt like they made Anne Shirley seem like a completely different person because she was so stressed out and hardly carefree anymore.

      Reply
  2. Kimberly

    I have found that I can rock red! I have been almost every hue too. Well, not Ronald McDonald or Rhianna red. The most favorite portrait of me and my husband I have gorgeous red hair.

    Before going red, I was blond, as I am currently. Almost every shade of that one too. I found it interesting that once I was a redhead no one said to me ‘Gee, you’re smart!’

    Now that I have been a blond for many years, again, I’ve been toying with the idea of going red again. But this time, I want some highlights. I’d like blond, different shade of reds and maybe some black. I no longer have to play the role of a dean’s wife so I’m going wild!

    Oh, and might I mention, I haven’t seen my natural hair color, save for root growth, since I was 17.
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Kimberly!

      Haha, yeah, it takes the right person to pull off a Ronald McDonald red. (Unfortunately, I learned this hard lesson since I had that colour at one point and looked absolutely ridiculous with it.)

      Your comment about how people didn’t mention your intelligence when you were a redhead is very interesting. I remember reading a study about how people perceive the intelligence of those with certain hair colours. The study found that men tended to think of those with brown or black hair as being smarter than those with blond or red hair. They also thought that redheads were wild. Of course these preconceptions aren’t always accurate. :)

      I think your combination of blond, red, and black sounds cool and edgy. If you do end up going with it, take photos! :)

      Reply
  3. Carmela

    What an empowering post, Mary! I wish more people in the fashion industry thought this way instead of telling the majority of women out there to starve themselves to attain a size zero. If most people learned to see what makes someone different as something special instead of using it as fodder for bullying, this world would be such a better place.

    I have a fascination with red hair myself but more because having a red tint to my naturally dark brown hair makes me look (strangely) healthier. I’ve also found that the best way for me to get the shade that flatters me the most is by using henna that’s a mix of red and brown (the color I gravitate to is more of a mahogany brown not full on red). It’s the only way I’ve been doing my hair now since it’s natural and I dont damage my hair unnecessarily plus the color fades evenly so if I don’t do it for a while it still looks okay.
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Carmela!

      Yeah, the fashion industry is a hardddd industry. If you’re not what they want, you’re out in the cold. And despite the life of a model being advertised as glamourous, I actually feel sorry for them. They have to stick their feet into too-small shoes and ‘work through the pain’, once their best features are passe, they’re dumped and agencies go onto the next, and they’re treated more like living mannequins than as actual people.

      I’ve never been a model (although I joke about being a model…in the BEFORE PHOTOS! Hahaha), but after watching America’s Next Top Model and reading books like No Lifeguard on Duty by Janice Dickinson, I’ve come to see the modelling world as something I’d consider a personal nightmare. I think I’d have a mental breakdown if I ever was a model. Still, though, the industry really intrigues me, and I’m amazed at the mental strength and resilience of models in general.

      Interesting that you use henna instead of typical hair dye. MUCH better for your hair!

      Reply
      1. Carmela

        Before photos of models are still pretty gorgeous! I mean, you have to have that awesome bone structure to begin with, right? :D And yeah, I don’t doubt how crazy that would be. Have you seen the photos of bruised feet on the runway as the fashion weeks wraps up? It was pretty heartbreaking. :( I suppose there really is a price for beauty.

        Have you tried henna? I’ve been using Lush Caca Marron for a year now and I’m so happy with it that I can’t see myself go back to chemical dyes. I love that it’s so low maintenance too. You can probably get away with 2-3 dye jobs in a year, tops! :)
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        1. Mary Post author

          Oh boy – yeah, their feet look like they’re really painful. :( Foot pains are some of the worst because every step you take, it’s ow, ow, ow, ow…

          No, I’ve never tried henna before. You should review that product on your blog! I may actually look into that, not for myself (because I don’t want to colour my hair), but for my mom. I dye her hair, and the chemicals are really strong and STINK…My mom would be fine with it if it gets the job done, and I would be happy to use something that doesn’t smell so nasty. (She’d want it to cover up white hair, though. I wonder if the pigment is strong enough to do that.)

          Reply
  4. Fingers

    I actually was born a blond and for a few years I dyed it a freaky white blond. Then 25 yrs ago I went red. And not just subtle red like the actors you have pictured here but loud bright in your face red. Some months I go more copper some months more red wine. And yes it fades very fast. But my budget includes hair dye day just like my mortgage payment! Every 28 days I dye it red. Now I am 43 and still a red head. But my natural color is now an ugly gray.
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Fingers!

      You say ‘ugly gray’, but I think that sometimes gray hair looks amazing on people. I once saw this woman who had 100% gray hair. She had a bob haircut, and I think that style plus the colour made it all look so chic!

      Reply
      1. Jacqui

        Both =) And I think the rest of my post got cut off =) I used to have a fascination with red hair as well, in fact, pretty much through all of high school my hair was red. But then I started disliking red, and despite how much I dyed my hair, there was always a red tinge. I grew out my natural hair color for 2 years before my wedding, and it was a light brown with a hint of red. Now I dye my hair dark ash brown to get rid of any hint of red! lol.
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        1. Mary Post author

          Interesting how the red stuck with you, even if that frustrated you! Haha, I had the opposite problem – I kept begging it to stay, but it faded so quickly and would often turn brassy.

          Reply
    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Marcia!

      I think I know exactly what Revlon Bright Auburn looks like – VERY PRETTY! :) Very cool how you can pull off that shade of red. Unfortunately that kind never worked for my skin tone, but it’s one of my favourite kind of reds when it comes to hair.

      Reply
  5. Emily Jurow

    I was hoping to see some pics of your previous red hair!!
    I have dark hair naturally- blackish brown, and I dyed my hair red for years!
    Probably the past 8 years or so, I’ve been dying my hair red!
    Within the past two years though, I’ve been switching between red and more of my natural color, and even black, but I’ve dyed my hair red so many times, that the red never comes out anymore! Even though it fades and looks dull- even if I dye my hair black over it, it fades right back to a red tinted brown.
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Emily!

      All my photos of the teenaged me with red hair are all at my mom’s house. :) Actually, I don’t even have too many photos of myself in general. I think it’s because usually I’m the one behind the lens instead of in front of it. Maybe I should take some photos of myself just so that when I’m 144 years old (hehe), I can look back and say, “See? That’s when I used to have teeth!” ;)

      Interesting how the red doesn’t leave you and is always there!

      One time, I dyed my hair jet black. It was during the phase when I also wore nearly all-black clothing and wore heavy black eye looks. I was mistaken for a goth a few times…and actually, that made me happy! Even to this day, I have a ‘thing’ for goths even if I never really was one.

      Reply
  6. Amber

    My natural hair is a light brow with redish tints in it. I of course wanted more red and dyed my hair a few years ago a deep red. I got so frustrated with how quickly it faded so I stopped dying my hair untill about 2 months ago. I had a serious itch for a dark brown/redish color.I am getting frustrated again at the fast fading. So soon I will be a natural red tint head :)
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Amber!

      I don’t know if I’ve ever told you, but I think your hair colour is SO DAMN GORGEOUS! It really goes with your skin tone, and I secretly always drool over your hair every time I visit your blog and see photos of you when you’ve done cool eye looks.

      Reply
  7. AngelicMariposa })I({

    OMG…Anne & Gilbert, swoon!! Since I was a kid I’ve wanted to visit P.E.I. to see well the Green gables!!! Loved her red hair and how she broke the easel over Gilbert’s head…does the furry hair really translate into personality?? Myself being a brunette feel he had it coming!! Loved this post!!

    Reply
    1. Mary Post author

      Hey AngelicMariposa!

      Several years ago, I actually got to go to Prince Edward Island. I saw the Anne of Green Gables store, but I didn’t go to the official Green Gables house. The store had lots of things like gold-rimmed teacups with Anne’s face on it and doilies…haha, so it wasn’t really my thing. But I did think it was neat how there’s a huge following. :) I just love Anne Shirley!

      Haha, yeah, Gilbert had it coming! ;)

      Reply
  8. Ashesela

    What a lovely post!!! I am very glad that you have accepted and learned to like that part of yourself. The first time I dyed my hair was red too (I loved red hair as well). Of course, I’ve dyed my hair so many colours, hehehe. That is one thing I really like about every year that passes; the older I get and the more experience I have, I learn to like myself for who I am more and more.
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    1. Mary Post author

      Hi Ashesela!

      I’m pleased that you’ve also learn to like yourself more with each passing year. It’s not something that everyone is able to do, and I think it’s really important to grow in that positive way as a person.

      Reply
  9. Sarah P

    I found your blog a couple weeks ago and I LOVE IT! So many pwetty polishes! And Gilbert is so handsome up there I decided I had to finally comment. ;)

    It’s ridiculous how much cash I’ve dropped lately on polish. :D

    Reply
    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Sarah!

      Hehe, maybe I should put photos of Gilbert on more of my posts since he’s so effective by just looking so charming. ;) Hehehe!

      If you ever want me to dissuade you from buying a polish, let me know. While it’s really fun to enable other people and feel that excitement, I know that sometimes people want to save their cash. I’m serious – if you want me to help you save money, I’m good at that.

      Reply
    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Nikki!

      It’s so awesome that you dye your blond hair red. Whenever I see a natural blond, the first thing that comes to mind is “I bet (s)he would look awesome with red hair.” Plus red dye should take better to light hair, and the red would look more vibrant!

      Reply
  10. Marta

    Well my Kindred Spirit! What can I say, I love this post!
    Anne of Green Gables was a fave of mine too… But I totally spent most of my time daydreaming about Gilbert ;) ESP in those later books ;)

    As per hair, not removal ;), I always wanted to have black hair! Buut my hubby likes Blond on me and frowns for days when I come back “dark” from the hairdressers ;) nothing worse than a grown man sulking and frowning… Lol. Hence, I’m a stripe-streaked blond :)

    Reply
    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Marta!

      I only made it through the first 3 or so books in the series, although I do also have books 4, 5, and 6, too. One day I need to read them. But I’ve seen all the movies. The second was my favourite! Anne really came into her own.

      Wow, if you dyed your hair black, you’d look completely different – gothic, I’d say! (I have a thing for goths, so I’m really biased, but it would be REALLY COOL and edgy on you! I love dramatic looks like that on others. But…I’m sure your husband is telling you now to disregard everything to I’m saying. :P)

      Reply

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