20 Celebs That Dyed Their Hair For A Role

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Suddenly feeling the urge to dye my hair!

Changing your hair can be a huge commitment, and deciding to cut, bleach, or dye your hair is an even bigger commitment.

But for actors, it’s almost a part of the job to have a new hairstyle with every role they choose. Sometimes those new do’s can include making the biggest (sometimes most damaging) changes to your hair, but they are committed nevertheless.

So here are 20 actors that went above and beyond for their role and dyed their hair colors that are completely different from their natural hair:


For her role as Cat Valentine on the four seasons of Victorious, Ariana Grande dyed her hair bright red every other week.

Micah Smith / Getty Images

Due to the damage it caused her hair, she switched to red wigs for her time on Sam and Cat. Grande was also dyeing her hair back and forth since around that time, she started growing her music career and felt like the red hair was meant for her character, and her brown hair would be for her music. 

In real life, Ariana Grande actually has dark brown hair.


For his role as Archie Andrews on Riverdale, KJ Apa had his hair dyed burnt orange/red.

The CW Network / Courtesy Everett Collection

When Apa first dyed his hair for the show, he said the transition was so unrecognizable to him. 

“Probably the main thing I was really nervous about was seeing what I would look like with red hair and eyebrows,” he shared with Teen Vogue. “It was definitely really weird to see, but now I can’t really remember what it was like before. I heard that only 2% of the population of the world has red hair, so I’m feeling pretty good right now.”

This is what he looks like with his natural brunette hair color

Sam Tabone / WireImage / Getty Images


Originally, Sophie Turner dyed her hair gingery-orange for her character Sansa Stark on Game of Thrones before she switched to wearing wigs.

Helen Sloan/HBO/ Courtesy of Everett Collection

In order to play her character on the show, Turner had to dye her hair every week

Her hair got so bad at one point that she was no longer able to keep dyeing it from blonde to red and vice versa. In an interview with Glamour, Turner spoke about her biggest hair emergency, and it actually had to do with her hair while on the show. 

“A few years ago, I was trying to go back from red to blonde, and it destroyed my hair to the point that I had to use a wig for Game of Thrones,” she explained. “They wouldn’t let me dye it back red, or my hair would’ve fallen out.”

This is what she looks like with her natural blonde hair color.

Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images

Despite the constant dyeing, Turner did take measures like using certain hair masks to keep her hair as healthy as possible. In 2018, she even clarified that her damage wasn’t from the red dye from Game of Thrones, but it was actually a different dye from when she tried to go back to blonde.

“Just wanting to clarify on this that it wasn’t my red dye that I used for Game of Thrones that ruined my hair,” she wrote in a now-deleted tweet. “It was for another job that I had my hair dyed blonde for.”


For the Hunger Games trilogy, Jennifer Lawrence dyed her hair brown/black to really capture her character, Katniss Everdeen.

Lions Gate / Everett Collection

Linda Flowers, the head hair designer for The Hunger Games, wanted to find the perfect shade of brown for Lawrence to rock during the movies, but instead of dyeing her hair, they rented hair in different shades to find the right one. 

“‘I rented $30,000 of hair of all different shades of brown, from light brown to brown with a little bit of red in it,” she explained to BellaSugar. “It made Jennifer comfortable that we weren’t going to experiment with her color.”

Here she is sporting her natural hair color, which is blonde.

Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images

After Catching Fire, Lawrence cut her hair into a pixie cut in order to get rid of all the build-up from constantly dyeing her hair dark. 

“She wanted to go back to blonde for award season, but her hair had so much color build-up that she decided to cut it off to her shoulders,” Flowers told Cosmopolitan. “I tried to lift the brown pigments out of her hair twice with a base-breaking formula, which helped, but then Jennifer went to her personal colorist and spent eight hours there, bleaching it. The entire process really damaged her hair, so that’s when she went full pixie to get her hair back to a healthy state.”


For her character Daenerys Targaryen in Game of Thrones, Emilia Clarke had to wear a completely different hair color than her natural one.


Clarke usually wore a platinum blonde wig for her character, but during the last season, she decided to go the extra mile and bleach her hair platinum blonde. 

“I got to a point where I said I just want to look in the mirror and see something different,” she said in an interview with Vanity Fair. “So I was just like, ‘Fuck it, it’s the last season. I’m going to dye my hair blonde.'”

Clarke’s hair IRL is actually brunette.

Samir Hussein / Samir Hussein / WireImage / Getty Images

The effects of bleaching your hair can sometimes cause damage, and that’s exactly what Clarke experienced. She ended up having to cut it short in 2018 to recover from the damage. 

“It is quite short because my hair was, like, dying! So I’ve cut it a little bit shorter. It’s almost the shortest it’s been. I’m honestly trying to grow out the blonde because it’s just killed my hair, and I miss having nice hair,” she said. “I do like the length, but I wish my hair was longer. I do bloody love long hair, but then I’m always dreaming of cutting it all off and having a pixie cut, but I don’t know that my face could take it.”


For the first season of 13 Reasons Why, Miles Heizer had his hair completely bleached.

His natural hair color is dark brown/brunette.

Jeff Kravitz / FilmMagic / Getty Images

Heizer’s color change actually played into the show as well. In Season 2, Alex grew out his hair to cover the scar from his attempted suicide. Department head hairstylist Carla Farmer revealed that this new brunette hair is a wig she created for Heizer’s role during Season 2. “He wore a wig the entire season,” Farmer explains. “The only time he didn’t was at Hannah’s wake and the dance. That was Miles’ real hair cut short at the end of the season.”


Cole Sprouse has rocked several hair colors throughout his career, but currently, he’s most known for sporting his dark hair on Riverdale as Jughead.

Dean Buscher/The CW Network / courtesy Everett Collection

After taking a hiatus from acting and graduating from NYU, Sprouse announced his return to acting in 2016, when he tweeted an image with his newly dyed hair for his role as Jughead. 

Longtime Sprouse fans will know that Cole’s natural hair color is sandy blonde.

Mark Sullivan / WireImage / Getty Images

Same as his twin brother, Dylan, Cole has been rocking blonde hair since birth! Since his start on Riverdale, he has had darker hair most of the time, excluding the rare occasions when he goes back to his roots. 


Evan Peters is well known for dyeing his hair all sorts of colors, especially for his roles on American Horror Story.

TCD/Prod.DB / Alamy Stock Photo

Peters has dyed his hair several colors on the show, including blonde, red, and even blue. 

When talking to Entertainment Weekly about his blue hair in AHS: Cult, he mentioned that it was, “Originally my idea [to have blue hair]. I remember seeing this movie called SLC Punk, and I always associated Detroit with this punk-rock-type scene. There was something kind of scary but alluring and kind of underground about blue hair. I was also looking around me and seeing so many people with blue hair — I was shocked,” he continued. “I was like, this is some kind of sign, and I just have to do it. Everybody has brown hair, blonde hair, and red hair. So it was kind of like, destroy what’s already kind of going on everywhere — what’s normal — and let’s create something new. That was the logic behind it.”

While we’ve seen him rock several different colors, his natural hair color is brunette.


Everyone knows Ashley Tisdale as the blonde beauty she portrayed in Suite Life of Zack and Cody and the High School Musical franchise, but she actually dyed her hair for both roles.

Fred Hayes / Disney Channel / Courtesy: Everett Collection

“My natural hair is dark, so I do tend to like it more dark just because it’s easier to manage,” she told Us Weekly. “I like being blonde, too.” 

This is what she looks like with her natural brunette hair color.

Jean-paul Aussenard / Phillip Faraone / Getty Images

Over the years, Tisdale has experimented with many colors, but she tends to keep it on the darker side, closer to her natural color. 


One of Debby Ryan’s most famous roles was playing Jessie on Disney Channel’s Jessie, where she dyed her hair orange.

Ron Tom / Disney Channel / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Ryan had her hair dyed for each season of the show, excluding short breaks, where she would experiment and dye her hair other colors like platinum blonde in between filming. 

Back in 2014, when she went platinum, she spoke with Teen Vogue about the transition and said, “If we’re being honest, I’m on a break from filming Jessie right now. And I’m actually a natural blonde, so keeping red hair is a lot of maintenance.”

This is what she looks like with her natural blonde hair color

Jeff Kravitz / Getty Images for MTV/ViacomCBS / Getty Images

While she still has fun switching her look up every now and then, Ryan mostly rocks her natural blonde look. 


For Ross’s role on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, he had to dye his hair dark brown to get into character.

Diyah Pera / Netflix / courtesy Everett Collection

When talking about his drastic transition from blonde to brunette, Lynch spoke to Elle and said, “It is really interesting to change your hair color after being blonde your entire life. Every time I looked in the mirror, I’d be like, ‘Whoa.’ It shocks you. Because my [hair] was so light, they had to do a copper dye first and then do brunette dye so that it wouldn’t bleed through. I’m pretty much used to it now. I’ll probably go back to blonde eventually. But so far, I like that Harvey’s brunette.”

His actual hair color is blonde, which he’s also worn for other roles such as Austin on Disney Channel’s Austin and Ally.

Axelle / FilmMagic / Getty Images

Now that his time playing Harvey is officially over, Lynch has kept his word and has returned to being a blonde full time again. 


Josh Hutcherson is most known for his role as blonde-haired Peeta in The Hunger Games series.

Murray Close/Lionsgate/Courtesy Everett Collection

While filming The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Hutcherson had to bleach his hair, and it took three colorists to get the shade just right. 

But his natural hair color is actually brunette.

Jamie Mccarthy / Getty Images

Once the movies ended, he admitted that dyeing his hair would be the one thing he didn’t miss. 

“I’m excited to shed the blonde hair!” he said in an interview on ABC. “That’s the thing that I was like, ‘Get out of here!’ Having to do touch-ups all the time and get my hair redyed and bleached was not my thing at all.”


Leighton Meester dyed her hair brunette for Gossip Girl because Blake Lively was already their “blonde girl.”

James Devaney / WireImage / Getty Images

In 2012, Josh Schwartz, the show’s co-creator, spoke with the Hollywood Reporter and told them about Leighton’s audition process. 

“Leighton was a blonde when she came in to read, but Blake was the blonde, so we asked her to color her hair,” he explained. “A risky move on her part in the middle of pilot season, but she did a sink-rinse dye job to audition as a brunette.”

This is what she looks like with her natural blonde hair color.

Gregg Deguire / FilmMagic / Getty Images

Meester currently rocks her brunette look but goes back and forth between colors now and then. 


Tom Felton is most known for his role as Draco in the Harry Potter franchise, where he has platinum blonde hair.

Warner Bros /Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett Collection

Felton apparently had to dye his hair platinum blonde every 10 days to capture the essence of the character he played.

During a 2008 press conference, he said, “The worst thing was dying my hair blonde. It built some superhuman resistance, but it seems to have survived.”

However, his hair in real life is a much different color and leans more on the darker side.

David M. Benett / Dave Benett / Getty Images for Ned’s Club

Once the movies were over, Felton was relieved to be able to stop dyeing his hair as well as finally being able to go into the sun. 

“I didn’t realize that when you dye your hair, you have to continually do it every single week. I thought you just dyed it, and it stayed one color,” he said in an interview on The Queen Latifah Show. “So it was a pleasant relief to be allowed back in the sun as well. The was something I had to stay out of from getting any tan.”


You might remember James Marsters rocking platinum blonde hair for his role as Spike on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but his natural hair color is much different than what we’re used to.

20th Century Fox Film Corp. All rights reserved. Courtesy Everett Collection

Apparently, Marsters had to bleach his roots every eight days for six years during his time on the show. 

“They told me repeatedly my hair would fall out, or rather they were not sure I would have hair by the end. Right on the bottle of bleach they used it said, ‘Only do this every six weeks. Not safe to use more often.’ And we did it every eight days because a vampire is dead, so your hair doesn’t grow so you can’t have roots,” Marsters said when talking about his hair experience on the show. “The makeup department was really particular: There can never be roots in your hair. So for seven years, we did it every episode. I agreed to bleaching when I thought I was going to die in five episodes. I don’t know if I would have agreed to it for seven years.”

Marsters’ natural hair color is actually dark brown/brunette.

Jim Bennett / Getty Images for Museum of Pop C


Tom Hiddleston is most known for playing Loki in the MCU, where he has black hair, but this color is much different than his natural color.

Zade Rosenthal/Paramount Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

“In Thor, that was my own hair. I grew it out. But I have naturally curly, blonde hair, so I’ll never look like that. By the time I got to The Avengers, I had come off two other films, which required me to have it very short,” Hiddleston said in an interview with Parade. “So I dyed it again, and it was long enough to use a part of my hairline, but the rest of it was a wig. It was kind of like extensions, really, so I couldn’t have rocked it offscreen.”

Tom Hiddleston’s hair is naturally much blonder than what he’s known for onscreen.

Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images

“My hair is blonder, naturally, and curly,” he said. “I generally tend to look like a golden retriever.” 


For Jared Leto’s role in Suicide Squad, where he played The Joker, he went through a complete transformation.

A.F. ARCHIVE / AF archive / Alamy Stock Photo/ Warner Bros

To completely transform into The Joker, Leto dyed his hair platinum blonde before going to the bright green color we saw in the movie. He also shaved his beard off and bleached his eyebrows. 

This is what he looks like with his natural brunette hair color.

Nicholas Hunt / Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival

Leto has dyed his hair many times throughout the years, but dark brown is where it all began. 


Sofia Vergara is widely known for her role on Modern Family, where she sports long brown hair, but she actually dyed it this color.

Randy Holmes / ABC / Courtesy: Everett Collection

When talking about dyeing her hair, Vergara stated that she only dyed it because, “It didn’t match the Hollywood stereotype for a Latina woman.” She also added that in her opinion, she thinks she should always have dark hair. 

Believe it or not, Sofia Vergara’s natural hair color is blonde.

Jim Smeal / Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Every now and then, Vergara will go back to her roots and rock her blonde hair, but she also goes to her famous brunette from time to time. 


Zooey Deschanel is mainly known for rocking her brunette hair like on New Girl, but it’s actually not her natural hair color.

Isabella Vosmikova / Fox / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Deschanel is widely known for her brunette hair, but she also has a wide number of roles where she is blonde, like her role in Elf

This is what she looks like with her natural blonde hair color.

Jon Kopaloff / Getty Images

When talking about having to dye her hair blonde again for a role, Deschanel stated, “When I had blonde hair, I would wake up and be like, shocked. Your hair is part of your identity, and I’ve always felt like a brunette with bangs.”


And finally, Dakota Johnson is well known for rocking her brunette hair like her character Anastasia in the Fifty Shades trilogy, but it’s much different than her natural color.

Chuck Zlotnick/Focus Features / courtesy Everett Collection

Fifty Shades of Grey started filming in 2013, and around that time, Johnson dyed her hair brunette to get into her iconic character. 

While she’s most known for her brunette hair, Dakota Johnson is a natural blonde.

Riccardo Savi / WireImage / Getty Images

As soon as filming ended for the last Fifty Shades movie, Johnson immediately started dyeing her hair lighter but reversed to dark due to a mishap. 

“I dyed my hair immediately. It’s something that I do; it’s very bizarre. Any time something weird happens in my life, I will dye my hair. It’s like such a teenage thing to do,” she said. “It was such a disaster it was kind of like an orange situation.”

Now, Johnson tends to have her hair darker. 

Did any of these natural hair color reveals surprise you? Or did you already know these beauty secrets? Let me know in the comments below!

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