The 9 Main Hair Colors and Shades for Women (Photo Examples)

Woman with different hair colorsOur hair color defines us, and it’s so important and worth noting that it even shows up as a descriptor on driver’s licenses. When you’re describing someone, you probably bring up his or her hair color, right?

Hair color is truly amazing if you stop to think about how it can transform throughout one’s lifetime. Some women had white-blonde hair when they were young, but as they reach adulthood, their hair color is considerably darker. Other when are born with dark hair and have dark hair their whole life.

Are you the only redhead in a family of brunettes? Like other traits, genetics play a significant role in women’s hair colors and you can’t always predict the color of your hair, especially as you age. While some women get gray or white hairs, others notice that their hair continues to darken.

Now, let’s take a closer look at some of the most common hair colors in women.

Red Hair

Visit our women’s red hair photo gallery

Woman with red hair

If you have naturally red hair, you may not know it, but you’re a bit of a gem in the rough. Red hair is rare, but it’s definitely an envied hair color among other women. Did you know that women with red hair have less hair than other women of different hair colors?

Women with blonde hair have about 140,000 strands of hair while redheads have less than 100,000 strands. Since red hair strands are usually thicker, redheads look like they have a full head of hair.

While red hair is most popular in the UK and the US, there are redheads in other parts of the world like Asia and Pakistan.

Personality Traits of a Redhead

Whether you fit the stereotypes or not, redheads are usually viewed as mysterious and feisty. Women with red hair are often perceived as being more romantic, passionate, and even sexually promiscuous.

Are you a bit of a hot head, have a bad temper or are opinionated? If you have red hair, you could blame your hair color, or it could just be a coincidence.

If you were or are teased about the color of your hair, brush it off and be proud that you’re one of a kind.

Blonde Hair

Visit our women’s blonde hair gallery

Woman with blonde hair

Speculations that blondes are on the brink of extinction is nothing new as people have been speculating on the decline of blonde hair for centuries. While many theories and factors may hold up as a good argument, natural blondes aren’t going away any day soon.

While only about 2 percent of American adults are natural blondes, they have more hair on their heads than a brunette or redhead. While blondes can be spotted all over the globe, Northern Europe has the highest concentration of fair haired folks.

Although blonde hair is one of the most sought out hair colors (when dying hair), light colored hair is actually a genetic mutation which helped early inhabitants survive in low-light conditions. Other hair colors have varying shades, but a blonde can have platinum blonde (white-blonde) hair, “dirty” blonde, or even dark blonde hair.

Personality Traits of a Blonde

Just like redheads, blondes face a lot of stereotypes; some may apply to you, others may not. You’ve probably heard that “Blondes have more fun ” and there’s also the famous movie, starring Marilyn Monroe, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. (Marilyn Monroe was not a natural blonde, but her platinum blonde hair made her famous).

In general, women with blonde hair are often considered to be high maintenance. Blondes are also more likely to get a divorce. Blondes are often perceived as more feminine, naive, flighty, childlike, and intellectually inferior. There are probably a lot of smart and strong blondes that would have to disagree with those stereotypes.

Brown/Brunette Hair

Visit our women’s brunette hair photo gallery

Woman with brunette hair

Next to black, brown is one of the most common women’s hair colors. Wherever you go, in the world, you’re likely to come across many brunettes (people with brown hair). Like other hair colors, brunettes have various shades of brown. If you have brown hair, you might have what you call “mousy” brown hair, but your sibling has a dark brown hair color.

Many brunettes abandon their natural hair color when they’re younger so they can see what it’s like to live as a blonde or a redhead, but most return back to their natural roots (and all over color).

Interesting, women with brown hair are more likely to experience thinning of hair and baldness and may have a tougher time kicking nicotine habits.

Personality Traits of a Brunette

Women with brown hair are usually taken more seriously than a woman with blonde hair. Brunettes are also often perceived as more competent than fair haired women, which can open up more academic and career opportunities. Women with brown hair can also be more serious, be authority figures, and hardworking.

Remember, all of the so-called personality traits associated with women’s hair colors are stereotypes. While you may meet a brunette who is serious and is good at being authoritative, you may know another who is silly and hates being in charge.

Black Hair

Visit our gallery featuring women with black hair 

Woman with black hair

Go anywhere in the world, and you’ll notice that black hair is the most popular natural hair color. While all colors of hair have various textures, black hair is probably the most diverse, as it can be predominately kinky and curly in countries throughout Africa or stick straight and shiny in Asian countries.

While many women with black hair have darker skin tones (originating from countries throughout Latin America or Africa), it’s not uncommon to meet women with black hair and pale skin, whose lineage may be from a country like Ireland.

Personality Traits of a Woman With Black Hair

Women with black hair are usually perceived as introspective, serious, mysterious, and a little melancholic. With an interest in religion, poetry, or spirituality, a woman with black hair may also be ideal candidates for being a therapist. A woman with black hair may also be a little self-centered and also filled with self-doubt.

Gray and White Hair

See our gray hair gallery here and our white hair gallery here.

Woman with grey hair

While gray or white hair is not technically a hair color for most women until they are well into adulthood, it is a fascinating natural color change to mention. Premature graying can happen to anyone but is more likely depending on our genes and whether or not our relatives went gray in their 20’s or 30’s.

Although your genetics are one of the biggest contributing factors to your hair color and whether or not you’ll go gray (and when), stress can turn your hair gray as can lifestyle (such as not getting enough B-12).

Some women loathe their gray and white hairs while others just go ahead and embrace them. You can always try to dye over them with hair dye, but gray and white hair can be resistant to hair dye.

What are some stereotypes about gray hair? Well, for one, many people assume that women with gray hair are older than they are, but graying seems to be more accepted (and some women even dye their hair gray). Women with gray hair may receive more respect and may even be viewed as being a little more refined.


Check out our main ombré hair gallery here.

Woman with ombré hair

Ombré hair is a style where it’s a gradual shading of color from dark to light.  The color change can start close towards the roots or start further down the hair.

It should not be confused with balayage, which merely the coloring technique used, whereas ombré is the resulting style.

It’s an enormously popular style because it continues to look good while the hair grows out.


Click here for over 200 balayage color examples.

Woman getting balayage coloring technique done to hair.

If you want color gradation a little more subtle than ombré, check out the balayage color technique.


See our entire metallic hair color for women gallery here.

Example of woman with metallic silver hair coloring.
Example of woman with metallic silver hair coloring.

Changing Your Hair Color

If you’re like millions of other women, you probably get bored with your hair color, right? Maybe you’ve been a blonde or brunette your whole life and just want a little change. Today, more than 75 percent of women color (or have dyed their hair). In 1950, only about 7 percent of women colored their hair.

Changing one’s natural hair color has a long history that goes way back, before hair salons and over the counter hair dye. The Egyptians used henna to cover up grays, and the Greeks and Romans experimented with plant matter to make hair dye.

Today, if you want to change the color of your hair, there are countless options with varying costs. You can go to the drug store, buy a box of hair dye, and become a brunette, get that auburn sheen or a go a little more wild with a multi-colored, pink or purple hairdo in less than an hour.

You can also opt to visit your favorite stylist, get a color consultation, and see which shade of brown would look most natural with your features and complexion. Don’t want to pick a shade from the “natural” wheel of color? Dying your hair magenta or teal green is always an option, too.

For some women hair dying is a big step and it can be a little overwhelming and met with hesitation. If you are afraid to dye your hair but you still want a change, consider a washable or semi-permanent dye.

You can also think about highlights or lowlights. While this will not drastically change the color of your hair, it will add a little color, depth, and dimension to your overall natural color. Whatever you decide to do, when dying your hair, it’s always a good idea to seek a professional opinion and have someone dye your hair for you.

Be careful about mixing products and always make sure you read directions and do a skin sensitivity test first (just to make sure you’re not allergic to hair dye).

What Does It Mean If You Want To Dye Your Hair?

Visit our dyed hair photo gallery.

Woman dyeing hairThere are many ideas as to why women want to dye their hair and when it comes down to it, it varies from woman to woman and has a lot to do with personal preference. Are you afraid to commit? Do you lack self-esteem? Are you trying to become someone else? Maybe you just want to do something fun with your hair. All of these reasons are possible (and totally okay).

Really want to change your hair color but are afraid of what others will say? First of all, remember that a change in your hair color is not forever. Yes, once you dye your hair, there is a little bit of maintenance required to keeping (or changing) your new look, but it doesn’t have to be your forever color.

Unless your place of employment has strict rules against changing the color of your hair, there should be nothing stopping you from wanting to dye your hair (especially if you’re an adult woman).

Have a friend who thinks red hair is ugly? Does your significant other insist you dye your hair black, but you would rather go brown? Your hair is your hair, and if no one likes the choices you make in regards to the color of your hair, you don’t need that negativity in your life.

Whether you were born a blonde or brunette, you can change your hair color as many times as you wish and you can always return to your natural color whenever you’re tired of dying your hair. Love your natural color as is and never want to change the color? That’s great, too.

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