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Anime hair colors and type


Well-known member
Mar 26, 2017
I had noticed after some time that anime hair might have some underlying meanings on them. Then I searched on duck duck go (alternative google) and did found some websites making some claims. But then I've noticed that the claims of meaning did have things to do with personality and it did have consequences over many typologies. So I basically went to lists of colored hair characters (except black and dark brown, these are the "normal" ones), did some search on personality-database (website where people vote types of fictional characters and famous people), and listed their types (mostly according to votes - there were a few that I've changed a bit because I disagreed). I wasn't much rigorous - I didn't made an archive to be quicker. But for those who might want to try themselves to "replicate" or to try to find another patterns, my counts were heavily based on ranker.com (and personality-database for the types), but not entirely. I did MBTI, core Enneagram and SLOAN, and from them I do use a "foreign to personality" typology to assist interpretations - this foreign typology is the X Types diary that at least for this year lies on the most deep sub-forum of typology central and invisible for many people reading thus, but which is the most handy typology to catch meanings, so Im putting the relationships with it on spoilers. For my surprise, I did found some meaningful relationships, which is fascinating taking into account that we have many different authors, everyone with their own characters and styles, yet they had settled some clear patterns that carries deep meanings on them - almost on archetypal forms. So, yeah, some anime hair colours are not meaningless or random, they have something to do with the character's personality and by consequence they influence type. So here we go, from most meaningful to least meaningful:

1 - Red hair - About 60-70% meaningful

"About 60-70% meaningful" means that the odds of you to find the main pattern on a red hair character is about 60-70%, which means that the odds of their own hair to have the main meaning related to this hair colour is of 60-70%. I do consider meaningful if a type occurrence is higher than random (I also consider a margin or error too, so its somewhat higher than random).

"Passionate, seductive, feisty, enthusiastic, adventurous, dynamic, primal, hot-headed, aggressive, opinionated

For red-headed characters, the western “hot-head” stereotype is true. Tsundere alert: their emotions are explosive! Strangely, male protagonists with red hair are often calm, humble, and disciplined fighters." (https://sotaku.com/anime-hair-colors-mean-one-personality-guide/)

From 26 characters that I bothered listing, 11 of them are enneagram 7. Enneagram 9 comes as meaningful as well, with 6 characters. The 3rd place is no longer meaningful (its on the same range as "random"). On MBTI, 14/26 were EXXP, with ESTP (6), ENTP (5), ENFJ (4) being the meaningful types. On SLOAN, SLUEN (6/23) and SCUEI (5/23) are the most meaningful.

Grasping these altogether, if a character has red hair there is something like 60-70% of chances that this character is centred on the type related of being impulsive, reckless and courageous (although the plot must give an opportunity for them to manifest/show that), more prone to pursue pleasure and not much prone to avoid pain. These key components have a rich family of correlated stuff to them (such as being energetic, but adventurous, spontaneous - I think energetic is the deep meaning, red hair might relate to fire which implies being energetic), a good bunch of them listed on sotaku.com and some websites well (except the part of disciplined – and I haven’t checked the calm, humble male part).

X Types

2 - White & silver hair - 50-70% meaningful

"Pure, ethereal, magical, serene, lucid, mature, humble, indifferent, narcissistic, immoral

A strange, inhuman essence surrounds white-haired characters. Their purity can be unnatural and over-sanitized. These characters are usually strong-willed, skillful, and dignified. If a woman, it is common that she is either magical or of the spiritual realm. If the character is a guy, he usually has a broken moral compass, and is an anti-hero–on a good day. If he is a bishonen, odds are he is bisexual/homosexual. Egotism is common, and if inflicted with an injury (however minor–especially to the face) these characters will go berserk.

The combination of white hair and tan skin can indicate middle-eastern/foreign ancestry. In this case, the above description does not apply."

How you count white hair meaningful is complicated because actually white hair is related to a family of 3-4 different possible meanings. White hair is by far the most complex in terms of meaning. But before that, let me introduce the typology "data" first.

From 30 characters, exactly half of them are a IXXP. Most meaningful were ISTP (5), INTP (4), INFP (4). On the enneagram, 11/30 were type 9, 6/30 were type 6. SLOAN showed up to have a quite interesting pattern, RCUAI (5/30), SCUAI (3/30), RLUEI (3/30), RLUAI (3/30), its basically RCUAI/RLUAI centered.

Basically, White Hair characters are heavily related with:

- Introversion, on both SLOAN (17/24) and MBTI (21/30).

- High Openness/intellect mainly on SLOAN (20/24) and Intuition on MBTI (19/30) (SLOAN was substantially more meaningful than MBTI for this department).

- Unstructured (21/24) and XXXP (23/30), with SLOAN being again more meaningful.

Just as reminder, Intuitives and High on XXXXI on SLOAN are rarer than their counterparts, although that is not true neither for Japan nor likely to people interested in anime. Combine this with introversion, but also combine this with a tendency to NOT have a common MBTI/Ennea, MBTI/SLOAN, likely Ennea/SLOAN combo (for example, the most common Ennea for MBTI is 5, yet INTP is meaningful for this kind of hair whereas ennea 5 is not – I did not evaluate directly this but only realized it later), and you do have the “strange, inhuman, magical, spiritual” (I would add mysterious as well) traits and related patterns to it right on their own personality. This is the basic White Hair character traits, and if you stumble on a White Hair character the chances of them to be an introvert on either SLOAN or MBTI AND XXUXI on SLOAN, is about 50% (the reverse odd – extravert AND XXOXN is near zero – I think there is one or two of them, though).

However, there are actually “sub-types” inside the White Hair character – other meanings, that, if we combine together, have a higher rate. I pretend to have a deeper look on these later, but I do have an idea of how they are. One of them is “skilled/skillful”, which sort of is the character “being badass” or skilled at something. Well, including characters who didn’t fit the earlier pattern but who are skilled, only for those which I knew at the time, did increased the percentage or meaningfulness from 50% to 60%.

There is a second pattern which is somewhat hidden on enneagram. 9 and 6 have indirect connections with “fluid personality” [this actually comes from X Types and has been adapted for those who don't know X Types diary, so X Types spoiler below has a better and deeper explanation of this] – these parts:

“We have sometimes called the Nine the crown of the Enneagram because it is at the top of the symbol and because it seems to include the whole of it. Nines can have the strength of Eights, the sense of fun and adventure of Sevens, the dutifulness of Sixes, the intellectualism of Fives, the creativity of Fours, the attractiveness of Threes, the generosity of Twos, and the idealism of Ones. However, what they generally do not have is a sense of really inhabiting themselves—a strong sense of their own identity.”

“Until they can get in touch with their own inner guidance, Sixes are like a ping-pong ball that is constantly shuttling back and forth between whatever influence is hitting the hardest in any given moment. Because of this reactivity, no matter what we say about Sixes, the opposite is often also as true. They are both strong and weak, fearful and courageous, trusting and distrusting, defenders and provokers, sweet and sour, aggressive and passive, bullies and weaklings, on the defensive and on the offensive, thinkers and doers, group people and soloists, believers and doubters, cooperative and obstructionistic, tender and mean, generous and petty—and on and on.”

Although on type 6 it is not really exactly fluid personality, people seems to interpret as so. This fluidity/flexibility pattern is actually inside XXXP & XXUAX (indirectly on X Types but for later posts on there, this is the code of the Flexible type which both Passive and Team Player are considered sub-versions of it), but there are two times where I recall the characters fluidity being on their “power” (a secondary villain from Naruto and Fushi from “To Your Eternity”). Including these increase the meaningful percentage to 70% (if I dive deeper on this as I might do later, at best gets to 80%).

Well, beyond these, there is the Marie syndrome, which is the part which the character pass through a phase of strong suffering, however I find this to be redundant with the main pattern (but exists as well). The part “If the character is a guy, he usually has a broken moral compass, and is an anti-hero–on a good day. (…) Egotism is common” is wrong and doesn’t work, the character that are this way are usually skilled as well and the connection with white hair and them comes from the skillful part, not moral compass or egotism. The “pure” part is similar, although a higher polarity on “good vs bad” is a possibility. Humble and Narcissistic is real, yet this is already too long and it comes from the foreign typology, so I will explain it on the spoiler below.

X Types

3 – Yellow/Blonde hair – 40-50% meaningful

Yellow hair is more complex than Red but simpler than White.

“Confident, happy, romantic, artful, whimsical, Naïve, ditzy, impish, manipulative, callous, stubborn

Although not absolute, blondes loosely fall into three camps:

1.) Dumb blonde: They may also lack maturity, and have selfish attitudes.

2.) Troublemaker: Unwittingly attracts chaos. They have street-smarts, charm, and plenty of tricks.

3.) Prince: This protagonist is rare, and demonstrates the western “prince charming” archetype. This hero/heroine is chivalrous, humble, and pure.

Blonde may be an assigned to indicate a character has foreign ancestry. Usually European/American.”

For those who did read X Types, skip directly to the spoiler, where the explanation is more meaningful (50% vs 40%) and deep.

Typology speaking, on MBTI only ENFP was relevant (4/30), even though ENTP comes on second place, so Ne-dom (7/30) is the most meaningful pattern. I took a while to figure why, but I think the most likely reason is because the most likely type to get out from Europe/US/Canada and go to Japan is a Ne-dom from all 8 Jungian Types, which can skew the perception of what japanese believes a foreign personality is (even though Japan is one of the countries with the most ENFPs/ENTPs). Some traits (like artful) from Ne-dom (troublemaker for this context is one of them).

On Enneagram and SLOAN, story looks different. Most common enneagram is 6 (6/30) and 1 (6/30). Meaningful SLOAN were RCOAN (4/30), SLUEI (3/30), RLOAI (3/30). Well, this figure is too complex and I wanna make this shorter, so I will explain that the conclusion from this is that the combinations between SLOAN/Enneagram/MBTI are usually the uncommon combos as well, except that here we don’t have any specific trends on each “dimension/factor” separately. This makes the yellow hair ‘somewhat unusual’, or “someone special”. Both Ne-dom and this pattern reach a count of 40%. Yellow hair might be related with social status as well, which can up the count although I don’t know to which extent.

X types

4 – Others

The other hair colors I did search doesn’t really have any strong meaningful pattern and are more likely to be assigned at random rather than with any specific meaning on personality (pink is meaningful, but not on personality, but rather on gender). So here are they raw:

Orange: I didn’t bother looking for orange because it should be very similar to red.

Pink: Vast majority of pink are female characters and is related to acting stereotypically female for female characters. For males (the very few), pink works with the same meaning of the Red Hair color. Most pink characters are feelers by a good margin – but I believe that comes from the “female stereotype”. ISFP (5/21), E7 (6/21), E2 (5/21) were meaningful, which ISFP and E2 are from the female stereotypes I believe, and type 7 disappears from the list if we take the few males characters out. There is no SLOAN pattern for this hair type.

Blue: INFP (5/23), 4 (5/24), RCOAI (3/18), with RCOAI being the least relevant and close to irrelevant. Some blue descriptions are not totally out of synch with this, but they are not much synch either, and if I were to put a rate of meaningfulness it would be 20-30%, which means that most characters who have a blue hair were assigned to that at random.

Green: INFJ (3/20), E6 (5/20), E7 (5/20), not enough characters with a SLOAN for any SLOAN type to show up. Descriptions of green are cool and all, it would be amazing if they work. But they don’t, there are not much characters with this hair color (green is bizarre, but darker green / British green can look good) and neither this forms any meaningful pattern (INFJ for example is just 1 character above the random zone). So Green is either meaningless or a very weak meaning, with majority or vast majority of characters being assigned this hair color at random without any special meaning.

X Types:

@RadicalDoubt , @muddy120 , @tehb
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