When you see a character with some wild anime hair color—like green, purple, pink, or blue—do you think it’s actually dyed, natural, or just an artistic expression? It may seem like a fact of anime life, but Sword Art Online author Reki Kawahara recently decided to get to the bottom of it on Twitter.
First off, let’s see what Kawahara himself thinks about it. As far as he’s concerned, these characters all have black, brown, or perhaps even blond hair, and the eye-popping colors are just there as an aesthetic decision on behalf of the artist. His view on this was rocked a bit, however, when a character in a manga he was reading referred to someone else as “the girl with the pink hair.”
That brings us back to the big question. Are these colors natural in the anime world, or are they intentionally dyed, which might point toward a specific type of personality? To get to the bottom of it, Kawahara posted a poll on Twitter.
Of the 22,277 responses (translations via SoraNews24):
64.6% said the character’s hair is naturally that color
6.8% said the character dyed it that way
25.7% said their hair is actually black or brown, but portrayed a certain way as an artistic expression
3% chose “other”
こういう時こそアンケート機能を使うチャンスなのでは!? と思ったので使ってみます！ 現代日本が舞台のアニメ等に出てくる、髪の毛がピンクや水色や黄緑色のキャラクターは、
— 川原礫;SAO23巻12月10日発売 (@kunori) January 4, 2020
The results are interesting, and even the “other” category has some thought put into it. One of the commenters who chose that one said, “If a quiet, reserved girl has pink hair, I take that as her natural color, but if it’s a more energetic and extroverted character, then I think there’s a chance she dyed it.” So, with that in mind, it would depend on the context of the character’s personality.
Where do you fall on this unexpected debate? Let us know your personal truth behind anime hair colors in the comments.