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Why Did Elvis Presley Choose to Dye His Blonde Hair Black?

Key Points:

  • Elvis Presley was born a natural blonde but began dyeing his hair black in his late teens and early adulthood.
  • The jet-black hair color accentuated his striking blue eyes and created an edgy, rebellious image that appealed to fans.
  • Speculation suggests Elvis dyed his hair as a tribute to his late mother or to enhance his photogenic appeal on-screen.

Elvis Presley’s signature jet-black hair was as iconic as his voice, becoming a defining part of the rock and roll legend’s image. The perfectly coiffed pompadour, always a deep shade of black, set the standard for men’s hairstyles and contributed to Elvis’s rebellious, bad-boy persona. But the King of Rock and Roll was born a natural blonde, begging the question: why did he choose to dye his hair black?

According to CheatSheet, born in Tupelo, Mississippi, in 1935, Elvis Presley was a blonde-haired baby. As he entered his teens, his hair naturally darkened to a sandy brown or light brown shade. However, during his late teens and early adulthood, Elvis began regularly dyeing his hair jet-black, even resorting to using black shoe polish on occasion.

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The Iconic Jet-Black Look of Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley - Can't Help Falling In Love
Elvis Presley – Can’t Help Falling In Love

There are several theories as to why Elvis chose to embrace the jet-black hair color that became his signature look. Some fans believe it was a tribute to his beloved mother, Gladys, who had dark hair and passed away when Elvis was young. Others speculate that the striking contrast between his raven locks and icy blue eyes created a photogenic and memorable look that enhanced his on-screen appeal.

Additionally, the edgy, bad-boy image cultivated by his jet-black hair perfectly complemented the rebellious spirit of rock and roll music, making Elvis an instant hit with his adoring female fans.

Elvis was meticulous about his appearance and worked closely with hairstylist Larry Geller to achieve his iconic look. Geller created custom hair treatment and dye mixes for the King, regularly massaged his scalp to promote healthy growth, and experimented with various hairsprays to achieve the perfect hold.

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Elvis’s attention to detail extended to his wife, Priscilla, as well. He insisted that she dye her hair jet-black and tease it into a beehive hairstyle to accentuate her blue eyes, creating a matching look for the couple on their wedding day.

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