Classic Hollywood #68 – Jayne Mansfield As A Brunette

So What Did Jayne Mansfield Look Like As Brunette?

Along with Marilyn Monroe, Jean Harlow and Brigitte Bardot, Jayne Mansfield (1933-1967) is one of the Hollywood stars who usually has the word “blonde” inserted before the word bombshell.

Mansfield’s hair was dyed blonde for the majority of her film career, which may leave you wondering what did she look like with dark hair?

Here is the answer.

Jayne dyed her hair dark for her role in the 1960 film The Challenge (re-titled in the U.S as It Takes A Thief.)

While the photo above is not Jayne Mansfield’s natural hair color, it is a startling contrast to the thousands of published photos of her as a blonde.

In the early 1950s Jayne studied acting at Southern Methodist University. She recalled in a1957 interview, “I was a brunette then.  And covered up. Men whistled at me. But that’s all. I decided my body was an asset and I’d use it.”

When Jayne received the offer to be in The Challenge in October 1959 she said, “A dream has come true. That dream is to try and put the serious side of me across. This film is a real challenge. It’s even called The Challenge'”

No the greatest quote from a woman who could speak multiple languages, play the violin well and had a very high IQ.

Later that year Jayne made The Loves of Hercules with husband Mickey Hargitay and her hair color varied from blonde to brunette to redhead playing multiple roles. Neither film received good reviews and didn’t do well at the box office.

In 1961 Jayne told Atlanta Constitution newspaper writer Actor Cordell that she “really wanted to play more serious parts. Being a glamor girl is all right – but limiting.” As part of her effort to gain more serious parts Jayne was going to “let her hair grow out to her natural dark brown color and wear less revealing clothes.”

If Jayne proceeded with that plan, her natural hair was carefully concealed by wigs for the remainder of her life. The less revealing clothes part didn’t necessarily apply to her films.. 1963 saw Jayne doing what was then considered a scandalous nude scene in Promises…..Promises!

Unfortunately the serious roles Jayne craved never did materialize.

Jayne Mansfield died on June 29, 1967 at the age of 34 in a car crash on Highway 90, thirty miles outside New Orleans.

2 thoughts on “Classic Hollywood #68 – Jayne Mansfield As A Brunette

  1. Jim

    Vera Jane Palmer, we knew her as Jayne Mansfield, was her own woman. But so was Marilyn Monroe and all other actresses. But Jayne Mansfield was a brunette as was Marilyn Monroe. But Jayne, you won’t believe this, loved pink. She loved pink so much that her mansion would be called the Pink Palace; she always had her pubic hair colored pink and cut/trimmed to the shape of a heart. Nearly every room in her home was pink. The bathrooms that had bathtubs were pink and each tub was in the shape of a heart. The pool in her backyard was quite large and also in the shape of a heart. Jayne was no Marilyn but on the other hand Marilyn was no Jayne. I wonder if they knew each enough where Jayne would have been at Marilyn’s funeral.


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