Skip to main contentSkip to footer
Actress Renee Zellweger attends the "Bridget Jones Baby" New York Premiere at Paris Theater on September 12, 2016 in New York City© Matthew Eisman

Renee Zellweger’s unrecognizable hair transformations over the years as star turns 55

The Bridget Jones star is back for a fourth movie

Faye James
Senior Editor
April 26, 2024
Share this:

As Renée Zellweger celebrates her 55th birthday, let's embark on a glamorous journey through her remarkable beauty transformation, marking her evolution from a fresh-faced college actress to a sophisticated Hollywood icon. 

Over the years, Renée's hair has been a dynamic canvas, showcasing her adaptability and flair for dramatic changes. Here's a closer look at the transformative styles that have not only defined her career but also left an indelible mark on the fashion world.

In 1997, at the tender age of 27, Renée stepped into the limelight with her breakthrough role in Jerry Maguire. 

Renee's frizzy locks back in 1999© Getty
Renee's frizzy locks back in 1999

At the MTV Movie Awards shortly after the film's release, she appeared with straight, medium-length hair in her natural dark blonde hue, sporting barely any makeup—a stark contrast to the glitzy transformations that would follow.

By 1999, the MTV Video Music Awards saw Renée experimenting with a bold new look: smudgy eyeliner paired with a voluminous mane of partly straight, partly crimped hair. This style moment, which she herself might admit was a misstep, was indicative of the era's pop diva trends.

The turn of the millennium brought a chic update. At the 2000 VH1/Vogue Fashion Awards, Renée debuted a blunt bob with bangs, a style that remains timeless to this day, complemented by flushed cheeks and stained pink lips.

Renee with a blunt bob and bangs© Getty
Renee with a blunt bob and bangs

The 2001 Vanity Fair Oscar Party was a standout moment in Renée's fashion history. Dressed in a vintage yellow gown with berry lips and Old Hollywood waves, she secured her place on every best-dressed list and cemented her status as a fashion icon.

In 2002, Renée embraced a dramatic chop for her role as Roxie Hart in Chicago. For the New York City premiere, she styled her hair in Marilyn Monroe-inspired curls, a nod to her character's flapper-era allure.

Renee with curls © Getty
Renee with curls

The following year, at the premiere of Down with Love in New York City, Renée returned to a straight bob without bangs. This "Life Cut" reflected her professional choice to steer clear of overtly sexy roles, favoring an image that aligned more closely with her career aspirations.

By 2003, Renée's preparation for the Bridget Jones sequel involved a significant physical transformation, adopting a 4,000-calorie-a-day diet to gain over 20 pounds. Her dedication to the role was evident in her fuller appearance at the Los Angeles premiere of Cold Mountain.

Renee as a brunette© Getty
Renee as a brunette

Her evolution continued at the 2004 Golden Globes, where she showcased a slightly longer hairstyle with darker roots, having just played Bridget Jones. This subtle ombré effect predated the trend by several years.

In 2005, Renée experimented with brunette locks for her role in Cinderella Man. Although the darker shade was a stark contrast to her usual blonde, it was short-lived. She quickly transitioned to red hair, debuting the vibrant color with bangs at the "Mr. Abbott" Awards.

Renee as a red-head
Renee as a red-head

By 2006, at the New York City premiere of Miss Potter, Renée returned to blonde, a color she has maintained since. Despite the constant changes, her features remained remarkably consistent, though subtle signs of Botox appeared.

The decade rounded off with Renée making a bold statement at the 2010 New York City premiere of My Own Love Song. Opting for a radical chop, she embraced a shorter, more modern hairstyle, symbolizing a fresh start and shedding her previous image.

Renee with super short hair© Getty
Renee with super short hair

Get the lowdown on the biggest, hottest celebrity news, features and profiles coming out of the U.S.  Sign up to our HELLO! Hollywood newsletter and get them delivered straight to your inbox.