On Red Heads: Keep Calm and Kiss a Ginger!

“In England we burnt redheads at the stake, because we thought they were witches. There are still young redheads in Britain getting ripped for having red hair. ‘Oy, Ginger!’ ” – Damian Lewis

source: people.com
source: people.com

Happy Kiss a Ginger Day! 🙂

I am a red head! BUT… Not a real one. I am a fake red head who decided to be one in my mid-30s. So I have only enjoyed the perks of being a red head woman (Ok, I am not Christina Hendricks, but still…) and have never been bullied because of that.

I have always liked red heads. My childhood idol was a red head girl that was strong enough to carry a horse. Oh, I ADORED Pippi Longstocking! 


I wanted to have red hair and freckles exactly like her! I can imagine most of you are familiar with her, but if you’re not, and if you have daughters, make them read Pippi, ladies! She’s an amazing role model for girls! She’s smart, and strong, and gets the job done! I learnt a lot from her! And, who knows, it may be my Pippi love that subconsciously made me decide to go red, too!

Damian Lewis, on the other hand, is a real red head.

What does he think about being a red head?

Does he think it affects the job he does?

Has he ever been bullied?

We’re lucky that Damian gives a lot of interviews, and interestingly enough, there is ALWAYS a question about his hair color which corroborates our guy’s view that “people find it very difficult to be indifferent to red hair.”

In an interview with the Mirror from 2002, Damian says he’s rather flattered to be seen as a red-headed sex symbol.

“There is this weird thing in England that if you fancy people who are red-haired you must be a bit kinky. I’m striking a blow for redheads. It’s funny and I’m flattered.”

source: standard.co.uk
source: standard.co.uk

In an interview with Vulture in 2011, the reporter says “I gather you’re quite beloved by the ladies in England. I asked a British friend of mine about you, and she placed you as slightly less worshipped than Hugh Laurie, but at the level of James McAvoy and Dominic Cooper. Not too shabby.” Damian’s answer:

“Well, that’s fantastic. I’ll take any of that. You know, you grow up as a redhead in England, if you get any of that kind of recognition it’s a bonus.”

In “5 minutes with Damian Lewis interview” on YouTube… yes, even in a 5 minute interview, they ask him about his hair color!

Q: “Do you enjoy being a red head? Are there any impacts on your career?”

DL: “I think It has impacts on my career daily, some I’m aware of, and some I’m not aware of. People find it hard to be indifferent to the color of me… And, so, sometimes it helps me to get jobs, and sometimes, no question, hinders me.”

Q: “Did you get teased growing up?”

DL: “I amazingly seem to have avoided it. I think probably because I was in the school teams, I was just good enough to be in the school sports teams. There was a lot of “Oy someone pick up ginger!” when I was wandering into the penalty area, but, no, nothing terrible.”

Ok, I buy Damian’s argument that people are not indifferent to red heads, but it seems to me that Damian is not indifferent to his hair color, either 🙂

First of all, in his Twitter account, Damian Lewis describes himself as an “actor, dad, red head, and ping pong champion.” So, being a red head is an essential part of his identity. It comes just after “dad.”

Secondly, he feels special about it! Once he said:

“On the set the other day, there were a lot of redheads in the room. I thought, I don’t like this, I don’t feel quite special.”



And Damian talking about his exclusive red headed club to Susanne Reid on Good Morning Britain is beyond hilarious!

“They’re now saying people are red headed when they’re not actually redheaded. I keep reading press articles that say ‘Oh and the slightly red headed Eddie and Benedict or Tom [Hiddleston]’.

How dare they! They’re not red headed and how dare they join my club? My elite, exclusive red headed club.”

Gotta LOVE this guy!

Damian Lewis talks to Susanne Reid on Good Morning Britain :)
Damian Lewis talks to Susanne Reid on Good Morning Britain 🙂

It seems there is no way Damian is admitting me to his club! I am not even slightly ginger, I am your typical fake ginger! I just trust my lovely partners Tbkwrm and Holliedazzle, both red heads, to make an exception for me to get into the club! 😀

Jokes aside, Damian’s pretty sensitive about the on-going bullying towards red heads, in particular children.

He once tweeted:

source: @lewis_damian Twitter
source: @lewis_damian Twitter

Damian is spot on here because it seems, at least The Atlantic argues, that the on-going bullying  leads to a lack of demand for red head babies!

The Telegraph reports that the largest sperm bank in the world is saying “no, thanks” to potential red-headed sperm donors because of a lack of demand.

So, Damian Lewises, Michael Fassbenders, James McAvoys and slightly red-headed Benedict Cumberbatches of the world, people do not want your babies!



The Atlantic responds to the Telegraph article:

“We wonder why anyone wouldn’t want a baby with beautiful strawberry locks. Perhaps it has something to do with the teasing red-headed children sometimes face? Or maybe it has to do with this NewYork Times piece that claims red heads are more sensitive to physical pain?”

In an interview with the Observer in 2009, Damian says “People find it very difficult to be indifferent to red hair. You get more nicknames than anyone else, which is nice. Rusty, Duracell, Carrot Top, Copper Top, Ginger. Out here it’s “Big Red”. Packing’s harder, because you have to take a lot of sun-cream.”

My VOTE goes to Ginger as the best nickname for a red head!

I certainly would not be happy if someone called me “Hey, Duracell!” but “Hey, Ginger!” sounds quite sexy. And I think Damian kinds of likes it, too. Look how he would introduce himself if he were cast as 007 😀

Then… why don’t you

today? And where is Damian when we need him? 🙂

And if you can’t kiss a ginger, you can always color one!

source: amazon.com
source: amazon.com

Some of us have already colored our favorite ginger… and so can you!

Grab your copy of Colour Me Good Ginger on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk

Author: Damianista

Academic, Traveler, Blogger, Runner, Theatre Lover, Wine Snob, Part-time New Yorker, and Walking Damian Lewis Encyclopedia :D Procrastinated about a fan's diary on Damian Lewis for a while and the rest is history!

5 thoughts on “On Red Heads: Keep Calm and Kiss a Ginger!”

  1. Here in America, at least on the east coast. Yea ginger head were ( so very slightly noticed)…beyond that it was free rollin:)

  2. We had red heads in my fathers side of the family, and I think I have dyed my hair almost every shade of red that there is. I always thought that red hair was unusual and such a beautiful color. I even had a red haired horse. LOL

  3. Don’t forget Anne Shirley (Anne of Green Gables)! She was the reason I dreamt of having red hair as a child.

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