rihanna's hair evolution 60 hairstyles we know you'll love

Rihanna's Hair Evolution : 60 Hairstyles We Know You'll Love

Rihanna and Her Hair!

Rihanna is the musical icon responsible for the “Waa waa wild thoughts” tune stuck in your mind and the irresistible urge to “whine” to all her dancehall songs. Miss Fenty is not only known for her endless dance hits, but also her edgy hairstyles. Rihanna's hairstyles are a staple when it comes to looks!

Over the year the icon has blessed us with amazing and versatile hair looks. Let us take a look at Rihanna's hair evolution.

Rihanna Sleek Hair

2005: New Girl On The Scene

Over a decade ago in 2005, 15-year-old Rihanna signed to Island Def Jam Records and released her first song "Pon De Replay". The song was a fun jam with a reggae beat that was played in clubs everywhere and needless to say it was a hit.

During this breakout period, she rocked long, brown hair with bangs. I remember this as her signature hairstyle when she first started out. Her girl-next-look charm and relatable look made us fall in love. Check it out!

Rihanna Brown Hair

As a new artist, Rihanna’s hair was natural looking and usually a long length. She often wore it straight or curled, and always a warm brown tone. She also wore long brown wavy hair for an effortless look.

Rihanna Brown Hair

Every once in awhile Rihanna would switch her look up by adding a curl or a different style but the color and length would remain the same. Check her out rocking a sleek and straight look with full bangs!

Rihanna Bangs

2006: Play It Safe

In 2006 Rihanna continued to play it safe with her long brown hair in various curly styles.

For the most part, her hairstyle during the first two years of her career were the same long brown tresses with a slight curl. Who would have ever guessed that over the years Rihanna would start to make hair changes frequently and bold ones at that?

It was the year after this that she began to surprise all of us.

Brown Hair



2007: All Grown Up

A few years following her debut, Rihanna released Good Girl Gone Bad, an album that signified her musical and personal style shift. She made a rebellious statement by chopping her hair into a short, graduated bob and by dying her hair jet black.

Jet black was the perfect hair color to go along with the bad girl vibes that she gave in her new album.

RihRih Bob Cut

Rihanna made it clear that she wasn’t a little girl anymore, and her style was much more mature and edgy.

Bob Blonde Highlights

RiRi coined the bob as her signature style in 2007. She played around with different bob looks from middle parts to bangs but her most infamous bob look was her asymmetrical bob.

It was this bob look that became Rihanna's first iconic look. This hairstyle really transformed her from a teen singing sensation to an icon in the making.

Fans from everywhere were requesting this hairstyle from their hairstylists. It became so popular that when you said "I want my hair like Rihanna", everyone knew what you were talking about. Up until this day people still know what you mean when you mention the Rihanna bob. Over 10 years later this is still one of Rihanna's most iconic hair looks.

Riri Black Hair

Riri Bob

2008: Short Hair Don't Care

If you thought Rihanna's 2007 hair look was a bold and risky change wait until you see what she did in 2008.

In 2008 Rihanna officially joined the short hair don't care gang. Cutting her hair even shorter, Rihanna created an edgier look for herself. Who needs long hair when you’re as amazing as her? Rihanna can literally pull any hair look off. We will see this even more and more as the years go on. Let's get into what styles Rihanna started rocking in 2009.

Short Black Hair

Black Hair

Black Hair

2009: Dark and Edgy Short Haircuts

With a dark turn to her music style, Rihanna’s hair had to do the same. In 2009 Rihanna's short hair was her signature look. She switched up her look frequently rocking short mohawks, curls, highlights, bold undercuts and so much more.

She had so many different looks with short hair and showed us that with a little bit of creativity short hair could be very versatile.

Riri Blonde

Black hair red lips

Riri Black Blonde

Keeping the short-cropped look, Rihanna switched things up by adding blonde to her signature style. Whether worn sleek and straight or curled, she looked terrific in blonde.

Over the next few years, we will later find out that Rihanna looks good in practically any hair color.

Riri Glamour

Riri Short Blonde Hair

Short Curly Blonde

2010: Fiery Red

In 2010 Rihanna spiced things up and turned the heat up a notch by going red! 2010 was the year of red for Rihanna and we were all here for it!

Following a recent breakup with Chris Brown, RiRi rocked a brand new look for the year. This bright scarlet red looked terrific on her and complimented her edgy personality.

Rihanna had just given many women the guts to go short and now she gave many women the confidence to go red as well. She occasionally rocked blonde locks, but she was definitely in a fiery mood most of 2010.

Riri Red HAir

Rihanna slayed the red look in many different ways by rocking different lengths. Rihanna slayed us by bringing back her long hair! While a short haircut is her signature look, we were relieved to see her in long hair again!

We are and will always be here for a Rihanna hair switch up.

Riri Red Hair 2

Rihanna's red hair was a look! She rocked a deep burgundy/red color with big bouncy curls for the American Music Awards.

Riri Red CurlyEven with the new color, she reverted to her signature pixie cut! Pixie cuts are such a cute and timeless style. We have seen many in Hollywood rock this look. I have to say; no one rocks a pixie cut like Rih Rih!

Over the years we have seen Rihanna rock various pixie cut styles and colors all with ease. She makes switching up your hair look so easy!


Hair accessories are another way that Rihanna switches up her hair look. This sparkling headband adds an extra spark to her hairstyle!

Riri Red HAir

Just in case you were wondering, it is super easy to get this bright red color. Instead of using dark color bundles, try Private Label Extensions Russian Blonde bundles. Coloring Russian Blonde bundles are so much simpler than bleaching dark colored hair, and it also preserves the quality of the hair.

With our quality bundles and some quality hair dye, you'll be rocking bomb red tresses just like Rih Rih in no time!

2011: Auburn Hair

Rihanna must have loved her red hair because she kept it all the way through 2011. For the 2011 Met Ball, she rocked her long red hair in a simple braid. I love this look because it is simple, elegant, yet still glamorous and beautiful.

For the 2011 Grammys, she rocked what seems to be her natural hair, colored auburn red. This red is much warmer in tone compared to the bright red she was wearing previously, but it is just as beautiful. This natural length and texture remind me of early Rihanna!

Red Bob

Speaking of early Rihanna, she also brought her full bangs back! These bangs are nostalgic for 2005 Pon De Replay, but the red color adds her signature edge.

Riri Red Bangs

Rihanna also rocked this rich red kinky curly afro! This afro might be short-lived, but I have to say it was pretty different even for her.

Kinky Curly Red

2012: Blondes Have More Fun!

The blonde attack is back!

Rihanna went blonde on us again in 2012! What’s a better way to kick off a new year than with platinum blonde hair? Instead of a super short cut, she keeps her hair at shoulder length with dark brown roots and bright blonde ends.

Blonde Wavy Hair

The big blonde hair was a new look for her, and she looked so fun and carefree in it!

Blonde Hair

Back to Black

In other 2012 hair news, Rihanna rocked this super sleek jet black hairstyle for the 2012 GQ Men of The Year party. Not forgetting that red is her color, she paired a red Calvin Klien dress with strappy sandals, hoop earrings, and a diamond necklace. Even with effortless hair, makeup, and outfit, she still slays. Rihanna proves that that less is more!

sleek black Hair

Rihanna also wore these beautiful faux locs! Rih Rih tweeted “Wake bake shake dem dreads” with an attached photo of her twisted tresses. Check it out!

Riri Dreads

When asked on Twitter why such a drastic hairstyle change, she replied “their HOT! ;)” since I was 14, but mama Fent’z wasn’t having it! Hehe.” I’m sure Miss Fenty doesn’t have much of a say these days. She still changes her hairstyles so frequently there is only a matter of time before a new hairstyle!

Shortly after the locs, Rihanna chopped it all off and went back to her signature pixie cut. What a shocker!

Riri pixie cut

2013: Edgy Styles

In 2013, Rihanna hit the red carpet with long light brown hair and highlights. To make the look her own, she added a shaved side to pump up the edge factor.

long hair shaved

2013 was also the year of the mullet for Riri. Despite negative feedback from her fans, Rihanna rocked the mullet anyways! That’s right girl, show them you don’t need approval!

Riri Mullet

2014: Bantu Knots

In 2014 Rihanna traded the mullet in for long dark tresses. Riri couldn’t go wrong with this beautiful and natural “wet and wavy” hair.

wet and wavy

For the iHeartRadio Music Awards, she rocked this unique Bantu knot style on what looks like a full lace wig!

This goes to prove that Rihanna can slay any hairstyle! What do you think?

Riri Bantou Knots

To finish off the year, she sported a classy messy updo to the 2014 Met Gala.

Riri Met Gala

2015: Classic and Elegant

In 2015, she took a break from the bright colors and crazy styles and opted for more classic, simple looks.

Riri looks beautiful with her long dark hair, reminiscent of 2012.

wavy black hair

Rihanna’s half-up-half-down look has always been one of my personal favorites! Not only is the half-up-half-down look so easy to achieve it is also super girly, fun, and cute.

half up half down

Rihanna looked elegant at the 2015 Diamond Ball with her long black hair styled straight back.

Riri Ball

No matter how much Rihanna switches up her hairstyle, she seems to also come back to bangs one way or another! Check her out in this messy ponytail with full bangs!

Riri Messy Bun

2016: Back to the Basics

Rihanna rocked a super cropped bob in 2016, bringing the short hair back in a less drastic manner.

middle par bob

Long dark hair again for the win!

straight black

Rihanna also revisited the Bantu knots.

Riri Bantu knots

This avant-garde look for Elle is one of her most creative hairstyles.

Riri Elle

Rihanna even showed us her Caribbean culture through her hair looks. Here, she also slayed locs again.

Riri Braids

Rihanna stunned at the 2016 VMAs with her sleek and straight hair styled straight back.

Riri all black

Riri served us red hair again for the 2016 Met Gala! This short, flipped bob reminds me of the Great Gatsby, especially with her elegant headpiece.

Met Gala

2017: Simple Yet Memorable

Rihanna kept her hairstyling pretty simple and 2017, and instead focused on her personal style.

Denim Outfir

Rihanna looks stunning in beautiful long, dark wavy hair at her Fenty Beauty presentation in Madrid, Spain.

wet wavy hair

Rihanna is glowing and allowing her inner beauty to shine in this super sleek ponytail and simple makeup.

Confidence is not a scarcity in this picture of her! She looks stunning with her sleek, low ponytail, and side bang.

Riri Sleek

Rihanna rocked bigger and longer locs than she did in 2016. These locs remind of Bob Marley’s beautiful freeform locs.


Rihanna finally experimented with color again in this beautiful synthetic ponytail in her editorial shoot with Paper Magazine.

Riri Lavender Ponytail

In that same editorial shoot with Paper Magazine, she rocked what looked like cone-shaped buns in her hair. The shoot immediately went viral, no one had ever done this before!

Paper Magazine

This wet and wavy look is the infamous “waa waa wild thoughts!” hairdo from the Wild Thoughts music video with DJ Khaled and Bryson Tiller! You or your stylist can easily recreate this look with Private Label Extensions Water Wave bundles!

Wild Thoughts Hair

Robyn spiced up her new sleek look with a few vintage-looking hairpins.

Riri w/ Hairpins

Ms. Fenty slayed us all at the 2017 Met Ball, and this is by far one of her most iconic looks. She wore thigh-high strappy sandals, blush pink, and blue avant-garde dress super highlighted makeup. It was only right to keep the hair simple with a sleek top-knot bun and full bangs. Executed to perfection!

Riri Met Gala

Here’s a style she has never done before: short curly afro!

Riri short curly afro

This hairstyle might be another short-lived afro, but she looks stunning in it like every other short haircut she rocks.

It was almost like de-ja vu! Rihanna returned to her long, brunette tresses at the 2017 Grammy Awards. She reminded us of the young girl with long brown tresses that we all first fell in love with.

Riri Brown Hair

2018 has just begun, so it seems like Rihanna is going to give us a moment to breathe before snatching our wigs again with a new hairstyle. I have a feeling she is going to fill 2018 with more classic and elegant hairstyles and a few Avante-Garde looks.

What do you think of her many hairstyles? Has she ever inspired you to do something drastic to your hair? Lastly, what year was your favorite Rihanna hairstyle year? Mine has to be 2010 because that fiery red was everything I ever needed from a hairstyle! I can’t wait to see your responses below!

Happy New Year!

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