— Some women are bent on being blond … or will dye trying. But is it really worth it? Do they really have more fun? Sadly, I must report, in some ways, they do. Maybe the world just isn't fair.
The Wolf Files confirms that blondes on dating service Match.com get significantly more attention from gentleman e-mailers. Golden-haired gals averaged 14 flirtatious messages in May, while redheads averaged 11 and brunettes got a measly nine.
No doubt that's why a user survey of both sexes late last year confirmed that 55 percent agree with the old adage that blondes have more fun.
But don't break out the peroxide just yet. Several studies suggest that men ultimately seek darker-haired women as wives. Fun is fun, apparently, but marriage is a whole different story.
This phenomenon has nothing to do with intelligence. Match.com reports that light-haired ladies are more likely to have college and graduate degrees than other female members. They're also more likely to be employed in the legal profession or other brainy fields. So much for dumb blondes.
How Blond Is Too Blond?
At the root of the issue is Reese Witherspoon, who is back this week as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde 2: Red White and Blonde.
In the first Legally Blonde, Elle packs up her pedigreed Chihuaha and heads to Harvard Law School to win back her boyfriend, Warner Huntington III, a wannabe politician in search of a trophy wife — a brunet trophy wife, to be exact.
"If I want to be elected senator by the time I'm 30, I need to marry a Jackie, not a Marilyn," he tells her.
"You're breaking up with me because I'm too — blond!" Elle cries. In the end she finds a legal career way more exciting than a new hairdo, or winning back her man.
In the sequel, two years later, Elle is as prissy as ever. This time, she takes on Washington, where she's out to stop product testing on animals in the cosmetics industry.
"The cost of beauty is much too high," she says. "I can't believe I just said that." Should Hillary Become a ‘Bottle Brunette’?
Witherspoon's onscreen success aside, could hair color be a political impediment?
A study by hair-care giant Clairol shows that a whopping 76 percent of women and 74 percent of men believe the first woman to be elected president will be a brunette.
Such results might send Hillary Clinton to a colorist, and apparently, New York's blond senator wouldn't be the first powerful lady to do so.
In her new book On Blondes, hair historian Joanna Pitman says famous redhead Queen Elizabeth I was actually a natural blonde, as was the raven-haired beauty Cleopatra. Other scholars beg to differ, but only a queen's beautician might know for sure.
But if Clinton intends to stay natural, perhaps she can find inspiration from a "power blonde" like Margaret Thatcher, who didn't seem to let her hair color diminish her ability to lead.
The Clairol survey of nearly 1,000 customers also showed that you may want to think twice about interviewing for a job on a bad hair day. Respondents said that if a boss had to hire a worker based on hair color alone, the job would most likely go to a brunette and least likely be given to a redhead.
The Greatest Blond Joke — Extinction
Blondes always seem at the center of controversy. Last year, the London Daily Mail reported that natural blondes were headed for extinction, quoting a study conducted by the United Nations' World Health Organization.
According to the newspaper, too few people carry the blond gene to assure its long-term survival — and by the year 2202, the last natural blonde on Earth would go the way of the dinosaur.
But the British paper — and many news organizations that picked up the report — were the victims of a hoax, perhaps the greatest blond joke ever told.
The WHO even issued a denial that it had never conducted such a study, with doctors claiming, "We have no opinion on the future existence of blondes."
Blond Girl Power Trademarked
Facing overt blond oppression, it's no wonder Debra Carroll of Arlington, Wash., created just-for-blondes T-shirts and hats so that girls like her 12-year-old daughter can proclaim their hair color with pride.
Carroll trademarked the slogan "Smart Blonde" and now sells a variety of kids' clothing all over the world through a Web site, getting orders from as far away as Australia.
"Kids are always going to be teased," says Carroll, who also sports golden tresses. "Better they be teased for being a smart blonde than a dumb blonde."
To celebrate fair-haired sisters (and, of course, plug a movie opening), the makers of Legally Blonde 2 instituted National Blonde Day on June 30, teaming with Vidal Sassoon salons in 10 cities to give free "Flash of Blonde" hair color treatments.
But if you missed your chance to go gold, you can still let your hair down and enjoy some great moments in blondedom.
Great Moments in Blondedom
1907: A Bottle and a Dream Blond hair dye first hits the market, thanks to French chemist Eugene Schuller.
1911: The Original Blond Bombshell Jean Harlow is born. In 1930, Howard Hughes cast her as the leading lady in the epic WW1 aviation drama Hell's Angels, and she rose to the highest echelons of stardom. She cemented her reputation in Platinum Blonde and became "The It Girl" in the 1933 Hollywood satire Bombshell, going on to such classics as Dinner at Eight and Libeled Lady.
1928: My Little Chickadee Mae West becomes the toast of Broadway in Diamond Lil. The bawdy actress went on to coin such quips as "Is that a gun in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?," "When I'm good, I'm very good, but when I'm bad, I'm better," and, of course, "A hard man is good to find." West would later say, "I believe in censorship. After all, I made a fortune out of it."
1930: A Blond Strip Queen Dagwood meets Blondie as the Blondie comic strip debuts. Dagwood then spends eternity consuming monstrous sandwiches and sleeping face-down on the sofa.
1946: Workin' 9 to 5 Dolly Parton is born. She becomes one of the most successful country music recording stars, not to mention the namesake of an amusement park and the world's first cloned sheep.
1953: Some Like It Hot Marilyn Monroe is featured on the cover of the first Playboy magazine. Over the next 50 years, 46 percent of all centerfolds would be blondes. Their average age: 22. Average weight: 115 pounds. Average height: 5-foot-6. The most common sign was Libra and their top ambitions were acting, modeling, and finding happiness. Monroe would be posthumously named People magazine's Sexiest Woman of the Century.
1959: A Doll and Her Dreamhouse The Barbie Doll is introduced at the New York Toy Fair, making Malibu Ken forevermore feel anatomically inadequate.
1964: Witchy Women Unite Elizabeth Montgomery debuts as Samantha Stephens on Bewitched. Note that she donned a black wig to play Sam's evil cousin Serena.
1974: Call Me Deborah Harry tops the charts as the lead singer of Blondie. One way or another, she became one of the few stars to survive the disco era.
1981: Fairy-Tale Wedding After many years of bachelordom, Prince Charles marries Lady Diana Spencer in the royal event of the century. British tabloids would savor morsels of gossip about their ill-fated marriage for years to come.
1982: Now That's Living Martha Stewart publishes her first book, Entertaining — a groundbreaking good thing. Bad things were to follow.
1983: Like a Virgin Superstar Madonna releases Madonna, her debut album. She would go from Material Girl to earth mother as she constantly reinvented everything about herself. But even when she's not blond, she's still got blond ambition.
2001: Red, White and Blond Hillary Rodham Clinton becomes the first first lady to be elected to public office, as a senator from New York. In a true story of blond resiliency, she turns the horror of her husband's extramarital affairs with a brunet intern into a best seller.
P.S. Are you blond? Have you noticed at evening cookouts that you get more mosquito bites than your brunet friends? You're not imagining things. Read The Wolf Files' report "Mosquitoes Prefer Blondes."
Buck Wolf is entertainment producer at ABCNEWS.com. The Wolf Files is published Tuesdays. If you want to receive weekly notice when a new column is published, join the e-mail list.