We had a blonde and brunette switch places for the night to find out once and for all who has more fun
The ultimate battle, now with a definitive answer
I’ve spent 21 years identifying more with Audrey than Marilyn, channeling Anne Boleyn as a spirit animal and have generally resigned myself to the reality of being a math major who will absolutely chat you up about economic policies while at a bar. Yes, I’m a brunette.
But I really wanted to know, after years of movies trying to tell me that blondes have more fun, was I really losing out because of my Slavic ancestry? Luckily my best friend Cassandra has naturally bottle blonde tresses, so I figured that I had the perfect control group. Our plan: #KendallAndGigiHairSwap for a night.
Cassandra basically threw her wig on, and it immediately looked natural. Contrary to popular belief, I’m actually biracial, so making my wig look at all natural required immense amounts of powder, especially over my eyebrows, which are basically black.
Also, getting the wig cap as well as the wig is definitely a two person job. For a wig without bangs, especially if you’re going from dark to light like I was, put on the wig prior to breaking out the wine.
After seeing a show in our newly swapped personas, Cassandra and I headed to Seven Grand, a classic whiskey bar in Downtown Los Angeles. We had our brunette friend-slash-photographer Ellen and our blonde friend-slash-deputy-editor Kate come along as our control groups. As a secondary control, Cassandra and I have gone out about a thousand times together over the past three years, and we pull a similar crowd, so we’d immediately notice any deviations from the norm. Obviously. Furthermore, Cassandra and I are generally matched in both intellect and appearance.
The night out
Five minutes into my first Blackberry Bourbon Ricky, a first guy came up to me.
“I just saw your hands and your fur jacket, and I knew I had to talk to you,” he told me. “What’s your name?”
I immediately wanted to call myself “Venus,” but I also wanted Blonde Tiana to hold off on the Sacher-Masoch reference and perhaps present myself as a little less of a nerd than Actual Tiana. Still, so far, all was normal.
But of course, this plan went to hell when he asked me about my work. Within 60 seconds of this question, I was rambling about the merits of a market-oriented carbon tax. Although I do this all the time and most men in L.A. have eagerly engaged with or debated me, Bar Guy #1 just seemed pretty jarred by my mini-rant.
Luckily, we were quickly interrupted by one of my friends, and soon after that, realised that any subsequent Bar Guys™ were largely disinterested with discussing the news or our work. I had no problem discussing whiskey, Lin Manuel-Miranda or the best clubs in L.A., but good God was I over discussing “the industry.”
Later on in the night, two guys asked Cassandra and I to play pool with them, and at one point, I knocked over my drink.
No one clapped with me. I retreated into my terrible pool playing.
By the end of the night, Cassandra and I had essentially gotten the same number of drinks and “where are you from” conversational instigations from men as we usually did. Surprisingly, no one questioned our hair, and we even received a few compliments for it (yes, it’s easy to maintain glossy curls when your hair is fake).
At the end of the night, Cassandra noticed no difference in experience between her Blonde and Brunette self. I certainly didn’t have any less fun as far as the numbers go, but, realistically, there was a gross standard that Blonde Tiana wasn’t supposed to rave about the cinematography of Kung Pow! Enter the Fist, which happened to be playing at Seven Grand that night, let alone actually discuss what I do on a day to day basis.
So, we were inconclusive in determining if blondes have more fun than brunettes, but we did find that there may be a chance they’re held to a different standard. But that’s a hypothesis for another night out.