Most folks know me as “that writer with curly hair.” It’s the first thing that people notice about me, so I understand the pressure that Jason Momoa is under. The 44-year-old actor plopped himself onto everyone’s ‘hot guy with long hair’ radar as the titular Conan in 2011’s
Conan The Barbarian and fans have been emotionally invested in his hair ever since. If loin cloth action movies are not among your cinematic preferences — no shade ‘cause same — you might have missed his breakout role, but chances are you know his hair. What makes Momoa’s hair evolution so fascinating is that, despite having experienced quite a hair evolution since his first feature film role, the actor frequently plays characters that have his signature long hair look.
Beyond his criminally short run as Khal Drogo on
Game Of Thrones, Momoa has also had long hair as Arthur Curry aka Aquaman in the Aquaman movies, which he’s most known for these days. Trailers for all three seasons of the Apple TV series See have shown me that the primary characteristics of Momoa’s character Baba Voss are that he is blind and strong and also has — wait for it — long hair. Bottom line: Momoa and his signature hairstyle are so embedded in most folks’ minds that when he cuts his hair short, people notice and, if those people are like me, get upset. Heavy is the head that wears the crown of iconic surfer waves.
Ahead, please enjoy the fruits of my extensive research into Jason Momoa’s hair evolution. I’ll go to the grave before admitting to anyone how much time I’ve spent analyzing Momoa’s different hairstyles throughout the years, but I can confidently say that I’ve uncovered every major and minor hair change the actor has undergone in the past 20 years. From short, spiky hair to long, bouncy ringlets, here is every hairstyle Jason Momoa has tried since he hit the big screen. Buckle up, y’all, because despite having “a look,” since at least 2011, he keeps trying new hairstyles (and my nerves, TBH).
November 2000: Jason Momoa With Short Hair Version 1.0 Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection/Getty Images
A little over 20 years ago, Momoa had a baby face and a haircut that could have earned him a spot in any Y2K teen drama on The CW. Is it groundbreaking? Not really, but the volume in the front of this cut hints at the style potential in Momoa’s future.
December 2001: Jason Momoa With Slicked-Back Hair Sebastian Artz/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
In 2001, I was 10 years old and could not have telepathically instructed Momoa to grow out his hair, but someone must have because he popped up in December 2001 with a slicked-back bob. This hairstyle is the kiddie version of Momoa’s eventual signature look and I’m not mad at the Junior Varsity Khal Drogo moment.
July 2004: Jason Momoa With Locs Gregg DeGuire/WireImage/Getty Images
Momoa had a lot going on in 2004, style-wise. His shoulder-length hair was styled in thin dreadlocks and he appeared to be experimenting publicly with facial hair for the first time. It’s not a bad look for Momoa and his hair was clearly up to the challenge, but it’s probably among his most divisive styles.
October 2006: Jason Momoa With Thicker Dreadlocks Steve Granitz/WireImage/Getty Images
From 2004 to 2006, Momoa continued to ride the locs train to style town. In 2006, his locs were thicker and fewer in number than the last time he was photographed with this hairstyle. His beard is also longer and I’m a fan of the shell and metal hoops accenting his hair, but, then again, I’m a sucker for a hair accessory moment.
March 2011: Jason Momoa With Medium-Length Hair Ethan Miller/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Momoa went dark for a hefty chunk of the aughts — I can’t tell you where he went and, apparently, neither can his Wikipedia page — before reappearing sans locs and with that signature scar over one brow (after
getting a pint glass to the face!) at the 2011 CinemaCon Awards. I love the throat-skimming length of his hair here and his return to his natural, dark hair color. August 2011: Jason Momoa With A Lob And No Beard John Phillips/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
I’ve primarily been a fan of Momoa with facial hair, but I will not say no to his bare jawline either. At the
Conan The Barbarian premiere in London, the actor sported a clean shave (minus a maybe accidental soul patch?) and wavy hair at the longest length seen so far. January 2012: Jason Momoa With A Lob And A Beard FilmMagic/FilmMagic/Getty Images
The addition of a beard paired with his shoulder-length hair in January 2012 marks the official transition into what I call “peak Momoa hair.” There’s scruff, curls, and while his beard could be fuller, I’m just happy it’s there.
January 2013: Jason Momoa With Short Hair 2.0 Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
At this point, how dare he? I’m sure there’s a reason Momoa underwent a big chop in 2013, but that doesn’t mean my feelings are any less hurt by these Zac Efron circa
High School Musical styling choices. August 2014: Jason Momoa With Short Hair And A Long Beard Gregg DeGuire/WireImage/Getty Images
The third iteration of Momoa’s short hair journey is probably my favorite. Seen here with temple-skimming curls and a full beard, Momoa is giving soulful warrior poet. I’ll take two, please.
2015: Jason Momoa’s “Funny Hat” Era Frazer Harrison/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
It might be more appropriate to call this Momoa’s “Funny Hat And Mustache Era” because those were the actor’s two defining from-the-neck-up features for the entirety of 2015. At the L.A. premiere of
Mad Max: Fury Road, Momoa covered his shoulder-length hair with a funny hat. 2015: Jason Momoa’s “Funny Hat” Era With Bunny Ears Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Momoa also wore a different, but still funny, hat at the Chicago Comics and Entertainment Expo one month prior to the
Mad Max: Fury Road premiere in April 2015. Believe it or not, this was not the only hat he wore to the C2E2 conference. It was a strange time. I’m glad he grew out of it. August 2016: Jason Momoa With Blond Hair Dave J Hogan/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Momoa at his most blond is far from platinum, but this look is definitely giving sun-kissed. The lightened shade even extends to his beard and mustache.
November 2017: Jason Momoa With Surfer Jesus Hair Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images
What’s the difference between Momoa’s 2016 blond hair and his 2017 Surfer Jesus hair? The difference is admittedly subtle, and is primarily about two inches of length, in addition to some potential deep conditioning treatments because Surfer Jesus Momoa has shiny AF hair.
November 2018: Jason Momoa With A Man-Bun Ian West - PA Images/PA Images/Getty Images
I currently have my hair up in a fluffy top knot, so I’m in no position to judge, but Momoa’s hair pulled back and folded into a half-bun, half-ponytail is my least favorite of the actor’s hairstyles. Nevertheless, this is how he wore his hair to the London
Aquaman premiere, so I can’t just ignore it. January 2020: Jason Momoa With Long, Red Hair VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images
After wrapping his
Aquaman filming and promotional tour, Momoa seems to have shifted back to his natural hair color. By the time the 2020 Golden Globes rolled around, he was sporting long, dark locks. September 2021: Jason Momoa With Blond Ombre Hair Ian West - PA Images/PA Images/Getty Images
Just one year later, Momoa was back to blond. At the latest James Bond flick
premiere in London, he was seen sporting Aquaman’s signature ombre look. March 2022: Jason Momoa With A French Braid And Pink Scrunchie Future Publishing/Future Publishing/Getty Images
This chapter in Momoa’s hair journey is not about length or color. It’s about that little silk scrunchie on the end of the french braid he wore to the Oscars in March 2022. There’s something so incredibly dear about Momoa, a giant of a man, wearing such a diminutive hair accessory in such a delicate shade of pink. Also, it shows that Momoa knows silk hair accessories are an important part of curly hair maintenance.
August 2022: Jason Momoa With Bouncy Curls Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
As a Momoa hair historian, I can tell when the actor is hydrating his hair, and he definitely deep-conditioned before appearing at the
See Season 3 premiere in L.A. His hair is shiny, his ringlets are defined, and his curl pattern is frizz-free. That, ladies and gentlemen, is some nourished hair. September 2022: Jason Momoa With A Shaved Head
As of press time, this is the lone piece of visual media depicting
the partial buzz cut Momoa underwent to bring awareness to the harms caused by single-use plastics. Since I was personally grievously harmed by seeing Momoa hold up two severed braids of his own hair, I’d say his message was received loud and clear. September 2022: Jason Momoa’s Head Tattoo
On Sept. 16, Momoa shared an Instagram Reel that showed off a brand new head tattoo.
Momoa’s head tattoo is technically more the absence of hair than a hairstyle, but this is also the first time I’ve thought he was working the half-bun, half-ponytail look so it goes in the “good hair” column for me. November 2022: Jason Momoa’s Undercut & Head Tattoo Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/Getty Images
On Nov. 9, Momoa attended the premiere of Netflix’s
Slumberland with a ponytail-bun and undercut hairstyle that showed off the actor’s healed head tattoo. While the sides of his head are still shaved, the length of Momoa’s hair looked about shoulder-length, potentially hinting at a return to the long-haired look his fans adored. May 2023: Jason Momoa’s High Ponytail
In an Insta post dedicated to his stunt double for
Fast X, Momoa rocked an adorable high pony, pre-head shave, in a pic taken during filming. The pair wore the same fun purple ‘fit, which coincides with the eccentric vibe of his villain character. May 2023: Jason Momoa’s Low Ponytail
Fast X merch, Jason showed off his shaved head and tattoo in a braided look ending with a low pony. Looking forward to seeing other creative hairstyles Momoa uses to show off his ink. Don't miss a thing
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