By Saryn Chorney
Since the medieval days of Lady Godiva, blond bombshells have been asserting their power over men and inspiring women everywhere to lighten up. Whether they were born blond or went blond later, the ambitions of these iconic stars were always bold and brilliantly colorful.
The Queen of Blondes
For over 25 years, Madonna has been the reigning symbol of sexual power and business prowess. Back in 1990, the pop star even named her controversial concert series the Blond Ambition World Tour. While she's flirted with returning to her natural brunette hue in the past, we do in fac hear that Jesus Luz prefers blondes.
The Golden Age Blonde
When Norma Jeane Baker dyed her brunette head blond, a Golden Age icon was born. Sure, there were blond screen sirens before Marilyn Monroe — Jean Harlow, Mae West, Marlene Dietrich to name just a few — however, this beguiling sex symbol bedded two (maybe) Kennedys, baseball legend Joe DiMaggio, and literary superstar Arthur Miller. We'd call that an ambitious roster for one blonde. So many men, not enough time.
The Bottle Blonde
We hate having to choose between '60s sitcom blondes Elizabeth Montgomery of "Bewitched" and Barbara Eden of "I Dream of Jeannie," but we had to give this one to the latter magical TV babe. Eden's gauzy, hot pink outfit and blond ponytail have inspired sexy, midriff-baring Halloween costumes for more than 40 years. We don't imagine they'll discontinue this top-seller any time soon — unless Jeannie's master wishes it so.
The Country Blonde
Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood, Jessica Simpson, Taylor Swift and the other gals can go caterwaul elsewhere because there will never be another Dolly Parton. The big-haired blonde with the voluptuous body has a voice that's scored 25 No. 1 singles and a record 42 top 10 albums. Not to mention that Parton starred in three of the most seminal '80s movies: "Nine to Five," "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas," and "Steel Magnolias." As if that weren't ambitious enough, she also has her own theme park called, of course, Dollywood.
The Blond Angel
From shampoo commercial star to pinup model phenomenon to mega-famous television and film star, Farrah Fawcett is more than Charlie's most ambitious angel. An iconic beauty with tousled hair and a bright, wide smile, Farrah is a cultural and style icon, not to mention a sex symbol for the ages. (We've seen the word "sex" spelled in her hair, so we know this on a deeper, subconscious level, too.) Strong, seductive and a media darling, Drew's crew couldn't hold a candle to the original butt-kicking babe.
The Movie Musical Blonde
Could any role be more iconic than good-girl-gone-bad blond Sandy in the hit 1978 movie "Grease"?
Well, if you said Olivia Newton-John's role in the cult classic "Xanadu," we might let it slide. Still, we're hopelessly devoted to the image of a post-makeover Sandy in the skintight black spandex outfit and big blond curls. And who could ever forget Olivia's 1981 classic jam "Physical" — or the exercise craze the song and video ignited? There hasn't been a singing/dancing blonde in a headband wearing spandex on rollerskates with an Australian accent quite like her since.
The Royal Blonde
"England's Rose" Diana Spencer — better known as Diana, Princess of Wales — seemed to live a charmed, fairytale life that was eventually revealed to be much more turbulent. Although the regal beauty divorced Prince Charles, and died tragically before her time, the public admiration and fascination surrounding her life, humanitarian work and children remains.
The Supermodel Blonde
Who would ever believe that the quintessential California surfer girl was discovered in a post office in Paris? In record time, Christie Brinkley became the go-to model, scoring an unheard of 20-year contract with Covergirl, then appearing on three consecutive Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue covers — all that, and she never even dated Leonardo DiCaprio.
However, she did marry (and later divorce) singer Billy Joel, as well as star in some of his best music videos ("Uptown Girl"). And perhaps most iconically, Christie was the hot blonde in the red Ferrari tempting Chevy Chase in "National Lampoon's Vacation."
The Beach Blonde
There were many hot blond babes running across the beach in red, wet bathing suits on "Baywatch," but only one, Pamela Anderson, captured international attention. As famous for her platinum blond locks as she is for her breast implants, Tommy Lee sex tape, and multiple marriages, Pammy is every tabloid editor's towhead dream girl.
The Grunge Blonde
We've got to say it: Courtney Love is the original blond hot mess. As lead singer of Hole, Love was queen of the '90s grunge scene, while her husband Kurt Cobain was the king of pain. After his suicide, Love persevered and went on to greater musical success and even an acclaimed acting career. Despite her addiction issues, she's managed to keep it together as of late, though she might be in need of a Twitter celebrity intervention.
Pop Princess Blonde
Between Christina Aguilera, Jessica Simpson, Lady GaGa and oh-so-many more pop-tart-lette blondes, Britney Spears always stood out at the head of the pack. Her music videos, tours, and appearances are massive pop culture events, and her private life and loves are even more fascinating. This obsession with Brit may, in fact, be funding half of the U.S. economy right at this very moment.
The Blonde Fashionista
"Sex and the City" star Sarah Jessica Parker hit the jackpot when she was cast as Carrie Bradshaw, the curly-haired, fictional blond New York City writer and lover of expensive accessories extraordinaire. Now, a generation of boho women with a love for horseshoe necklaces, Balenciaga bags and Manolo Blahnik shoes will be forever searching for their "Mr. Big" … at least vicariously through TBS reruns and DVD sets. All that, and she married Ferris Bueller, too. Did we mention she's also the quirkiest blond icon?
The Blonde Socialite
Love her or leave her, Paris Hilton has become the symbol for a new blond generation. The flaxen-haired heiress with the snooty attitude has somehow managed to morph into a multihyphenate businesswoman. From "1 Night in Paris" to "The Simple Life" to "My New British BFF," if there's an ambitious skill left inside Hilton's body, it must include reality TV and/or the Internets.