Created By: blueranger on September 23, 2011 Last Edited By: DisasterFrog on October 17, 2011
Troped

Shaking Her Hair Loose

A woman dramatically unties her hair and shakes it loose

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Needs a Better Title

Imagine this picture: a woman with her hair tied up in a bun, held in place only with a pin or some kind of stick. She pulls it out of her hair and shakes it out, allowing it to fall down freely. This is sometimes accompanied by a Dramatic Wind. It can usually either be part of a romantic scene or something dramatic though it does pop up in parodies a lot of the time too. The woman will usually be dressed up to the nines as well and the letting the hair out of its fancy updo is often the first step towards her undressing for her lover. A variant is for the woman's hair being tied up to reflect discipline and structure and allowing the hair to come undone is a symbol of freedom. Or sometimes it could be just for plain old Fanservice. A lot of the time this woman will have Rapunzel Hair but the hair just needs to be long enough to tie up so past the shoulders at the shortest. Compare Letting Her Hair Down when a woman is shown wearing her hair down or looser to show how she's relaxing as a character and also Slipknot Ponytail when the hair gradually becomes undone on its own. Sometimes overlaps with Beautiful All Along. Could be seen as a sister trope to the Important Haircut without any actual hair cutting. If it's done for Fanservice then it'll usually be accompanied by a Hair Flip.

Examples:

Anime & Manga
  • Sophie of Last Exile is prim and proper with her hair tied up in a bun all the time. But when she is revealed to be the princess and returns to claim the throne she removes the bun and lets down her hair, resulting in a shift of behaviour as well.

Film
  • At the end of The Magdalene Sisters Bernadette sees two nuns watching her in the tunnel and, remembering when her hair was forcibly cut off, takes out the pin and shakes it loose before looking at them.
  • At the end of Twilight we see Victoria watching Edward and Bella through a window, all dressed up. As she walks away she pulls a pin out of her hair and lets it fall to her waist.
  • In American Beauty when Jane strips for Ricky she unties her hair before taking off her bra and is more beautiful because of it.
  • In the Disney Channel movie Model Behaviour Alex always wears her hair up in a tight bun held in place with two chopsticks. When she and Janine switch the first part of her transformation is shaking her hair out. This then gets inverted when Janine changes to Alex as she puts her hair up.
  • Parodied in Loaded Weapon where a plain dowdy woman unties her hair and when she looks up she's played by a completely different actress.
  • A variation in Heartbreakers when Paige/Wendy is revealed to be Max's daughter she pulls off her red wig and shakes her natural brown hair loose.
  • In Mr. & Mrs. Smith Jane goes to see a mark pretending to be a prostitute with her hair pinned up. The first part of the seduction is shaking her hair out.

Literature
  • In the poem The Highway Man Bess the landlord's daughter leans out over the window and undoes her hair, allowing it to fall down so her lover can touch it.
  • Della from Gift of the Magi is said to have hair right down to her waist but keeps it pinned up all the time. She lets it down dramatically just before it gets cut off to be sold.
  • Some versions of Rapunzel have the long golden hair braided 90% of the time and it's only untied when Mother Gothel or the prince climb up it.
  • Perenelle from The Alchemyst series is introduced with her hair tied back in a long plait. She shakes it loose whenever she performs magic.
  • In The Famine Secret Fiona's long blonde hair is cut off when she enters the workhouse and when it grows longer she keeps it tied back so it won't get in the way. When she and her siblings escape the workhouse and go back to their home she unties her hair and allows the wind to blow it around her shoulders.

Live Action TV
  • In the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Go Fish" Buffy pulls a pencil out of her hair and shakes it loose.
  • Parodied in an episode of Tucker where Tucker imagines his parents getting together in a dramatic scene without dialogue. Jeannie first takes her hairclip out and shakes her hair loose before ripping off her waitress uniform to reveal a fancy dress underneath.
  • Another parody in an episode of Degrassi where Holly J shakes her hair out in a failed seduction attempt.
  • In one of Barney's Imagine Spots in an episode of How I Met Your Mother he seduces a female cop and she proceeds to shake her hair out of its bun and strip for him.
  • A quasi-parody happens in the Murder Mystery episode of Lizzie McGuire when Larry starts chatting up Veruca, both of them dressed in Edwardian era clothes. Veruca shakes her hair down as some faux dramatic music plays.
  • An episode of Friends has Ross and Monica's cousin Cassie shaking her hair loose in slow motion, prompting a sagging jaw from Chandler, Ross forgetting he's related to her and even Phoebe getting turned on.

Music
  • Rachel Steven's song "Some Girls" is about a woman attempting to seduce a man to get what she wants and one of the lines is "I'm gonna shake my hair out loose".

Professional Wrestling
  • Brooke Adams does this as part of her entrance in TNA, accompanied with dramatically removing her glasses and her coat.
  • When Michelle McCool had her sexy teacher gimmick she would sometimes come out with her hair in a bun and held in place with a pencil, only to pull it out and shake it loose when she started wrestling.
  • Similar to the Michelle example Molly Holly in her WCW Miss Madness gimmick wore her blonde hair in a posh updo to fit her beauty pageant gimmick but when she wrestled she would dramatically undo her hair and shake it free.

Western Animation
  • Happens in Mulan at the end of the "Reflection" song where Mulan slowly removes all traces of the makeover she got for her meeting with the Matchmaker.
  • Another parody pops up in Marge Simpson's novel "The Harpooned Heart" where the book's heroine wears her hair under a bonnet but her lover pulls it off and lets it out. Though this is Marge's hairstyle we're talking about so instead of falling down it shoots up.
  • Played straight in the Simpsons Episode 'Last Tap Dance in Springfield' with Lisabella, the librarian.
  • In the Family Guy episode "Road to Rhode Island", Lois convinces Peter to watch some couples counseling with her, hosted by a mousy relationship doctor named Dr. Amanda Rebecca. After a few seconds, Dr. Rebecca asks the women to leave the room, as the next part only corresponds to the men. When Lois departs, Dr. Rebecca tells Peter to "make sure your wife is out of the room" in a slightly more forceful tone. She then removes her glasses, shakes her hair bun loose in a dramatic (but sexy) fashion, starts speaking in a huskier voice (with her first line being "So, you wanna talk, or do you want me to take my top off?"), and gives Peter quite the eyeful with a striptease as a Sexophone plays. Her eyes even (in a rare Western Animation example) shift from Tareme to Tsurime. It turns out that these "relationship videos" are merely a front for Amanda to distribute pornographic videos of herself. Needless to say, Peter's on board with these videos.
Community Feedback Replies: 8
  • September 23, 2011
    lebrel
    I think this is Slipknot Ponytail, which isn't just for action scenes; the laconic thereof is "A compact hairdo gets dramatically undone for Fan Service."
  • October 8, 2011
    Sackett
    There might be a trope here about the symbolic nature of it being used as a decision point similar to Important Hair Cut.

    The example I'm thinking of is Sophia for Last Exile who as the prim and proper XO has her hair up in a bun. But when it's revealed that she is secretly the princess and she has decided to return and claim the throne she removes her bun and lets down her hair, resulting in a shift of behavior as well.
  • October 8, 2011
    blueranger
    Yeah there might be something there because I remember reading somewhere that in older times women would wear their hair down as virgins but tie it up once they were married. I guess there is some symbolism about how hair tied up is associated with being prim and proper since a lot of schools have a rule that girls can't have their hair down. Then having the hair loose is a sign of being free.
  • October 10, 2011
    TBeholder
    Compared with Letting Her Hair Down as advised. still don't see the difference.
  • October 11, 2011
    blueranger
    Letting Her Hair Down is about a character starting to wear her hair down to show she's relaxing as a character. A lot of tropers seem to take it literally about a woman actually untying her hair. The description is clear that it's subtle and done for character development.
  • October 12, 2011
    X2X
    Compare Hair Flip?
  • October 14, 2011
    X2X
    Western Animation
    • In the Family Guy episode "Road to Rhode Island", Lois convinces Peter to watch some couples counseling with her, hosted by a mousy relationship doctor named Dr. Amanda Rebecca. After a few seconds, Dr. Rebecca asks the women to leave the room, as the next part only corresponds to the men. When Lois departs, Dr. Rebecca tells Peter to "make sure your wife is out of the room" in a slightly more forceful tone. She then removes her glasses, shakes her hair bun loose in a dramatic (but sexy) fashion, starts speaking in a huskier voice (with her first line being "So, you wanna talk, or do you want me to take my top off?"), and gives Peter quite the eyeful with a striptease as a Sexophone plays. Her eyes even (in a rare Western Animation example) shift from Tareme to Tsurime. It turns out that these "relationship videos" are merely a front for Amanda to distribute pornographic videos of herself. Needless to say, Peter's on board with these videos.
  • October 17, 2011
    Wheezy
    A gender-reversed version happens when Finn unveils his body-length hair in Adventure Time.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=t2xrjg0lcf9d7mrf4q8ryj76