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People Like Beyoncé Better as a Blonde

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Does Beyoncé make a bigger impression on consumers as a blonde than as a brunette? According to one study, based on H&M's new ads featuring one Mrs. Carter and her latest song, the answer is a definite yes:

The ad featuring Beyonce as a blonde scored significantly better with consumers, and 16% of consumers mentioned the singer by name, according to research from AceMetrix. In contrast, in the ad featuring Beyonce as a brunette, attention scores were lower and only 7% of consumers referenced the singer by name. Of course, it could be that the Beyonce in a bikini outperforms Beyonce in a wet, clinging dress.

Ah, yes. It could be that.

Here's the ad where Bey is blonde:

And here's the ad where she is a brunette:

Same song, same dance, same setting; different outfits, different hair, and apparently, different consumer reaction. One clip is in daylight, the other is set mostly at night – could there be some cosmic significance to that, too? Is this just the inevitable result of Bey wearing her hair blonde for much of the past decade, and consumers therefore finding her image more familiar that way than as a brunette? And how does race play into this? As a black woman, Beyoncé's hair is not naturally blonde. She can do what she likes with her hair, of course, but is it potentially troubling that consumers would "relate" to her more when she has hair of a color more closely associated with people of Northern and Eastern European heritage than with people of African heritage? Beauty companies have been accused of lightening Beyoncé's skin in the past.

— Jenna Sauers

· Beyoncé's H&M Video Debuts Along With Her New Song [Racked]
· Behold Beyoncé for H&M, the Complete Campaign [Racked]