Pauley Perrette’s iconic jet black hair on NCIS was all for show—she’s actually a natural blonde

Pauley Perrette’s portrayal of Abby Sciuto on “NCIS” from Season 1 to 15 captured fans’ hearts with a style that contrasted sharply with her sunny disposition. As a forensic scientist with a gothic aesthetic, Abby’s love for the supernatural, tattoos, and black attire became her signature.

Despite her morbid interests, hinted at by Agent Tony DiNozzo’s playful suggestion that she might sleep in a coffin, Abby quickly became a beloved character, aligning with the creators’ intentions.

Abby’s unique charm extended beyond her work at NCIS, showcasing her competence and kindness alongside her unconventional tastes. Her iconic look featured striking jet black hair, often styled in pigtails with bangs, a stark departure from Perrette’s natural blonde.

Transforming into Abby required regular dyeing of Perrette’s hair to achieve the character’s signature black hue, with the help of hair and makeup teams who also applied Abby’s neck tattoo for each day of shooting. Despite the on-screen allure, this routine led to significant health challenges for Perrette.

She disclosed on “The Queen Latifah Show” a severe allergy to PPD, a common chemical in hair dye, which once resulted in an emergency hospital visit due to swelling. Consequently, she switched to using black hairspray until her departure from the show in its 15th season.

Post-“NCIS,” in 2021, Perrette embraced a new phase, unveiling a vibrant rainbow-colored hairstyle, a bold departure from Abby’s goth look. Her social media reveals she’s maintained this colorful expression, suggesting she’s moved on from Abby Sciuto’s shadow.

This change marks a significant turn in Perrette’s journey, reflecting both personal growth and a break from the challenges associated with her long-term role on “NCIS.”