As we know, Rey has a characteristic three-bun hairstyle.
Rey windblownRey slightly neater

Now, to some degree, a (hair) bun is a bun is a bun, right? Well, except that most people wrap hair into a bun, and Rey's hair is actually three loops. You know who else in the Star Wars universe often had her hair in loops? Yup:
Battlemaiden from the frontBattlemaiden from the backParade frontParade back

Do we have any indication about whether this similarity is purposeful rather than coincidental? Production notes or Visual Dictionary-type things? Has anyone interviewed the hairstylist for The Force Awakens?

Note that I'm NOT asking for an in-universe explanation for the hairstyle similarities. While it's doubtless possible to come up with any number of outlandish theories to explain how Rey would be copying someone who died 50+ years before she was born, it's hardly productive, and more to the point, it's not answerable. What I want to know is whether, out-of-universe, we have any reason to think this is more than mere coincidence. (Given what has been posted about the contents of the Visual Dictionary, the answer is looking like "no, it's just coincidence", but 1. I didn't know that when I posted this, and 2. I still hold out hope for a contradictory tidbit from an interview.)

Of course, if we get all conspiracy-theorist, the person who Rey really resembles is Sabé. Maybe Sabé and Obi-Wan did get it on, after all? :)

  • 4
    She was very young when she was left in Jakku, even if she's a Skywalker, she couldn't of known or remembered what hairstyle her ancestors had. Commented Dec 31, 2015 at 22:09
  • Agree with @RickSanchez. Plus it doesn't even seem like she knows her own origins. Commented Dec 31, 2015 at 22:12
  • Upvoted. The suggestion made by the question is unlikely, but plausible.
    – Wad Cheber
    Commented Dec 31, 2015 at 22:57
  • I think her hair is full of midichloridians with Force memory of Padme's hairstyles. Or maybe Nabooneese hair just has natural tendencies to do that.
    – Dronz
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 3:41
  • @RickSanchez There's a flashback seen that shows she remembers the day her parents left; if her mother had the hairstyle, there's no reason she wouldn't remember it
    – Izkata
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 4:55

4 Answers 4


I think the chances that the production team is dropping hints about major plot points via hairstyles is highly unlikely, but just barely plausible.

If we look back at another crucial Star Wars plot point related to parentage, we see quite clearly that secrecy was the top priority for the writers, director, and producers. Before the release of The Empire Strikes Back, the only people who knew that Vader was Luke's father were George Lucas, Gary Kurtz, and Mark Hamill (and presumably writer Lawrence Kasdan and director Irvin Kershner, and later, James Earl Jones), and even Mark Hamill was only told about it moments before filming the iconic "I am your father" scene. The actor inside the Darth Vader suit, David Prowse, didn't learn that Vader was Luke's father until he saw the movie at the premiere screening.

Given the secrecy maintained by those in the know during ESB, and indeed, the incredible levels of secrecy Abrams managed to keep in place prior to the release of TFA, it seems extremely unlikely that the people in charge decided to give away their equivalent of "I am your father" via a few twists of hair.

So no, there is no evidence that The Force Awakens is using hairdos to hint at Rey's origins, but we do know of a somewhat similar instance in which the (out-of-universe) parentage of a character (or rather, an actor) is alluded to through the medium of a familiar coif:

enter image description here

That's Billie Lourd on the left, as she appears (as Lieutenant Connix) in The Force Awakens, rocking the signature double-side-bun style made famous by her real-world mom, Carrie Fisher. So although we'll have to wait until the next movie is released to find out more about Rey's family ties, we can definitively state that - in at least one instance - the producers are trying to tell us something through a character's hairstyle.

Note: This probably goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway - there isn't any obvious, logical way that Rey could have deliberately styled her hair after Padmé's (barring the inadvertent use of the Force), because Luke and Leia spent a whopping total of about 45 seconds in Padmé's company, and neither seems to have had any pictures of their mother. Rey was born decades later, and we don't know how much she knows about her parents, or whether the information she does have - however much or little that may be - is accurate. In any case, it is impossible to imagine her being aware that she's Padmé's granddaughter, and therefore deciding to copy her long-dead grandmother's hairdo. And of course, we have no real reason to believe that Rey is related to Padmé in any way.

  • Everything you say about Luke & Leia & Padmé is of course 100% true and correct, but none of it holds for a descendant of a hypothetical love child of Sabé & Obi-Wan. :) (More seriously, yes, it would be impossible for Rey to be directly copying Padmé unless we hypothesize some highly unlikely Force abilities, but it is nonetheless possible for her to have learned Naboo-style hair fashions some other, entirely mundane way, even if she had no idea whether "Naboo" is something you eat or drink.)
    – Martha
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 3:30

There's no indication (yet) that her hairstyle has a deeper meaning. We won't find out the mysteries of her parentage until the next film.

That being said, at least according the Star Wars: The Force Awakens - Visual Dictionary it seems that her hairstyle was self-applied and chosen for comfort and utility rather than for fashion purposes:

enter image description here

  • 3
    Is the Visual Dictionary an authoritative source? Of Kylo Ren, it states "Accusing finger reinforces unquestioned authority": i.imgur.com/7ZOMcyQ.jpg But in the film, his authority was questioned quite frequently, no matter how accusingly he pointed.
    – recognizer
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 0:03
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    @recognizer - In his own mind, he's unquestioned.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 0:15
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    I dunno, if I wanted a "simple hairstyle for desert survival", I'd put my hair into a single low ponytail; none of this three-loops-and-then-wrap-the-bases-with-some-remaining-strands-of-hair-and-bobby-pin-the-heck-out-of-it nonsense.
    – Martha
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 3:35
  • 2
    @Martha - Ah, but that's because you don't have access to repulsorlift technology.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 9:27
  • 1
    @Richard - too much Corellian Whiskey? Commented Jan 1, 2016 at 23:16

(Spoiler for Rise of Skywalker ahead)

It is a Naboo hairstyle! Rey is a Palpatine! Palpatine was from Naboo! Q.E.D.!

(Obviously, Rey would've learned the hairstyle - which appears to be the only way she knows to do her hair - from her mother, who would've known it because she's from Naboo, or her parents were from Naboo, or some other entirely ordinary method. Or maybe the Star Wars universe is more gender-egalitarian than we've seen, and she learned it from her dad? In any case, we're not talking nonsensical Force-derived ways for Palpatine to teach his granddaughter how to put her hair into loops.)

Of course, supposing that this was planned this way from the beginning, i.e. for Rey's hairstyle to actually be intended from the start to foreshadow her origins, requires us to suppose that J.J. has Palpatine-level prognosticating abilities, not to mention manipulative capabilities...

If anyone gets a chance to interview J.J., can you please ask him this question? Pretty please with a cherry on top?

  • 1
    There's no reason indication that her mother is from Naboo, nor that her father ever set foot on the planet, nor that he had met anyone else from Naboo other than her grandfather.
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 30, 2019 at 15:36
  • In this context, @Valorum, your comment is rather spoilerific. Can you edit out the pronouns or something?
    – Martha
    Commented Dec 30, 2019 at 15:37
  • 1
    Anyone getting this far into the comment chain is gonna get spoiled.
    – Valorum
    Commented Dec 30, 2019 at 15:45

Actress Daisy Ridley wrapped her hairdo for Episode VIII in a pillowcase to conceal it because she said it would be a "spoiler" to the upcoming film.

SURPRISE! It’s #workoutwednesday cause I don’t know if I have time to train Friday! Ran to the gym between different set ups so wore a pillowcase on my head to protect my REY HAIRSTYLE from Instagram’s gaze #secrecyqueen

It is possible Rey's hairstyle could be a clue to her origins, more so for the upcoming Episode VIII. I'm not sure about TFA, but definitely for the sequel.

  • 2
    She didn't say it would be a spoiler. She did hashtag herself as "secrecyqueen" but it's not an indication that her hair would give away her origins.
    – Valorum
    Commented Oct 19, 2016 at 18:24

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