Given the job requirements, it’s not unusual to see an actress try out a new hair color, cut or style. But in some instances, it’s a complete starlet transformation, like when Margot Robbie, the blonde ingenue who lit up The Wolf of Wall Street, walked the Academy Awards red carpet with glossy mahogany locks and an inky Saint Laurent gown. Turns out, her darker tresses were for a role in the upcoming sci-fi film Z for Zachariah. Playing host for the Carmella dinner at West Hollywood’s Petit Ermitage on Thursday, the Aussie stunner weighed in on her hair hues.

Blonde

“It’s more eye-catching. I don’t know if it looks nicer, but it’s kind of highlighted on the screen nicely and in photo shoots and things like that,” she says. But she’s careful about how she pairs her wardrobe with her flaxen hair. “I can never wear anything girly because then I just feel like a Barbie doll,” she says. “I always end up wearing more masculine outfits like black band shirts.”

Brunette

Going dark is Robbie’s comfort zone. “I had brunette hair actually all through high school, so I’ve always really loved this color,” she says. Things lightened up once she hit the audition circuit. “When I started working and acting, they all wanted me to have blonde hair,” she says. Going back to her old color was a nice change, plus, “the dark hair kind of gives me a conditioning aspect,” she adds, pointing out her fried strands. But her brunette hair won’t last for long. Duty calls: To play Jane in the new Tarzan reboot, she’s going to slowly start lightening her strands. “I don’t know to what extent,” she says. “We just know it can’t be this dark.”

The Haircut She’ll Never Try

If Robbie is game for experimenting with different hair shades, she balks when it comes to the shears. She’d never rock a pixie, she says. It goes back to when she was five and sported a boy cut. “Everyone at school actually thought I was a boy,” she recalls. “That was traumatic. I never forgave my mum for that. I am scarred by those memories!”

With reporting by Carita Rizzo