While there isn’t a set premiere date for season three of the hit series “Bridgerton” yet, all eyes are on the reported leading couple: Colin Bridgerton and Penelope Featherington, played by Luke Newton and Nicola Coughlan, respectively. This season will explore how the Bridgerton brother woos the Lady Whistledown alias, and like its predecessors, it’s sure to be filled with drama, angst, and romance. Beyond that, this upcoming season also seems to cement a hilarious trend that viewers have noticed over the last few years: the “Bridgerton” leading-man glow-up, in which the main character goes through a hair (both on the head and face) transformation during the series.
“The Bridgerton leading man glow-up actually needs to be studied,” one user wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter. “I’m flabbergasted,” another said. “What does Shonda say to them? Does she wave their paycheck in front of them and threaten to burn it if they don’t get prettier?!” Commentary aside, there really does seem to be a certain look that all the “Bridgerton” men adhere to when their time comes for the spotlight.
Season one started with Regé-Jean Page as Simon Basset looking like what can only be described as the formula for tall, dark, and handsome. Page had a cropped, mini Afro for most of his season, and the cut was accompanied by a neatly shaved goatee that managed to highlight his stunning facial structure. This was a departure from how fans knew the star before, which was as a baby-faced college student in the comedy “Fresh Meat.”
The show’s sophomore season saw Jonathan Bailey, who plays Anthony Bridgerton, go from the uptight head of the family to a certified lover boy. With that transformation came the removal of his side bang and almost bowl-cut-like hairstyle, as well as the mutton-chops-styled facial hair he had in season one. In its place? A perfectly styled coif and just a hint of a five o’clock shadow. For an outing during Milan Fashion Week, Newton was spotted in this exact formula: a haircut with cropped sides and gelled waves plus a neatly shaved goatee.
Some fans of the show believe Shonda Rhimes just has a penchant for picking incredible leading men (her track record does speak for itself), but the transformations could also underscore each character’s journey into figuring out who they are as individuals. In the few flashbacks of the first Viscount Bridgerton, the family’s patriarch is seen with some elements of all his sons’ looks — whether it’s the prominent sideburns à la Anthony in season one or the slightly wavy hair spotted on Colin in season two. In some ways, it seems as if each boy is trying to emulate their father. Their resulting “glow-ups” could be indicative of them finally coming into their own as mature individuals, a characteristic that feels universally, well, hot.
Whether the reasons for each character’s glow-ups are psychological or the “Bridgerton” writers simply want people going absolutely feral over their leading characters each season, all this chatter about the leading-men glow-up has us waiting anxiously for season three. In the meantime, set a game plan for your own fall glow-up, and look into some of the latest makeup or hair trends. After all, eyes are always on the queen’s diamond.