Iceberg Blondes

Hollywood has paraded a dazzling variety of blonde archetypes before us over the decades. They've come brassy and smart-mouthed, stupid and sensual, luscious and deadly. But floating on a lofty pedestal above the sex-on-tap brazenness of other fair types is the sleek, sophisticated blonde whose glacial beauty, poise and apparent unattainability drive celluloid heroes to distraction. Patrician yet purposefully provocative, this blonde is fire and ice personified, a combination of surface gloss, smarts and slow-fire sexuality. She's never without a great string of pearls and a knockout dress, and she can get off a wisecrack as stylishly as she tosses her head. "We're after the drawing-room type, the real ladies, who become whores once they're in the bedroom," Alfred Hitchcock once said. His cool goddess was Grace Kelly, but you may differ and choose your own muse from our tribute to cinema's iceberg blondes.

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GRACE KELLY

Burnished and goddessy in three Alfred Hitchcock classics, Kelly set the gold standard for the regal blondes of the '50s.

MARLENE DIETRICH

Dietrich's frosty exoticism set the temperature for seductions to subzero in the '30s and served as a prototype for the cool aspect of iceberg blondes.

VERONICA LAKE

Lake's peek-a-boo hairstyle and come-hither insolence turned her into an icy screen sensation for the '40s.

FRANCES FARMER

She was hailed as a new Garbo, but Farmer's allure and sullen turbulence were totally unique during her brief career success in the late '30s.

EVA MARIE SAINT

Saint was another '50s class act who radiated fire under a cool, composed exterior.

DINA MERRILL

Merrill's beauty, brains and breeding suggest a Grace Kelly who wasn't lucky enough to find her Hitchcock.

TIPPI HEDREN

In the '60s, Hedren became the last, most complex blonde in Hitchcock's gallery of self-assured sophisticates.

CANDICE BERGEN

Bergen came out of the gate in the mid-'60s as a shining thoroughbred: gorgeous, slightly mocking, unattainable.

MICHELLE PFEIFFER

Pfeiffer's old Hollywood-style beauty and new Hollywood cool reinvented the iceberg blonde for post-moderns with her performance in Scarface.

CYBILL SHEPHERD

Shepherd was an iceberg blonde ideal as a model, then embellished that persona on-screen in the '70s.

SHARON STONE

Stone's working homages to past blonde icons included her Grace Kelly mode in Intersection.

GWYNETH PALTROW

The best example of a 21st century iceberg blonde is unquestionably Paltrow, who showed Grace Kelly moves in A Perfect Murder, but was a more perfect iceberg in Great Expectations, as shown here.



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